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[Xmca-l] Re: The Learning Sciences in the era of U.S. Nationalism



Well, yes. Good question: How?  I take it Francine is not asking this ironically: she really wants us to figure out how.

The challenge is to answer the question. 

I don’t think any of us have a quick answer, but it certainly is a question that is within our collective knowledge to address.

H

Helena Worthen
helenaworthen@gmail.com
Berkeley, CA 94707
Blog about US and Viet Nam: helenaworthen.wordpress.com



> On Jan 22, 2017, at 7:32 PM, Larry Smolucha <lsmolucha@hotmail.com> wrote:
> 
> Message from Francine Smolucha:
> 
> 
> The key to an analysis of the Trump movement is understanding the
> 
> fundamental IRONIES that have rocked American politics.
> 
> 
> The workers revolution has resulted in the
> 
> workers/unions deserting the Left, the socialists, the Democratic Party.
> 
> Trump is a Capitalist regardless of whether he actually has a Republican ideology.
> 
> The workers' movement has been hijacked by a capitalist.
> 
> 
> The other great IRONY is that Trump wants to make Russia a U.S. ally (again).
> 
> The Left, the socialists, the Democratic Party are the ones demonizing Russia -
> 
> what a reversal!
> 
> 
> Since CHAT derives from Russian psychology (Leontiev and Vygotsky) and the backlash against Trump is also a backlash against all things Russian -  this puts CHAT in a particularly awkward position. How can a cultural historical psychology that originated in Russia become the leader in the anti-Trump discourse? or lead an anti-Trump educational movement? You are even extolling a Russian concept PEREZHIVANIE.
> 
> 
> I think the XMCA needs to examine its own perezhivanie at this time.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> ________________________________
> From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu <xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu> on behalf of mike cole <mcole@ucsd.edu>
> Sent: Sunday, January 22, 2017 3:01 PM
> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> Cc: Mariane Hedegaard; Reijo Miettinen; Seth Chaiklin
> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: The Learning Sciences in the era of U.S. Nationalism
> 
> Helena et al --
> 
> An important emphasis in the article for me was on the fact that although
> the article focused on the American nationalist movement that has just
> pulled of an alt-right coup, similar movements are poised to take hold in a
> lot of places in Europe to join the many already entrenched unsavory
> governments in other parts of the world.
> 
> The CRADLE center in Helsinki is under very concerted attack and the right
> wing government appears, from this distance, to be making great progress on
> destroying its legacy. The same process has been in Denmark for some time,
> also with apparent success.
> 
> What do our international colleagues who have already felt the hot breath
> of right wing nationalism have to offer in terms of strategies of
> resistence?
> 
> Back to "what is to be done," that sombre question from an earlier era. The
> answer last time did not produce what it promised.
> 
> mike
> 
> mike
> 
> On Sun, Jan 22, 2017 at 12:22 PM, Helena Worthen <helenaworthen@gmail.com>
> wrote:
> 
>> Thank you, Alfredo - I gave it a read.
>> 
>> Sure, of course they’re right. But I am very disappointed.
>> 
>> I was hoping that the following was only item #1 in a long list of "what
>> the 2016 election made apparent":
>> 
>> The 2016 election has made apparent the need for scholarship that
>> explicitly defends and furthers the rights and well-being of people of
>> color, immigrants, Muslims, women, people who are differently abled, LGBTQ
>> communities, and the earth. These are stances that have been limited, at
>> least explicitly, in the Learning Sciences.
>> 
>> But the call for inclusion was not just #1, it seems to be the whole
>> thing.  In other words, it’s all about identity —plus the earth, of course.
>> While inclusion is necessary, it’s not even a start. Yes, research,
>> teaching, publishing, promotion, conferences — everything associated with
>> teaching and learning has to include everyone as equals (see Andy’s book)
>> in one way or another — but then what? What are they (we) supposed to do?
>> Where does the pretty language touch the ground?
>> 
>> I was listening to a broadcast of the Women’s March in DC on Saturday
>> morning, and Kamala Harris, who was the California State Attorney General
>> and is now a junior Senator from CA, was addressing the rally. She said,
>> “People always ask me to talk about women’s issues. I say, ‘Oh, I’m SO glad
>> you’re interested in economics!! Let’s talk about economics.”  And she ran
>> through a whole set of parallel back-and-forths, always pulling identity
>> questions back to wages, jobs, earning, supporting your family, etc etc.
>> 
>> Much as we need to wipe away any barriers to the Learning Sciences (and
>> the professions and institutions dedicated to them) due to identity, until
>> the Learning Sciences start taking a look at the place where most people
>> spend most of their lives — not school, I mean — but work, they will be
>> engaging in a soft conversation at the edge of the real issue. It’s a
>> pleasant conversation but it doesn’t put a hand on the levers that
>> translate skill and knowledge into rent and groceries.
>> 
>> H
>> 
>> 
>> Helena Worthen
>> helenaworthen@gmail.com
>> Berkeley, CA 94707
>> Blog about US and Viet Nam: helenaworthen.wordpress.com
>> 
>> 
>> 
>>> On Jan 22, 2017, at 11:38 AM, Alfredo Jornet Gil <a.j.gil@iped.uio.no>
>> wrote:
>>> 
>>> Here it is,
>>> 
>>> http://cognitionandinstruction.com/engagements-the-learning-
>> sciences-in-a-new-era-of-u-s-nationalism/
>>> 
>>> Alfredo
>>> ________________________________________
>>> From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu <xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu>
>> on behalf of Helena Worthen <helenaworthen@gmail.com>
