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RE: [xmca] Intensions in context and speech complexity ; From 2-?
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- Subject: RE: [xmca] Intensions in context and speech complexity ; From 2-?
- From: "Jones, Peter" <P.E.Jones@shu.ac.uk>
- Date: Tue, 21 Jul 2009 10:25:04 +0100
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- Thread-topic: [xmca] Intensions in context and speech complexity ; From 2-?
Just a quick reaction as a coda. Totally agree re developmental standpoint but the question I think here is what it is we think that is developing. The language internalization view predisposes us to see 'what is developing' from a particular point of view, whereas if we look at the problem of linguistic activity (and the integration of communicative activity into one's life activity) differently then something else may emerge. Possibly in the 'say after me game' this is a more an issue of how the child contextualises the linguistic activity (ie how a particular sort of activity is seen as being 'the game') than about 'grammatical complexity' in the linguistic sense. Furthermore, I think the dynamic integration of communicative and practical activity by people in real contexts precludes any kind of in principle correlation between kinds of activity and 'level of grammatical complexity' such that from one we can predict the other or vice versa - cf the list of imponderables you mention at the end about situations and control etc.
From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:email@example.com] On Behalf Of Mike Cole
Sent: 20 July 2009 17:21
To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
Subject: Re: [xmca] Intensions in context and speech complexity ; From 2-?
Ok. So speaking is a part of activity.
But please explain the result of the difference between the two kinds of
activities that generate
two levels of grammatical complexity in activity-theoretic terms for me
and/or performance terms.
It is not just that the performances in the two situations are different.
They are different in a way
that is clearly linked to the language/thought/language game/life worlds,
etc. related to the different
situations vis a vis who is controlling the situation, who has the power,
whose/what intentions are being
Little ones CANNOT play the game of "say after me." Later they can play this
game. I do not believe that
invoking internalization is necessary or helpful, Peter, but I do think that
an explanation not only of the difference but of the
chronological, and dare I say it, developmental, difference requires
explanation. I further believe that what
David Kel has been writing is relevant to this issue and that it is related
to issues of language teaching/learning
I appear an outlier here and will drop the issue. Thanks everyone for your
efforts to penetrate my opaqueness.
On another (who knows, maybe even related!) matter. The polls for the new
article in MCA remain open. Brenda
is away this week and she mediates posting of abstracts and contacting the
publishers to make the winning
candidate for discussion available. So I will keep the polls open until,
probably, next Tuesday. But please take
a minute to check the polls and vote.
On Mon, Jul 20, 2009 at 9:11 AM, Mike Cole <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
> On Mon, Jul 20, 2009 at 9:05 AM, Lois Holzman <
> email@example.com> wrote:
>> This formulation of the question is clarifying, Mike, and helps me realize
>> that I can't answer it-
>> because it is asking something in terms that frame the thing that's going
>> on in a particular way that, to me, is too assumptive.
>> I don't see it in terms of external constraints, intentions and goals - I
>> don't have a mentalistic understanding of the social relational activity of
>> speaking, creating conversation, playing with language.
>> I can't see what is gained by invoking compliance, imposition,
>> limitations, intentions and goals, and I feel that doing so obscures the
>> "form of life"-ness. I'm with Wittgenstein on this - speaking is part of an
>> activity, or of a form of life."
>> An experimenter asking a child to "say what I say" is a particular
>> language game, and the same child talking/babbling in another situation is
>> another. If I understand, you're trying to find a reason that what the child
>> says is different in the two. I guess I wonder why you think they wouldn't
>> be. And why the direction to look is "internal."
>> Lois Holzman, Director
>> East Side Institute for Group and Short Term Psychotherapy
>> 920 Broadway, 14th floor
>> New York NY 10010
>> tel. 212.941.8906 ext. 324
>> fax 212.941.0511
>> On Jul 20, 2009, at 10:56 AM, Mike Cole wrote:
>> Andy/David/ Lois:
>>> Why are the simplifications when children imitate sentences that carry
>>> the intentions of others and limit their agency to
>>> complying with external constraints imposed by others absent when they
>>> out their own intentions in speech acts that are instrumental to carrying
>>> out those goals and may be more complicated, grammatically, than what
>>> experimenters ask of them? I get the dropping out the subject part in
>>> speech, I think.
>>> On Sun, Jul 19, 2009 at 10:30 PM, Andy Blunden <firstname.lastname@example.org>
>>> Mike, my reading of Vygotsky's explanation of the process of speech
>>>> abbreviated as it transforms into silent speech, as I recall, is that
>>>> child for example leaves off the subject of a sentence for example,
>>>> they already know the subject, and such like. I.e., as I read it, they
>>>> dense elements of context internally so that the verbal instruction to
>>>> themselves carries that context implicitly. Just like if I say "Pass me
>>>> that" the hearer won't understand without the help of a shared visual
>>>> So intention is part of the context, but it is the context, and it's
>>>> various mental representations and cues which is relevant, isn't it?
>>>> So for example, the continued presence of all the elements of a snippet
>>>> dialogue act as cues which would allow something to be repeated, because
>>>> entire act in response to cues in the context can be repeated.
>>>> But also, relevant to a topic we have been discussing, Mike, the project
>>>> which the speech act is a part has to be understood and shared by the
>>>> if they are to make sense of it, and of course psychological testing is
>>>> generally such a project.
>>>> I don't really know if that's relevant to the distinction you're after
>>>> Mike Cole wrote:
>>>> David's note of a few days ago on 3-7 year old changes in egocentric
>>>>> me of an old article by Slobin and Welch (reprinted in Ferguson and
>>>>> *Studies of Child Development, 1963)
>>>>> *that it took a while to track down. The study is often cited in
>>>>> elicited imitation where an adult says some
>>>>> sentence and asks a little kid to repeat it. Kids simplify the sentence
>>>>> normal circumstances ("Where is the kitty"
>>>>> becomes "where kitty") and other such stuff. There is a pretty large
>>>>> literature on this.
>>>>> But when I went to find the phenomenon in the article that had most
>>>>> me, I could not find it in the recent lit
>>>>> on elicited imitation. The phenomenon seems relevant to the monologic,
>>>>> dialogic etc speech discussion.
>>>>> The phenomenon is this: When a 2yr/5month old child is recorded saying
>>>>> you finish your eggs all up, Daddy, you
>>>>> can have your coffee." they can repeat this sentence pretty much as it
>>>>> right afterward. But 10 minutes later it has
>>>>> become simplified a la the usual observation.
>>>>> Citing William James (the child has an "intention to say so and so")
>>>>> and Welch remark:
>>>>> If that linguistic form is presented for imitation while the intention
>>>>> still operative, it can be faily successfully imitated. Once the
>>>>> is gone, however, the utterance must be processed in linguistic terms
>>>>> -- without its original intentional and
>>>>> contextual support." In the absence of such support, the task can
>>>>> the child's abilities and reveal a more limited competence than may
>>>>> be present in spontaneous speech (p. 489-90).
>>>>> This kind of observation seems relevant in various ways both to
>>>>> acquisition in school settings and to my reccurrent
>>>>> questions about the social situation of development. Is it relevant to
>>>>> discussion of egocentric and social speech, David?
>>>>> xmca mailing list
>>>> Andy Blunden (Erythrós Press and Media) http://www.erythrospress.com/
>>>> Orders: http://www.erythrospress.com/store/main.html#books
>>>> xmca mailing list
>>> xmca mailing list
>> xmca mailing list
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