[xmca] How is Microgenesis Different From Learning?

From: David Kellogg <vaughndogblack who-is-at yahoo.com>
Date: Mon Jul 07 2008 - 16:58:30 PDT

This seems like a dumb question, but it flickers in front of my eyes when I try to read the article for discussion.
How is microgenesis (or logogenesis, to use the Hallidayan terminology) different from learning?
Being a rather lazy thinker, I spent a number of years thinking that microgenesis is just a fancy name for learning, in the same way that ontogenesis is nothing but a Greek word for the more Latinate "development".
Now I know better. As the name suggests, it is a microcosm of development, a miniature longitudinal study in ontogenesis, and of course development is revolutionary and qualitative in a way that learning is not. I also know that the relationship between learning and development has to be indirect, while the relationship between microgenesis and ontogenesis has to be direct. Finally, I have a sense that microgenesis is in some way intra-mental and restructional and transfomationalatory while learning is more inter-mental and communicationary and transactionalizing (to coin a phrase). 
But then I'm stuck. I can't think of a single example that shows a clear difference. And until I do,  the distinction is just empty verbalism to me. I know it's there but I can't picture it..
David Kellogg
Seoul National University of Education
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Received on Mon Jul 7 17:00 PDT 2008

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