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[Xmca-l] Re: Отв: Re: Unit of Analysis



Aha! So we are not talking about a passive neonate. Whew.

Passibility is a new word for me, Michael. The OED's first two entries
appear to incompass both Ivan and your usage:

1. Chiefly *Theol.* The quality of being passible; capacity for suffering
or sensation.
2. Passiveness; inaction; sloth. *Obs.* *rare*.
To me, the addition of the word sensation to suffering broadens its meaning
significantly.

Recently a Russian colleague suggested to me that Spinoza's use of the term
passion would best be translated as perezhivanie. Certainly it bears a
relationship to the concept of perezhivanie as that term is used by
Vasiliuk.

mike

On Mon, Sep 11, 2017 at 10:49 AM, Wolff-Michael Roth <
wolffmichael.roth@gmail.com> wrote:

> Ivan, the word passive has some unfortunate connotation. The term
> passibility--the capacity to suffer--seems to come with a range of
> affordances (e.g., see my book *Passibility*).
>
> Michael
>
>
> 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
> <https://www.sensepublishers.com/catalogs/bookseries/new-
> directions-in-mathematics-and-science-education/the-
> mathematics-of-mathematics/>*
>
> On Mon, Sep 11, 2017 at 10:37 AM, Ivan Uemlianin <ivan@llaisdy.com> wrote:
>
> > Dear Sasha
> >
> > Passive as in driven by the passions. Isn't that how Spinoza would
> > characterise animals and infants?
> >
> > Ivan
> >
> > --
> > festina lente
> >
> >
> > > On 11 Sep 2017, at 18:05, Alexandre Sourmava <avramus@gmail.com>
> wrote:
> > >
> > > Dear Ivan.
> > >
> > > To say that "that the neo-nate is not active at all, but passive, and
> > that therefore neo-nate behaviour is not activity" means to say that neo
> > nate is not alive creature, but mechanic agregate of dead parts. And I am
> > not sure that idea about passiveness of animals or neo-nate fallows from
> > Spinoza :-).
> > >
> > > Sasha
> > >
> > >    扭抉扶快忱快抖抆扶我抗, 11 扼快扶找攸忌把攸 2017 18:07 Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net
> >
> > 扭我扼忘抖(忘):
> > >
> > >
> > > Yes, I think a further elaboration of this idea would lead
> > > to an examination of needs and activity and sensuousness in
> > > connection with needs and their development in connection
> > > with activity.
> > >
> > > Andy
> > >
> > > ------------------------------------------------------------
> > > Andy Blunden
> > > http://www.ethicalpolitics.org/ablunden/index.htm
> > >> On 12/09/2017 1:01 AM, Alfredo Jornet Gil wrote:
> > >>
> > >> Thanks Andy, the sense of 'visceral' is much more nuanced
> > >> in your text, yes, and quite different from what one could
> > >> grasp from the previous e-mail. And I now follow your
> > >> elaboration on micro- and macro-unit much better, so
> > >> thanks for that. I was hoping, however, that the
> > >> elaboration would lead to some acknowledgement of the role
> > >> of needs, real needs, as key to what the word 'visceral'
> > >> was suggesting here. I was thinking that rather than a
> > >> 'grasping', we gain more track by talking of an orienting,
> > >> which is how I read Marx and Engels, when Marx talks about
> > >> the significance of 'revolutionary', 'practical-critical'
> > >> activity, the fundamental fact of a need and its
> > >> connections to its production and satisfaction.
> > >>
> > >> A
> > >>
> > >> ------------------------------------------------------------
> > >> *From:* Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net>
> > >> *Sent:* 09 September 2017 03:30
> > >> *To:* Alfredo Jornet Gil; eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> > >> *Subject:* Re: [Xmca-l] Re: Unit of Analysis
> > >>
> > >> Yes, it is tough discussing these topics by email. All the
> > >> issues you raise are treated in
> > >> http://www.ethicalpolitics.org/ablunden/pdfs/Goethe-
> > Hegel-Marx_public.pdf
> > >>
> > >>
> > >> I am *not* dividing the world into 'immediate, bodily,
> > >> and sensuous' and 'mediated, disembodied, and a-sensuous'.
> > >> The whole point is to begin by *not* dividing. By contrast
> > >> for example, Newton explained natural processes (very
> > >> successfully!) by describing a number of "forces"; a force
> > >> is an example of something which is not visceral or
> > >> sensuous (and also not discrete so it can't be a 'unit').