>>> Sent: 22 January 2017 20:24
>>> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
>>> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: The Learning Sciences in the era of U.S.
>> Nationalism
>>> 
>>> Someone please re-send the link to this article?  I think I’m going to
>> want to read it and respond to Mike’s question.
>>> 
>>> Thanks — H
>>> 
>>> 
>>> Helena Worthen
>>> helenaworthen@gmail.com
>>> Berkeley, CA 94707
>>> Blog about US and Viet Nam: helenaworthen.wordpress.com
>>> 
>>> 
>>> 
>>>> On Jan 22, 2017, at 12:25 AM, Alfredo Jornet Gil <a.j.gil@iped.uio.no>
>> wrote:
>>>> 
>>>> Mike,
>>>> 
>>>> thanks a lot for sharing this article. You and Michael, who have and
>> know more history, have spoken in terms of reminiscences. I have lived and
>> know less, and the article feels like fresh air. During my PhD, I begun to
>> increasingly feel that I had to due something to act and respond to the
>> increasing ecological and humanitarian globe crises. But how could I do
>> anything if I had children and a PhD to finalise?? What could I do that
>> would also be doing my job as researcher in a department of education? It
>> was very difficult to find anything, partly because almost every academic
>> quest would focus on learning, but so little on social development. How
>> many scientific articles are dedicated to socio-political questions in the
>> most cited educational journals? I felt very powerless.
>>>> 
>>>> To be able to address these questions within my expertise, is a
>> challenge partly because contrary to Dewey's hope, educational research has
>> only marginally focused on these questions, and yet they may be exactly the
>> question that matter to education. What are we educating for? Indeed, what
>> is education for? I think we face a serious problem when someone (like
>> myself), being an educational researchers/scholar, still has to scratch her
>> head wondering <<how can I make my profession matter to social change and
>> development?>> Vygotsky would be shocked!
>>>> 
>>>> Alfredo
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu <xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu>
>> on behalf of mike cole <mcole@ucsd.edu>
>>>> Sent: 19 January 2017 04:51
>>>> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
>>>> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: The Learning Sciences in the era of U.S.
>> Nationalism
>>>> 
>>>> Yes Michael,
>>>> 
>>>> It feels like the world of the later 1930's about the time I was born as
>>>> that period came down to me through the prism of a family of "premature
>>>> anti fascists."
>>>> 
>>>> For a great re-creation of those times see the highly ambivalent film by
>>>> Frank Capra, "meet John Doe." It has American big capital interconnected
>>>> with fascism combined with populist collectivism in a manner that
>> points at
>>>> the media (as then experienced) as the bad guys in disguise. Happy
>> Ending,
>>>> Beethoven Ode to Joy and all.
>>>> 
>>>> It's come round again, nastier this time.
>>>> 
>>>> Mike
>>>> On Wed, Jan 18, 2017 at 6:20 PM Glassman, Michael <glassman.13@osu.edu>
>>>> wrote:
>>>> 
>>>>> Mike
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> It was so interesting to read this note after reading the Cognition and
>>>>> Instruction essay.  All the way through it I kept thinking we have been
>>>>> here before.  It reminded me of the scholars, especially those who had
>>>>> escaped from Germany, trying to make sense of what had happened to
>> their
>>>>> society during World War II.  The foremost in my mind was Lewin.
>> Except I
>>>>> wonder if he would say the process of transformative action starts not
>> with
>>>>> emergence of quasi-needs, but our willingness and abilities to step
>> back
>>>>> from our quasi-needs and the ways that they drive us, often to
>>>>> dysfunctional behaviors that it ultimately destructive to both our
>> society
>>>>> and to us as individuals.  How hard this is to do, we have to keep
>> going
>>>>> back again and again.  The quasi-needs, tribalism, acceptance,
>> standing are
>>>>> always there.  It is how they shape us that is critical.
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> Michael
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> -----Original Message-----
>>>>> 
>>>>> From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu [mailto:
>>>>> xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu] On Behalf Of mike cole
>>>>> 
>>>>> Sent: Wednesday, January 18, 2017 8:31 PM
>>>>> 
>>>>> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity <xmca-l@mailman.ucsd.edu>
>>>>> 
>>>>> Subject: [Xmca-l] The Learning Sciences in the era of U.S. Nationalism
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> In following  the perezhivanie thread I encountered the note I
>> re-membered.
>>>>> 
>>>>> And interestingly mis-remembered. A translation into my focus on
>>>>> mediational means. He places the starting point of the process of
>>>>> transformative action at the emergence of quasi-needs (from Kurt
>> Lewin).
>>>>> 
>>>>> That seems correct to me. The new mediational means emerge under
>>>>> environmental presses. Ever functionalist ego need a goal(!). (The
>> problem
>>>>> with functionalism) In David's words,
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> Perhaps the place we should look for "exaptations" that can save both
>> our
>>>>> personalities and our environment is not in our evolved needs, but in
>> yet
>>>>> to be designed quasi-needs. Artificial organs, after all, always
>> suggest
>>>>> new and ever more artificial functions, like chess and language.
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> This point seems worth keeping in mind as we look at where this group
>> of
>>>>> critical scholars who work within the Learning Sciences disciplinary
>>>>> framework would like to lead us.
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> mike
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>> 
>>> 
>> 
>>