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[Xmca-l] Re: Taxis and Embedding in Conversation



Thanks David for pointing to us that "semiogenesis" is from Halliday. But I
seem to remember "semogenesis" in his functional grammar - are they the
same?

James




On 4 July 2017 at 13:31, David Kellogg <dkellogg60@gmail.com> wrote:

> Alfredo:
>
> I don't see why doing justice to the memory of James McCawley has to
> involve revising history. I was a freshman radical, and there is a good
> reason why nobody asks a freshman to write a Festschrift. I think most of
> us would have just said that it was abso-blooming-lutely
> fan-fucking-tastic, and I probably would have tried to say that it was
> a-blooming-solutely fantas-fucking-tic). I have since read quite a bit of
> his work (a pleasure anyone who really wants to do him justice should not
> deny themselves) but that first impression--that he was the kind of Ayn
> Rand libertarian currently laying waste to the health insurance system that
> the Obama administration left behind--has certainly not been dispelled.
>
> Vygotsky uses "phylogenesis" and "ontogenesis", because these were current
> in the nineteenth century. He doesn't use "sociogenesis" or "microgenesis",
> because these were not. The term "Aktualgenese" was used by the
> Gestaltists, but it meant percepts in a tachioscope, or dots on the
> horizon. Vygotsky prefers to speak of "teaching-learning".
>
> Semiogenesis is from Halliday. As James says, it exists at all levels: just
> as the phylogenesis of the brain doesn't come to a halt when we start
> building societies, and sociogenesis doesn't stop in order to allow us to
> raise children, ontogenesis doesn't stop when children learn to talk.
> Halliday describes how Nigel at one is able to distinguish between "Dada?"
> ("Where's Daddy?") and "Dada!" ("There you are!") and this immediately
> turns his repertoire of three words *"Dada", "Ama", and "Anna") into six.
> Later, Nigel uses UP intonation to mean "somebody do something" and DOWN
> intonation to mean "I see!", and these intonational forms eventually,
> combining with wording, become interrogatives and declaratives. That's
> semiogenesis--the genesis of meaning potential.
>
> So I think it's possible to see a lot of Vygotsky's pedology in terms of
> semiogenesis. Early childhood is the gradual increase of meaning potential
> through class generalizations (e.g. common nouns instead of proper nouns).
> The Crisis at Three is the increase of meaning potential through polarity
> (e.g. negation and "negativism"). Preschool is semiogenesis through
> imaginary situations, and the Crisis at Seven is semiogenesis through the
> internalization of perizhivanie. School age seems (to me) to involve
> semiogenesis through turning (instructional and other) narratives into
> dialogues, or "communication" into "generalizations", Thirteen is
> semiogenesis through "dissociation", and adolescence is semiogenesis
> through conceptualization. Taxis and embedding seem to be important aspects
> of this: taxis allows us to create hierarchies of superconcepts, and
> embedding allows unlimited recursiveness and delicacy for subconcepts.
>
> But just as ontogenesis becomes a leading factor in sociogenesis (and just
> as sociogenesis becomes a leading factor in phylogenesis, at least if you
> are human) I think that semiogenesis takes on a significance of its own in
> adulthood. It seems to me that significance is not so much embodying
> experience as, in childhood, but disembodying it. Perhaps "overliving it"
> is a better way to think of it: that is, after all, literally what
> "perezhivanie" means:
>
> Children are dumb to say how hot the day is,
> How hot the scent is of the summer rose,
> How dreadful the black wastes of evening sky,
> How dreadful the tall soldiers drumming by.
>
> But we have speech, to chill the angry day,
> And speech, to dull the rose's cruel scent.
> We spell away the overhanging night,
> We spell away the soldiers and the fright.
>
> There's a cool web of language winds us in,
> Retreat from too much joy or too much fear:
> We grow sea-green at last and coldly die
> In brininess and volubility.
>
> But if we let our tongues lose self-possession,
> Throwing off language and its watery clasp
> Before our death, instead of when death comes,
> Facing the wide glare of the children's day,
> Facing the rose, the dark sky and the drums,
> We shall go mad no doubt and die that way.
>
> David Kellogg
> Macquarie University
>
> "The Great Globe and All Who It Inherit:
> Narrative and Dialogue in Story-telling with
> Vygotsky, Halliday, and Shakespeare"
>
> Free Chapters Downloadable at:
>
> https://www.sensepublishers.com/media/2096-the-great-
> globe-and-all-who-it-inherit.pdf
>
> Recent Article: Thinking of feeling: Hasan, Vygotsky, and Some Ruminations
> on the Development of Narrative in Korean Children
>
> Free E-print Downloadable at:
>
> http://www.tandfonline.com/eprint/8Vaq4HpJMi55DzsAyFCf/full
>
>
> On Tue, Jul 4, 2017 at 6:05 PM, James Ma <jamesma320@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > Hello Alfredo, I came across the term "semiogenesis" in the past but
> can't
> > remember who coined it.