> > >> The "expression" of a force can be visceral (think of the
> > >> effect of gravity) but gravity itself is an invention
> > >> needed to make a theory of physics work (like God's Will)
> > >> but has no content other than its expression. People got
> > >> by without it for millennia. This is not to say it does
> > >> not have a sound basis in material reality. But it is
> > >> abstract, in the sense that it exists only within the
> > >> framework of a theory, and cannot therefore provide a
> > >> starting point or foundation for a theory. To claim that a
> > >> force exists is to reify an abstraction from a form of
> > >> movement (constant acceleration between two bodies).
> > >> Goethe called his method "delicate empiricism" but this is
> > >> something quite different from the kind of empiricism
> > >> which uncritically accepts theory-laden perceptions,
> > >> discovers patterns in these perceptions and then reifies
> > >> these patterns in forces and such abstractions.
> > >>
> > >>
> > >> If you don't know about climatology then you can't guess
> > >> the unit of analysis. Marx took from 1843 to about 1858 to
> > >> determine a unit of analysis for economics. Vygotsky took
> > >> from about 1924 to 1931 to determine a unit of analysis
> > >> for intellect. And both these characters studied their
> > >> field obsessively during that interval. This is why I
> > >> insist that the unit of analysis is a *visceral concept*
> > >> unifying a series of phenomena, something which gets to
> > >> the heart of a process, and which therefore comes only
> > >> through prolonged study, not something which is generated
> > >> by some formula with a moment's reflection.
> > >>
> > >>
> > >> Each unit is the foundation of an entire science. But both
> > >> Marx's Capital and Vygotsky's T&S identify a micro-unit
> > >> but quickly move on to the real phenomenon of interest -
> > >> capital and concepts respectively. But capital (which
> > >> makes its appearance in chapter 4) cannot be understood
> > >> without having first identified the real substance of
> > >> value in the commodity. The rest of the book then proceeds
> > >> on the basis of this unit, capital (i.e., a unit of
> > >> capital, a firm). To ignore capital is to depict bourgeois
> > >> society as a society of simple commodity exchange among
> > >> equals - a total fiction. Likewise, Vygotsky's real aim it
> > >> to elucidate the nature and development of concepts. He
> > >> does not say it, and probably does not himself see it, but
> > >> "concept" is a macro-unit (or molar unit in ANL's term),
> > >> an aggregate of actions centred on a symbol or other
> > >> artefact. The whole point of introducing the cell into
> > >> biology was to understand the behaviour of *organisms*,
> > >> not for the sake of creating the science of cell biology,
> > >> though this was a side benefit of the discovery.
> > >>
> > >>
> > >> Andy
> > >>
> > >> ------------------------------------------------------------
> > >> Andy Blunden
> > >> http://www.ethicalpolitics.org/ablunden/index.htm
> > >>> On 9/09/2017 5:31 AM, Alfredo Jornet Gil wrote:
> > >>>
> > >>> Andy, thanks for your clarification on the 'visceral'.
> > >>> The way you describe it, though, suggests to me an
> > >>> empiricist position that I know you do not ascribe to;
> > >>> and so I'll take it that either I've missed the correct
> > >>> reading, or that we are still developing language to talk
> > >>> about this. In any case, I assume you do not mean that
> > >>> whatever our object of study is, it is divided between
> > >>> the visceral as the 'immediate, bodily, and sensuous' and
> > >>> something else that, by implication, may have been said
> > >>> to be 'mediated, disembodied, and a-sensuous' (you may as
> > >>> well mean precisely this, I am not sure).
> > >>>
> > >>>
> > >>> I do not know what the climatologist's unit of analysis
> > >>> is when discussing hurricanes either, but I do think that
> > >>> Hurricanes Irma, Jos谷, etc, are expressions of a system
> > >>> in a very similar way that any psychological fact is a
> > >>> expression of the society as part of which it occurs. I
> > >>> was thinking that, if we assumed for a second that we
> > >>> know what the unit for studying of hurricanes is (some
> > >>> concrete relation between climate or environment and
> > >>> hurricane), 'feeling' the hurricane could be thought of
> > >>> in may ways, only some of which may be helpful to advance
> > >>> our scientific understanding of human praxis. The way you
> > >>> seemed to refer to this 'visceral' aspect, as 'immediate,
> > >>> embodied, and sensous' would make things hard, because,
> > >>> are we 'feeling' the hurricane, or the wind blowing our
> > >>> roofs away? In fact, is it the wind at all, or the many
> > >>> micro particles of soil and other matter that are
> > >>> smashing our skin as the hurricane passes above us, too
> > >>> big, too complex, to be 'felt' in any way that captures
> > >>> it all? And so, if your object of study is to be 'felt',
> > >>> I don't think the definition of 'immediate, embodied, and
> > >>> sensuous' helps unless we mean it WITHOUT it being the
> > >>> opposite to 'mediated, disembodied, and a-sensuous'.
