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[Xmca-l] Re: sense, meaning and inner aspect of word

That makes sense to me (pardon the pun). "You" is a good way of explaining it.
I *must* study "Marxism and the Philosophy of Language"!
It makes a lot more sense to me that Vygotsky would be appropriating Voloshinov than Paulhan or Shpet, quite honestly. So, he was "edited out" was he?!


*Andy Blunden*

David Kellogg wrote:
The weird thing, Andy, is that Paulhan never said any such thing. Vygotsky's referring to Paulhan's essay "Qu'est-ce que le sens des mots?" where Paulhan, who is a Christian minister and not to be confused with his well known philosopher father, simply takes the banal view that words have connotations as well as denotations. Paulhan becomes extremely distressed when he tries to explain what the denotation of a phrase like "inexpressible in words" is, and gives up. When he tackles the whole question at book length, he uses completely different categories of analysis.

I have always believed, and now I am quite sure, that this section of Thinking and Speech originally referred to Volosinov's distinction between "thema" and "meaning", from "Marxism and the Philosophy of Language". "Thema" is the concrete sense that a word has in a specific situation: it is what "you" means when I use it to refer to Andy Blundent. "Meaning" is all the potential meanings that a word might have, considered abstractly: it is what "you" means in the dictionary, in general, as a potential way of addressing every single or group of humans on earth. All words have both, but some have more of one and others have more of the other (e.g. proper nouns have more Theme and common nouns more meaning; verbs, which are all common verbs in the sense that we don't try to pretend that actions are once-occurent, are more Theme when they are tensed and more Meaning when they are infinitive).

Lucien Seve confirms that Vygotsky was a close reader of Volosinov, particularly in the last few years when both were teaching at Herzen Pedagogical Institute in Leningrad (and both were dying of tuberculosis). Vygotsky's references to Volosinov were all edited out of his works.

David Kellogg
Hankuk University of Foreign Studies

On 27 January 2015 at 14:16, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net <mailto:ablunden@mira.net>> wrote:

    Larry, this question (the meaning of "the inner aspect of a word,
    its meaning" has come up before, and I think not satisfactorily
    I did a search on "Thinking and Speech" for all the uses of the
    word "inner". 283 of the 329 of them are "inner speech" and all
    the others are referring to mental or psychological, and then
    there's "inner aspect of a word."
    The related term is "sense," and in Chapter 7, citing Paulhan
    apparently with approval, he says:

       "First, in inner speech, we find a predominance of the word’s sense
       over its meaning. Paulhan significantly advanced the psychological
       analysis of speech by introducing the distinction between a word’s
       sense and meaning. A word’s sense is the aggregate of all the
       psychological facts that arise in our consciousness as a result of
       the word. Sense is a dynamic, fluid, and complex formation
    which has
       several zones that vary in their stability. Meaning is only one of
       these zones of the sense that the word acquires in the context of
       speech. It is the most stable, unified, and precise of these

    So a word's sense is the *totality* of "*all* the psychological
    facts that arise in our consciousness as a result of the word."
    But meaning (i.e., I suggest, "sense") "is only *one of these
    zones" of the sense that the word acquires in the context of speech."
    So the inner aspect of the word is *part* of the totality of the
    psychological facts that arise as a result of the word.
    Specifically, it is what we intend, or "the most stable, unified,
    and precise of these zones," whereas in uttering the word there
    are all sorts of associated feelings etc., which are not "meant"
    but are part of the sense nonetheless.



    *Andy Blunden*

    Larry Purss wrote:

        I am referring to chapter 9 in the book "The Cambridge
        Companion to
        Here is the link to google books


        Henry, what is "inner form" ? The answer to this is very
        complicated and
        includes exploring the relation of "sense and meaning"  II
        would recommend
        getting the book from a library as every chapter is interesting.
        Vladimir Zinchenko's chapter I found very informative as
        Vladimir puts
        Vygotsky and Shpet into dialogue in a way that offers a close
        reading of

        Today Peter sent a page on this same topic. The sentence
        "in other words, we are dealing with signs that do not only
        refer to things
        but also express some MEANING." (Shpet, 1927)

        Inner form is the exploration of the "but also express some

        There is the external referring to things AND the "internal
        form" the
        aspect of sign that expresses the "living form" of word,
        image, and action.

        As Martin and Mike have mentioned we are exploring the
        phenomena that
        emerges from within the "gap" and does involve imaginal processes.

        This is my interpretation of "inner form" but I would invite
        others to
        correct my [mis]understanding on the way to more clarity

        On Mon, Jan 26, 2015 at 9:49 AM, HENRY SHONERD
        <hshonerd@gmail.com <mailto:hshonerd@gmail.com>> wrote:

            Please help me:
            1) What is “inner form”?
            2) I can’t find the Zinchenko article in my emails. Was it
            sent out or a
            link to it?
            Thanks for your help.