> >
> > To me, the four domains of human development I mentioned earlier are
> > invariably imbued with signs and symbols. If I were to suggest more
> > appropriate terms for describing the semiotic aura in these domains, they
> > would probably be phylosemiosis, ontosemiosis, sociosemiosis and
> > microsemiosis?
> >
> > James
> >
> >
> > On 4 July 2017 at 01:13, Alfredo Jornet Gil <a.j.gil@iped.uio.no> wrote:
> >
> > > Pegg, thanks for making sure justice is made in the treatment of
> another
> > > scholar; I am sure many in the list appreciate it.
> > >
> > > David, James, you both have used the term 'semiogenesis,' which seems
> to
> > > have gone unremarked but it certainly called my attention. I made a
> > search
> > > on the xmca archive and the term 'semiogenesis' had appeared only a
> > couple
> > > of times before. And, unless the term is just a synonymous with such
> > > expressions as 'genesis of symbolic activity', 'semiogenesis' does not
> > > appear in the English versions of Vygotsky's collected works.
> > Sociogenesis,
> > > by contrast, appears often and is elaborated in several places, as do
> > > ontogenesis and phylogenesis. What is the history of the term
> > > 'semiogenesis' in CHAT? Why did not Vygotsky and others use it?
> > >
> > > Reading about the contrast between ants and whales that was mentioned
> in
> > a
> > > previous post, I also wondered what a distinction between the social
> and
> > > the semiotic would be for researchers in the field of biosemiotics, who
> > are
> > > concerned with the production of signs all across the biological
> > spectrum.
> > >
> > > Alfredo.
> > > ________________________________________
> > > From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu <xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu
> >
> > > on behalf of Peg Griffin <Peg.Griffin@att.net>
> > > Sent: 03 July 2017 06:30
> > > To: 'eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity'
> > > Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: Taxis and Embedding in Conversation
> > >
> > > For anyone who is interested, this is about the characterization of Jim
> > > McCawley in the message this replies to.
> > > I found it inappropriate, unacceptable, not true and not needed to make
> > > any point in the message.  Perhaps the writer is unaware of the
> > impression
> > > given by the characterization provided.
> > > As repair, I will point out that many admired Jim as a kind and open
> man,
> > > an activist for causes seen in the US as leftist, a deeply thoughtful
> > > linguist who data grubbed (he said "data fetishist") as a student of
> many
> > > languages and colleague of many linguists, a fine cook and musician.
> He
> > > died in 1999.  You can find obituaries in the Chicago Tribune and the
> New
> > > York Times, and in the Linguistic Society of America's journal, there
> is
> > a
> > > memorial:
> > > Lawler, John (2003). James D. McCawley. Language. 79:614–625.
> > > doi:10.1353/lan.2003.0173
> > > (His candidacy on the Libertarian ticket, by the way, was not for
> > > Governor, but for a seat on the University of Illinois Board of
> trustees
> > --
> > > 3 times in the 70's in the complex politics of Chicago and Illinois as
> > part
> > > of intentional moves concerning power, corruption, and the relation
> > between
> > > universities and politics in the US in general.)
> > > PG
> > > -----Original Message-----
> > > From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu [mailto:xmca-l-bounces@
> > > mailman.ucsd.edu] On Behalf Of David Kellogg
> > > Sent: Sunday, July 02, 2017 5:37 PM
> > > To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> > > Subject: [Xmca-l] Taxis and Embedding in Conversation
> > >
> > > Greg:
> > >
> > > Bear with me for a linguistic excursus. It will involve taking the
> scenic
> > > route. But after all, that's what whales do.
> > >
> > > So one of the first linguistics professors I ever had at the University
> > of
> > > Chicago was James McCawley. He was a right wing nut job: when he wasn't
> > > professsoring, he was running for governor of Illinois on the
> LIbertarian
> > > ticket. Because he was a libertarian, and because he was a bit of a
> nut,
> > he
> > > would lecture on why we freshmen like to say "Fan-fucking-tastic!"
> > instead
> > > of, say, "Fantas-fucking-tic!" In "My Fair Lady", Audrey Hepburn sings:
> > >
> > > Oh, so lover-ly singing abso-blooming-lutely still Ah would never budge
> > > till spring crept over me window sill!"
> > >
> > > Why not "ab-blooming-solutely" (which has the advantage of
> alliteration)
> > > or "absolute-bloomingly" (which would make more morphological sense)?
> or
> > "
> > >
> > > The answer has to do with embedding, which is a phenomenon that occurs
> on
> > > virtually every level of language: sounding, wording, and of course
> > > meaning. So for example, at the level of wording, imagine that I
> receive
> > a
> > > letter from a elementary school crush, and it is discovered by my wife.
> > >
> > > a) She tore up the letter, which upset me.
> > >
> > > Now imagine that this long-lost elementary school crush turns out to
> be a
> > > loathsome right winger soliciting funds for "Blue Lives Matter":
> > >
> > > b) She tore up the letter which upset me.
> > >
> > > Oh, what a difference a little comma can make! In b) "which upset me"
> is
> > > embedded in the nominal group (the "noun phrase", for you Chomskyans).
