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[Xmca-l] Re: Отв: Re: Vygotsky and Feurebach by Peter Keiler

Dear All

(Following on from Sasha's point.)

One very nice aspect of Spinoza's metaphysics, that is made full use of by Ilyenkov, is the nature of the body. In Spinoza's jargon a body is a finite mode of substance under the attribute of extension. There is no presupposition that a "body" is a physically or biologically individuated single entity (e.g. a human being). In fact, as far as I can tell, there is no presupposition that a body is a contiguous lump of spacetime. Individuation of bodies seems to be entirely a question of shared activity and conatus (Spinoza's jargon: roughly striving or self-preservation). Spinoza's metaphysics is radically anti-reductionist (e.g., "fundamental particle" is a contradiction in terms, the only fundamental entity is substance as a whole).

So, in Ilyenkov, the subject of activity is often not an individual person but society or even humanity as a whole. Similarly, in Vygotsky's Thinking and Speech, the child is often relatively passive, while the larger body --- the social environment --- is active (e.g., where the English translation has "the child learns" the Russian often has "the child is taught"). The child's development is a story of the child's sharing in the activity of the larger body. In earlier works, e.g., Educational Psychology, Vygotsky is perhaps still basing his own ideas on the prevailing reductionist behaviourism.

A lot of Anglo-American psychology seems to presuppose the human individual (or biological mechanisms within the human individual) as a kind of fundamental particle.

Best wishes


On 05/08/2017 07:43, Alexandre Sourmava wrote:
Point taken! The issue with distinctions between Feuerbach and Marx is crucial. Surely Feuerbach as materialist has to do nothing else but apply to Spinoza. But his interpretation of basic Spinozian ideas and Marx's interpretation of Spinozism are strictly opposite. Feuerbach was consistent sensualist, while Marx standed on idea of activity. Real bodily activity. Feuerbach was psychologist whereas in contrast Marx was antipsychologist, but activist.
It looks like Vygotsky in his early soviet situation tried to base on Feuerbach's ideas indeed. And just that led him to the dead end of his semiotics. To put this another way we can say that Feuerbach as sensualist paved the way to positivism and relativism both in philosophy and psychology.In fact Ilyenkov was the first after Marx thinker, who presented basically activist, non sensealist interpretation of Spinozism and Marxism. This idea was so much big that iven EVI hemself did not fulfil it's reachness.
I mean that the idea that psyche, thinking or consciousness are basically the process of acting of a corporeal subject according to the shape of his object, or in terms of Ilyenkov/Spinoza the mode of acting of the thinking body. On the contrary, Feuerbach is the father of leading to dead end idea that thinking is functioning of human brains and the bridge from the narrow space of human's head to external world is such a magic entity as (passive) sensation.


     суббота, 5 августа 2017 5:57 Wolff-Michael Roth <wolffmichael.roth@gmail.com> писал(а):
  Mike, Peter provides some references that allow many to link Feuerbach
references in Vygotsky to the original sources---I have some of the works
published in the early 1800s, where the quotations Peter takes can be found
(like vol. 2 of Collected Works).

Peter does not write about what Marx took up from Feuerbach, and which he
rejected (in the Theses on Feuerbach).

Of relevance to the recent discussion on Spinoza. Feuerbach was well-read
on Spinoza and published and taught Spinoza.

To me the way Vygotsky applies the thing possible for two that is
impossible for one, applied to the word, in the way Marx applied it to the
commodity, appears to be a significant idea. It is significant because it
runs against the constructivist strain in our community, which begins with
the idea that 'meaning' is personal (people haven't been reading Mead


Wolff-Michael Roth, Lansdowne Professor

Applied Cognitive Science
MacLaurin Building A567
University of Victoria
Victoria, BC, V8P 5C2
http://web.uvic.ca/~mroth <http://education2.uvic.ca/faculty/mroth/>

New book: *The Mathematics of Mathematics

On Fri, Aug 4, 2017 at 5:02 PM, mike cole <mcole@ucsd.edu> wrote:


Attached in English, Russian, and German is an articles by Peter Keiler
about Vygotsky and Feuerbach that I am sure a number of you will be
interested in. Most of us know Feuerbach from his famous theses and no
more. Peter opens up a great many aspects of Feuerbach's writings that are
echoed in various ways throughout Vygotsky's writings and links them to the
political/social/ideological/ context of the shifting times.

Thanks Peter.

Ivan A. Uemlianin PhD

Ymchwil a Datblygu Technoleg Lleferydd
Speech Technology Research and Development


                        festina lente