> > >>> That is, if we do not oppose the immediate to the
> > >>> mediated in the sense just implied (visceral is immediate
> > >>> vs. 'not-visceral' is mediated). So, I am arguing in
> > >>> favour of the claim that we need to have this visceral
> > >>> relation that you mention, but I do think that we require
> > >>> a much more sophisticated definition of 'visceral' than
> > >>> the one that the three words already mentioned allow
> > >>> for. I do 'feel' that in most of his later works,
> > >>> Vygotsky was very concerned on emphasising the unity of
> > >>> intellect and affect as the most important problem for
> > >>> psychology for precisely this reason.
> > >>>
> > >>>
> > >>> I have also my reservations with the distinction that you
> > >>> draw in your e-mail between micro-unit and macro-unit. If
> > >>> the question is the production of awareness, of the
> > >>> 'experience of having a mind' that you are discussing
> > >>> with Michael, then we have to find just one unit, not
> > >>> two, not one micro and one macro. I am of course not
> > >>> saying that one unit addresses all the problems one can
> > >>> pose for psychology. But I do think that the very idea of
> > >>> unit analysis implies that it constitutes your field of
> > >>> inquiry for a particular problem (you've written about
> > >>> this). You ask about Michael's mind, and Michael responds
> > >>> that his mind is but one expression of a society.I would
> > >>> add that whatever society is as a whole, it lives as
> > >>> consciousness in and through each and every single one of
> > >>> our consciousness; if so, the unit Vygotsky was
> > >>> suggesting, the one denoting the unity of person and
> > >>> situation, seems to me well suited; not a micro-unit that
> > >>> is micro with respect to the macro-activity.
> > >>>
> > >>>
> > >>> If you take the Spinozist position that 'a true idea must
> > >>> agree with that of which it is the idea', and then agree
> > >>> with Vygotsky that ideas are not intellect on the one
> > >>> hand, and affect on the other, but a very special
> > >>> relation (a unity) between the two, then we need a notion
> > >>> of 'visceral and sensous' that is adequate to our 'idea'
> > >>> or field of inquiry. We can then ask questions about the
> > >>> affects of phenomena, of hurricanes, for example, as
> > >>> Latour writes about the 'affects of capitalism'. And we
> > >>> would do so without implying an opposition between
> > >>> the feeling and the felt, but some production process
> > >>> that accounts for both. Perezhivanie then, in my view, is
> > >>> not so much about experience as it is about human
> > >>> situations; historical events, which happen to have some
> > >>> individual people having them as inherent part of their
> > >>> being precisely that: historical events (a mindless or
> > >>> totally unconscious event would not be historical).
> > >>>
> > >>>
> > >>> I am no fun of frightening away people in the list with
> > >>> too long posts like this one, but I think the issue is
> > >>> complex and requires some elaboration. I hope xmca is
> > >>> also appreciated for allowing going deep into questions
> > >>> that otherwise seem to alway remain elusive.
> > >>>
> > >>>
> > >>> Alfredo
> > >>>
> > >>>
> > >>>
> > >>> ------------------------------------------------------------
> > >>> *From:* Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net>
> > >>> *Sent:* 08 September 2017 04:11
> > >>> *To:* Alfredo Jornet Gil; eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> > >>> *Subject:* Re: [Xmca-l] Re: Unit of Analysis
> > >>>
> > >>> Alfredo, by "visceral" I mean it is something you know
> > >>> through your immediate, bodily and sensuous interaction
> > >>> with something. In this sense I am with Lakoff and
> > >>> Johnson here (though not being American I don't see guns
> > >>> as quite so fundamental to the human condition). Consider
> > >>> what Marx did when began Capital not from the abstract
> > >>> concept of "value" but from the action of exchanging
> > >>> commodities . Commodity exchange is just one form of
> > >>> value, but it is the most ancient, most visceral, most
> > >>> "real" and most fundamental form of value - as Marx shows
> > >>> in s. 3 of Chapter 1, v. I.