> It
> > > plays no part in the structure of the clause-complex (the "sentence"
> for
> > > Chomskyans). So it has no effect on the tearing or on the "she", and it
> > is
> > > confined to "the letter", just as "fucking" intensifies the SOUND
> STRESS
> > on
> > > "TAST-ic" rather than the lexical meaning of "fantasy" or the more
> > > grammatical meaning of "ic", and "blooming" intensifies the prosodic
> > > emphasis of "LUTE-ly" rather than the lexical meaning of "absolute" or
> > the
> > > grammatical meaning of  "~ly". But in a) "which upset me" is a all
> about
> > > her tearing up the letter and it impacts "she" and "tore up" and not
> just
> > > the letter: it is abso-bloomingly-lutely part of the story of the
> > > clause-complex as a whole.
> > >
> > > You can see that both McCawley's example and my own are about meaning,
> > but
> > > they are about different kinds of meaning. McCawley is talking about
> > > prosodic meaning: the kind of meaning we get from rhymes, jingles, hip
> > hop
> > > and Homeric hexameters. I am giving you an example of lexicogrammatical
> > > meaning, the kind of meaning we get when semantics (thinking) is
> realized
> > > as lexicogrammar (wordings, which may be in turn realized as soundings,
> > but
> > > they may also be inner speech).
> > >
> > > But, as the poet says, if you would see the Yangzi River, you must
> ascend
> > > another storey of the Yellow Crane Tower. In the latest volume of her
> > > Collected Works, Ruqaiya Hasan is talking about a conversation between
> > her
> > > graduate student, Carmel Cloran, and Carmel's preschool son, Stephen.
> > >
> > > It's the kind of rangey conversation we all have with preschoolers: she
> > > asks him what he wants for lunch, and he decides on peanut butter
> > > sandwiches and passionfruit. The passionfruit is not in the fruit bowl
> > and
> > > it has to be retrieved from under the kitchen table, Stephen wants to
> > know
> > > why there are no passionfruit in Sydney at this time of year (it's
> > winter)
> > > and Carmel wants him to sit at his designated place at the table and
> not
> > > the place where his Grandma usually sits, Stephen wants to know why
> > Grandma
> > > sits there and not elsewhere, and why he can't sit there when she's not
> > > around, and then as Carmel brings the sandwiches and prepared fruit to
> > the
> > > table she talks about taking him shopping to Chatswood.
> > >
> > > One way to see this conversation is as a kind of Monty Python show--a
> > > sequence of texts separated by "and now for something completely
> > > different". This is, actually, the way they see things at the
> University
> > of
> > > Sydney, where each "text" in the conversation is attributed to a
> > different
> > > "genre" and even a different "register". In some of the texts the
> context
> > > is present, in others it is present but under the table, and in others
> it
> > > is in distant Chatswood and far in the future.
> > >
> > > But another way is to see some of the texts as embedded in others:
> > looking
> > > for the passionfruit is a kind of qualifier of Stephen's request for
> > > passionfruit, and the explanation of seating has the function of a
> > > "because..." or "since..." hypotactic. clause attached to Stephen's
> > sitting
> > > in the wrong place at the kitchen table.
> > >
> > > The trip to Chatswood? On the face of it, this is really "and now for
> > > something completely different". And yet, from the Macquarie point of
> > view,
> > > it too is linked, but "paratactically". What is being kept up is the
> > > interpersonal flow of meaning--the intimate, loving, but asymmetrical
> > > relationship between care-giver and cared-for. This is not much related
> > to
> > > the social reproduction of the material conditions of life (and from
> > > Stephen's view not at all): if they do not go to Chatswood they will
> not
> > go
> > > hungry tonight. But it is part of the flow of semiosis that forms the
> > great
> > > ocean current that carries humans and other warm-blooded animals on
> their
> > > migrations.
> > >
> > > Yes, of course: semiogenesis and sociogenesis are linked, just as
> > > phylogenesis and sociogenesis are not simply stacked the one upon the
> > > other, and learning is not simply the "domestication" of development
> for
> > > purpose of  Aktualgenese or microgenesis: there is an inner link in
> both
> > > cases. But as soon as we say that the social reproduction of the
> material
> > > conditions of life and the flow of semiosis have this inner link and
> are
> > > not simply stacked like geological layers, we find ourselves admitting
> > that
> > > they can also be distinct, that eddies of semiosis sometimes carry us
> > > backwards in sociogenesis and sometimes fling us far into our own
> > futures.
> > >
> > > David Kellogg
> > > Macquarie University
> > >
> > > "The Great Globe and All Who It Inherit:
> > > Narrative and Dialogue in Story-telling with Vygotsky, Halliday, and
> > > Shakespeare"
> > >
> > > Free Chapters Downloadable at:
> > >
> > > https://www.sensepublishers.com/media/2096-the-great-
> > > globe-and-all-who-it-inherit.pdf
> > >
> > > Recent Article: Thinking of feeling: Hasan, Vygotsky, and Some
> > Ruminations
> > > on the Development of Narrative in Korean Children
> > >
> > > Free E-print Downloadable at:
> > >
> > > http://www.tandfonline.com/eprint/8Vaq4HpJMi55DzsAyFCf/full
> > >
> >
>