Re: FW: [xmca] Wells article

From: <ERIC.RAMBERG who-is-at>
Date: Wed Oct 10 2007 - 06:24:28 PDT


Would you like to qualitify that?


                      Paul Dillon
                      <phd_crit_think@ To: "eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity" <>
            > cc:
                      Sent by: Subject: Re: FW: [xmca] Wells article
                      10/10/2007 06:49
                      Please respond
                      to "eXtended
                      Mind, Culture,


  well, ok.

  the quality of being a suject?????

   expeealdochiouscalafragilstic, is a word too right??


Anton Yasnitsky <> wrote:
  Dear Paul,

sorry to say, but "subjectness", according to Webster 1913, in fact IS the
word in the English language:



Dear Sasha,

many thanks for your concise yet remarkably thorough and clear comment on
such sophisticated issues!

--- Paul Dillon

> Sasha,
> I'm confused. I don't know what you mean by "subjectness" since this
> isn't a word in the English language. As such, the three dimensions of
> it remain beyond my ken.
> Paul
> Alexander Surmava wrote:
> Paul,
> I'm afraid that in understanding of nature of subjectness we are taking
> the
> problem from radically different perspectives. I distinguish between
> three
> categories: subjectness, subjectivness, and personality(ness).
> Subjectness
> occur in specific, organic or alive form of interaction, it is (along
> with
> the object positioned by him) an attribute of object-oriented activity.
> It
> doesn't coincide with subjectivness and even less with consciousness or
> personality. Abstract subjectness is a characteristic of activity of
> unicellular organisms or plants. Subjectivness is an attribute of
> multicellular organic activity, selfsensation or abstract zoopsyche. On
> this
> level we have a special type of object-oriented activity, which is
> necessarily mediated by selfdirected, or reflexive activity. It means
> that a
> multicellular animal can act according the objective shape of its
> object, or
> more exactly according to the shape of objective field, only in case if
> subactive organs of this animal are acting against each other. Taking an
> apple from the tree I can't act as a solid, indivisible, unilaterally
> directed "activity", but as an alive activity, as an activity which can
> touch the apple and can withdraw my hand from it. Such type of activity
> is
> something substantially contrary to mechanic movement and can be
> realized by
> complicated system of subactive muscles acting one against another.
> Finally the consciousness occur only in human object oriented activity
> mediated by another person. Human personality appears only in case when
> (minimum) two human beings are solving a common objective task in other
> words they conjointly act against their common object and realize it in
> active hand in hand and in the same time contradictory interaction. Here
> we
> have a new, higher level of reflexivity and selfconsciousness as it is.
> All
> this was formulated in Dialectical psychology as an attempt to overcome
> a
> great number of Cartesian contradictions in classical CHAT - in LSV and
> ANL.
> Thus Leont'ev insists that he formulates materialistic Theory of
> activity,
> and in the same time interprets activity as some magic process which is
> wedging between mechanical stimulus and mechanical reaction. Vygotsky
> from
> his side tries to liberate a human being from mechanical
> Stimulus-Reactive
> determinism applying to so called cultural sign. In the same time he
> fails
> to explain how totally mechanical marionette can invent this sign and
> how
> the meaning of this sign can interact with wooden marionette.
> As for the real way to muster concept (Begriff) I think that much more
> productive than Hegel's speculative formalisms, will be an attempt to
> elaborate a new form of old Marxist idea of integration of learning and
> productive labour.
> When Luria asked illiterated Uzbek peasants to exclude something
> unnecessary
> from a group including irrigation ditch or "aryk", soil, spade and
> melon,
> they vigorously refuse to do such a stupid choice because everything in
> the
> list is necessary to grow melon. Vygotsky commented the situation so
> that
> those peasants has not scientific concept but still type of "complex"
> thinking while literate children, having school experience and solved
> this
> task easily are closer to scientific type of thinking.
> Let's wonder: who - the experienced (but alas illiterate) Uzbek peasant
> or
> verbal schoolchild is closer to real comprehension of melon cultivation,
> is
> closer to real concept (Begriff)? The question I think is quite
> rhetoric.
> Evidently, a modern student can hardly acquire say differential
> calculus, or
> theoretic psychology in abstract praxis. But as evident is that the
> first
> step to real Begriff is the spontaneous active movement meeting an
> opposition of a real object.
> Cheers,
> Sasha
> -----Original Message-----
> From: []
> On
> Behalf Of Paul Dillon
> Sent: Tuesday, October 09, 2007 5:09 AM
> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> Subject: RE: [xmca] Wells article
> Sasha,
> Thanks for the detailed reply to my queries.
> I totally agree that the subject-object distinction cannot be reduced to
> the active/passive (yin/yang) distinction. But I can also state from
> experiences with a certain type of Mexican sage (salvia divinorum) that
> body
> consciousness can disolve completely (inability to locate or more legs,
> arms, or any other part of the body) while "experience" continues, but
> withou any possibility of sustaining or identifying the locus (even
> imaginary) of a sense of personal "ownership of or identification with
> the
> experience itself-the possibility of even talking about it being
> something
> like the concept of Vorstellung you describe in your response, and
> neither
> can the thoughts accompanying the experience be separated from the
> experience itself (no, noema-noeisis distinction to use Husserl's
> terminology) since the boundaries of subject/object constantly change
> into
> each other, much like the description of Being and Nothing in the first
> part
> of Hegel's Logic. The anthropologist Michael Taussig has described this
> state both in relationship to the experience of being torture (resulting
> in
> the Stockholm syndrome) and to the ayahuasca (banesteriopsis caapi)
> experience which is central to Amazonian shamanism. Very similar at the
> experiential level to Hegel's descriptionn of "fear of death" in the
> section on the Master-Slave dialectic in the Phenomenology of Mind.
> But that brings up the adequacy of your identification of receiving the
> bridge's blow as evidence of some subjectivity. I think it comes down to
> the forms in which consciousness becomes domesticated into some form of
> regularity/normalcy which is of course necessary for biological survival
> but might have nothing at all to do with the real structure of the
> conscious
> experience out of which our normalized experience of "reality" -- the
> experience of the bridge's blow or a tooth ache as happening to "me" --
> has
> been cultivated through the process of our socialization.
> Your explanation of the Vorstellung-Begriff relationship is more or less
> how I understood it. Your use of the teaching example especially
> approrpite
> since every honest teacher knows that it's one thing to have learned
> something as a student and another thing to have to teach it. Multiple
> choice tests probe that parrot like ability to repeat information
> (Vorstellung) and there are lots of A students who can't demonstrate
> much
> understanding about the material upon probing - but to be able to teach
> about some object/field, not just stand in front of a class likewise
> parroting, something student's can pick up on quickly, but to be able to
> answer totally unexpected questions to the student's satisfaction,
> requires
> the ability to get into the "Begriff", right??, and thereby be able to
> adapt the presentation of the "object" to different contexts and
> cricumstances raised in the question or illustrate that the question
> doesn't
> really fit the object. In this vein, doesn't
> hegel arrive to the concept(Begriff) after discussing the sublation of
> the
> ground (Grund) in which it appears?
=== message truncated ===

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Received on Wed Oct 10 06:26 PDT 2007

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