[xmca] Stetsenko paper -- questions

From: Ana Marjanovic-Shane (ana@zmajcenter.org)
Date: Mon Oct 24 2005 - 15:30:17 PDT

As I am reading Anna Stetsenko's paper, I have some questions. Since no
one else made any comments yet, I feel a bit lost as to where to start,
especially since it looks like not everyone had an opportunity to read it.
The main issue that Stetsenko introduces is that CHAT has not placed
sufficient emphasis (or almost any) to the third "link" in the
Cultural-Historical model, namely the "human subjectivity" [the first
and the second "links" being: collaborative practice of material
production and collective exchanges]. And this is exactly what she is
trying to stress and simultaneously to show what needs to be
foregrounded and reconceptualized in order not to drop "human
subjectivity" from the picture of human development and human existence.
Without giving human subjectivity (question: why cannot we say "psyche"
in English?? I am not quite sure why not) an equal role to the social
exchanges (communication) and material production, one runs a risk of a
distorted reductionist view.
OK -- I agree. These "exaggerations" have not been so pronounced in
Vygotsky, in my opinion, but in the overall development of CHAT, there
is a general tendency to foreground the social aspect (both as
activities of production and activities of communication), and a
consequence of that is in keeping the dichotomy between individual and
social dimensions.
But there are some works today that continue in the "other" Vygotsky's
tradition -- and those are the studies of creativity, where the CHAT
model can be introduced, and was introduced in almost precisely the same
way that Anna Stetsenko discusses it. (cycles between individual and the
social). For instance in S. Moran and V. Steiner's article "Creativity
in the Making" (Creativity and Development, Oxford University Press ,
2003), the individual and the social are seen as a continuum of
practice, where processes of internalization of social practices are
contributing to creating an individual, BUT also the processes of
externalization, i.e. individual creativity are contributing to making
of the social reality.

One thing that I would like to discuss more is the difference between
object relatedness when it is part of a subjective activity and when it
is part of the social activity. How do we conceptualize this
relationship and the "object" in two different ways? and how are these
two object-relatedness-es mutually connected?
Also what is the role of "experience" (perezhivanie) in this whole
process -- i.e. -- I can conceptualize personal experience, and I can
conceptualize shared experience, but I cannot conceptualize social
experience and the relationships between them.


Ana Marjanovic-Shane

151 W. Tulpehocken St.

Philadelphia, PA 19144

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