> > >>>
> > >>> I have never studied climatology, Alfredo, to the extent
> > >>> of grasping what their unit of analysis is.
> > >>>
> > >>> In any social system, including classroom activity, the
> > >>> micro-unit is an artefact-mediated action and the
> > >>> macro-units are the activities. That is the basic CHAT
> > >>> approach. But that is far from the whole picture isn't
> > >>> it? What chronotope determines classroom activity - are
> > >>> we training people to be productive workers or are we
> > >>> participating in social movements or are we engaged in
> > >>> transforming relations of domination in the classroom or
> > >>> are we part of a centuries-old struggle to understand and
> > >>> change the world? The action/activity just gives us one
> > >>> range of insights, but we might analyse the classroom
> > >>> from different perspectives.
> > >>>
> > >>> Andy
> > >>>
> > >>> ------------------------------------------------------------
> > >>> Andy Blunden
> > >>> http://www.ethicalpolitics.org/ablunden/index.htm
> > >>> https://andyblunden.academia.edu/research
> > >>>> On 8/09/2017 7:58 AM, Alfredo Jornet Gil wrote:
> > >>>> I am very curious about what "visceral" means here (Andy), and
> > particularly how that relates to the 'interrelations' that David D. is
> > mentioning, and that on the 'perspective of the researcher'.
> > >>>>
> > >>>> I was thinking of the Hurricanes going on now as the expressions of
> a
> > system, one that sustains category 5 hurricanes in *this* particulars
> ways
> > that are called Irma, Jos谷, etc. How the 'visceral' relation may be like
> > when the object is a physical system (a hurricane and the climate system
> > that sustains it), and when it is a social system (e.g., a classroom
> > conflict and the system that sustains it).
> > >>>>
> > >>>> Alfredo
> > >>>> ________________________________________
> > >>>> From:xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu  <xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.
> > edu>  on behalf of David Dirlam<modesofpractice@gmail.com>
> > >>>> Sent: 07 September 2017 19:41
> > >>>> To: Andy Blunden; eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> > >>>> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: Unit of Analysis
> > >>>>
> > >>>> The issues that have arisen in this discussion clarify the
> conception
> > of
> > >>>> what sort of entity a "unit" is. Both and Andy and Martin stress the
> > >>>> importance of the observer. Anyone with some experience should have
> > some
> > >>>> sense of it (Martin's point). But Andy added the notion that experts
> > need
> > >>>> basically to be able to agree reliably on examples of the unit
> > (worded like
> > >>>> the psychological researcher I am, but I'm sure Andy will correct me
> > if I
> > >>>> missed his meaning).
> > >>>>
> > >>>> We also need to address two other aspects of units--their
> > classifiability
> > >>>> and the types of relations between them. What makes water not an
> > element,
> > >>>> but a compound, are the relations between the subunits (the chemical
> > bonds
> > >>>> between the elements) as well as those with other molecules of water
> > (how
> > >>>> fast they travel relative to each other), which was David Kellogg's
> > point.
> > >>>> So the analogy to activity is that it is like the molecule, while
> > actions
> > >>>> are like the elements. What is new to this discussion is that the
> > activity
> > >>>> must contain not only actions, but also relationships between them.
> > If we
> > >>>> move up to the biological realm, we find a great increase in the
> > complexity
> > >>>> of the analogy. Bodies are made up of more than cells, and I'm not
> > just
> > >>>> referring to entities like extracellular fluid. The identifiability,
> > >>>> classification, and interrelations between cells and their
> > constituents all
> > >>>> help to make the unit so interesting to science. Likewise, the
> > constituents
> > >>>> of activities are more than actions. Yrjo's triangles illustrate
> that.
> > >>>> Also, we need to be able to identify an activity, classify
> > activities, and
> > >>>> discern the interrelations between them and their constituents.
> > >>>>
> > >>>> I think that is getting us close to David Kellogg's aim of
> > characterizing
> > >>>> the meaning of unit. But glad, like him, to read corrections.
