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Re: [xmca] Where is thinking - con't from Tony

A word is dead
      When it is said
    Some say.
 I say it just
 Begins to live
   That day.
       --Emily Dickinson

On Sun, 19 Apr 2009, Mike Cole wrote:

To shorten the string of trailing messages and focus on just one of the
interesting responses:

From: Tony Whitson <twhitson@udel.edu>
Date: Sat, Apr 18, 2009 at 5:44 PM
Subject: Re: [xmca] Where is thinking?
To: mcole@weber.ucsd.edu, "eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity" <

For what it's worth:

Thought is what it is only by virtue of its addressing a future thought
which is in its value as thought identical with it, though more developed.
In this way, the existence of thought now depends on what is to be
hereafter; so that it has only a potential existence, dependent on the
future thought of the community.

No present actual thought (which is [in itself] a mere feeling) has any
meaning, any intellectual value; for this lies not in what is actually
thought, but in what this thought may be connected with in representation by
subsequent thoughts, so that the meaning of a thought is altogether
something virtual.

Accordingly, just as we say that a body is in motion, and not that motion is
in a body, we ought to say that we are in thought, and not that thoughts are
in us.

-- Charles Peirce, Writings 2: 241,227,227
Reading this puts me strongly in mind of the epigram of the chapter 7 of
Thinking and Speech, "I forgot the word I wanted to say, and thought,
unembodied, returned to the hall of shadows."

Locally a couple of us have been re-re-re-visiting this idea and what seems
to us an incompleteness that is picked up by Pierce and which relates to the
relationship between
imagining and creating as well as sense and meaning. For LSV the
externalized thought-in-word completes the thought, providing the "most
stable zone of sense." But we were focused
on the hearer of the utterance and how it was then interpreted and
subsequently given further life or not as very important..... the later
history of what Vygotsky called the embodied thought.

I fear the invitations to confusion in all the inside/outside invocations in
what we are quoting and composing.

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Tony Whitson
UD School of Education
NEWARK  DE  19716


"those who fail to reread
 are obliged to read the same story everywhere"
                  -- Roland Barthes, S/Z (1970)
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