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on definition Re: [xmca] Communication/social relations/obshenie

On Sun, 22 Nov 2009, mike cole wrote:

Again, in every case of "definition" we have (a largely unexplicated,
because you can never say everything about anything) a large,
pre-supposed set of theoretical assumptions about the processes being

On definition, here's Nietzsche:

"all concepts in which an entire process is semiotically concentrated defy definition; only something which has no history can be defined"

Nietzsche made that observation in the context of inquiring into the meaning [_Sinn_] of "punishment":

"With regard to the [fluid] element in punishment, . . . its 'meaning', the concept 'punishment' presents . . . not just one meaning but a whole synthesis of 'meanings' [_Sinnen_]: the history of punishment up to now in general, the history of its use for a variety of purposes, finally crystallizes[*] in a kind of unity which is difficult to dissolve back into its elements, difficult to analyse and, this has to be stressed, is absolutely _undefinable_."

pp. 52-53 in Nietzsche, Friedrich. _On the Genealogy of Morality_. Translated by Carol Diethe. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2007.
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