> > >>>>
> > >>>> David
> > >>>>
> > >>>>> On Wed, Sep 6, 2017 at 10:08 PM, Andy Blunden<ablunden@mira.net>
> > wrote:
> > >>>>>
> > >>>>> Yes, but I think, Martin, that the unit of analysis we need to
> > aspire to
> > >>>>> is *visceral* and sensuous. There are "everyday" concepts which are
> > utterly
> > >>>>> abstract and saturated with ideology and received knowledge. For
> > example,
> > >>>>> Marx's concept of capital is buying-in-order-to-sell, which is not
> > the
> > >>>>> "everyday" concept of capital at all, of course.
> > >>>>>
> > >>>>> Andy
> > >>>>>
> > >>>>> ------------------------------------------------------------
> > >>>>> Andy Blunden
> > >>>>> http://www.ethicalpolitics.org/ablunden/index.htm
> > >>>>> https://andyblunden.academia.edu/research
> > >>>>>
> > >>>>>> On 7/09/2017 8:48 AM, Martin John Packer wrote:
> > >>>>>>
> > >>>>>> Isn*t a unit of analysis (a germ cell) a preliminary concept, one
> > might
> > >>>>>> say an everyday concept, that permits one to grasp the phenomenon
> > that is
> > >>>>>> to be studied in such a way that it can be elaborated, in the
> > course of
> > >>>>>> investigation, into an articulated and explicit scientific
> concept?
> > >>>>>>
> > >>>>>> just wondering
> > >>>>>>
> > >>>>>> Martin
> > >>>>>>
> > >>>>>>
> > >>>>>> On Sep 6, 2017, at 5:15 PM, Greg Thompson<greg.a.thompson@
> gmail.com
> > >
> > >>>>>>> wrote:
> > >>>>>>>
> > >>>>>>> Not sure if others might feel this is an oversimplification of
> > unit of
> > >>>>>>> analysis, but I just came across this in Wortham and Kim's
> > Introduction
> > >>>>>>> to
> > >>>>>>> the volume Discourse and Education and found it useful. The short
> > of it
> > >>>>>>> is
> > >>>>>>> that the unit of analysis is the unit that "preserves the
> > >>>>>>> essential features of the whole".
> > >>>>>>>
> > >>>>>>> Here is their longer explanation:
> > >>>>>>>
> > >>>>>>> "Marx (1867/1986) and Vygotsky (1934/1987) apply the concept
> "unit
> > of
> > >>>>>>> analysis" to social scientific problems. In their account, an
> > adequate
> > >>>>>>> approach to any phenomenon must find the right unit of analysis -
> > one
> > >>>>>>> that
> > >>>>>>> preserves the essential features of the whole. In order to study
> > water, a
> > >>>>>>> scientist must not break the substance down below the level of an
> > >>>>>>> individual H20 molecule. Water is made up of nothing but hydrogen
> > and
> > >>>>>>> oxygen, but studying hydrogen and oxygen separately will not
> > illuminate
> > >>>>>>> the
> > >>>>>>> essential properties of water. Similarly, meaningful language use
> > >>>>>>> requires
> > >>>>>>> a unit of analysis that includes aspects beyond phonology,
> > >>>>>>> grammar, semantics, and mental representations. All of these
> > linguistic
> > >>>>>>> and
> > >>>>>>> psychological factors play a role in linguistic communication,
> but
> > >>>>>>> natural
> > >>>>>>> language use also involves social action in a context that
> > includes other
> > >>>>>>> actors and socially significant regularities."
> > >>>>>>>
> > >>>>>>> (entire chapter can be found on Research Gate at:
> > >>>>>>> https://www.researchgate.net/publication/319322253_Introduct
> > >>>>>>> ion_to_Discourse_and_Education
> > >>>>>>> )
> > >>>>>>>
> > >>>>>>> I thought that the water/H20 metaphor was a useful one for
> thinking
> > >>>>>>> about
> > >>>>>>> unit of analysis.
> > >>>>>>>
> > >>>>>>> -greg
> > >>>>>>>
> > >>>>>>> --
> > >>>>>>> Gregory A. Thompson, Ph.D.
> > >>>>>>> Assistant Professor
> > >>>>>>> Department of Anthropology
> > >>>>>>> 880 Spencer W. Kimball Tower
> > >>>>>>> Brigham Young University
> > >>>>>>> Provo, UT 84602
> > >>>>>>> WEBSITE: greg.a.thompson.byu.edu
> > >>>>>>> http://byu.academia.edu/GregoryThompson
> > >>>>>>>
> > >>>>>
> > >>>
> > >>
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> >
> >
> >
>