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Re: [xmca] ISCAR review and Volker's impressions

Larry, perhaps basis and superstructure can help?
In an article (danish) about the mentioned self-psychology I try, in my eyes, to create a bridge between basis = self-psychology, psychodynamics, and superstructure = social construction, but I say in this article that it is Vygotsky and his work, that makes it possible to create this connection between relativistic approaches (e.g. appreciate inquiry) and psycho-dynamic/phenomenological views on intentionality we have in common, because we share nature-history, as a pre-program, which demands cultural re-programming.


Den 01-10-2011 00:21, Volker Bunzendahl skrev:
Larry - that is very helpful, and interesting.
Portes himself mentions Adler (and Jung) in his article, and I feel here, that both Fernando and Portes argue to "open the door" for "psychodynamics", which for me would mean two things. Nr. 1, I think we have to look more in to the Lewin/Vygotsky relation, the two inspiring each other (field = felt-theorie).

The other is, that we here in Denmark have a professor, who tries to combine dialectic materialism, the concept of Zone of proximal development, with the elaboration of psychoanalysis by Heinz Kohut, which in Tønnesvang's version got the name: self-psychology.

I attach here an article, which in some ways shows, not directly, but maybe indirectly, that a generative self perhaps is not so far from "Perezhvianie".

I don't know, I have to reread it in this light, ... but the concept of a self as connectedness is, IMHO, not so far from what I read, Fernando and Portes ask for, as a new road for enterprise.


You mention Silvonen, which makes me think of John Shotter, and his term "knowing from within", and relational responsible dialog instead of representational knowledge. Shotter is inspired by Vygotsky, and Wittgenstein, and Bahktin and Merlau-Ponty in a wonderful mix, se "Social construction on the edge"...


It seems to me that selfpsychology on one side, Shotter on the other are two different poles, - in trying to understand the concept of perezhivanie.


Den 30-09-2011 16:10, Larry Purss skrev:
Hi Volker,
Reading your enthusiastic response to Rey's presentation is a jumping off
point to launch into the continuing reflections on the dialectic between
concepts of "subjectivity" and "objectivity"
You wrote,

The article by Fernando in the Portes book, is very interesting
But, if Fernando or others can help: Rey; 2011:49: /Perezhivanie/ should be
understood as a self-regulated psychological system of personality.
In the next chapter in the book, Guillermo Arias (2011:57) introduces the concept of /vivencia/. He cites Vygotsky: Vivencia is the true dynamic unit of conscience, and Arias explains: Vivencia is the basic functional unit of
the psychological, or the mind or subjectivity.
My question is, what is the relation between this two words, is Perezhivanie
the more personal part of vivencia, or??
Anyway, it seems to me, that this focus on personality, subjectivity
questions is a very important matter: is it activity, or activity systems, or vivencia, which it the unit, we start with. And is vivencia, in a way, an
activity system?
Arias, 2011:59: Marx's idea that the essence of human beings is social
relations and not activity, or work only is very important. Indeed, social
relations encompass work and other relationships (Marx&Engels, 1986).

Volker, all your questions are questions I also struggle with. I read Rey's chapter and he is orienting to make a distinction between "social relations"
and "activity".

Your summary statement above that "social RELATIONS " and not "activity" [or work only] is the essence of human beings seems to be a place for launching this particular thread. The phrase "work ONLY" is central in exploring this topic. The terms "alone","merely", and "derivative", can also be synonyms
for "only".  These terms point to reduction and reification as ways of
orienting or finding paths to subjectivity OR objectivity.

The debate between the alternative positions
-"social relations" as primary NOT derivative within cultural-historical
theory [CHT] as distinct from
-"activity" as primary NOT derivative within cultural historical activity
theory [CHAT]

This is the distinction I read into Rey's proposal in his account of the
transitional moments in the emergence of the  new
cultural-historical paradigm.

At this point I want to also bring in Jussi Silvonen's account on this same
topic as he proposes 3 distinct "shifts" or alternative discourses or
"language games" [forms of description] in Vygotsky's legacy.  The 3
paradigms he proposes are 1) Socio-behavioural 2)Early Cultural Historical
Theory (1)-Instrumentalism and 3) Late Cultural-Historical Theory

It is the "late" period which both Rey and Silvonen are pointing to as an
alternative path which they recommend we explore further.  From their
perspective in this last phase of Vygotsky's reflections two conceptions of sign, instrumental and semiotic are present simultaneously but the semiotic
interpretation takes the dominant role. Sivonen claims,

"only the transition from the instrumental to the semiotic sign concept
completes the shift from socio-behaviourism to mature cultural-historical

In this 3rd phase Silvonen suggests Vygotsky makes a distinction between
mediated activity BY TOOLS and mediated activity BY SIGN [analyzed from the point of view of sign-mediated SOCIAL INTERACTIONS]. In other words "social interactions now become the KEY as EXPRESSED within sign-mediations which
produce new forms of cultural-historical activity

The shift from instrumentalism to semiotics was a shift from sign having a CONSTANCY of meaning [sign and logical memory have identity]. In the mature semiotic phase the task was to demonstrate the DIFFERENCE. The formation [Tony's in*formation] of "meaning", not the identity of pre-existing formed signs, is hypothesized as the key function of sign. The sign in Silvonen's
words becomes a "meaning container"
Sivonen suggests this meaning container producers new "free" activity
independent of immediate needs. With sign containers action becomes directe
or oriented towards the future which is DEPENDENT on the USE of sign
containers which connec or interweave the present and future. This new
in*formation creates "a completely new psychological FIELD of action".
[Vygotsky] that leads to intention and ANTICIPATION directed by words.

In other words the use of sign containers withIN speech is the key to
producing meaning. This leads to Silvonen's account that Vygotsky believed
"communication" [social interactions] was the primary FUNCTION of speech
communication. Social interactions among REAL ACTUAL others stand behind all
higher psychological functions and their relations.

Rey and Silvonen share in this project to orient cultural-historical theory
in the direction of actual social interactions in*forming dialogical
communication as the KEY to sign containers.

I have not explored the links between the e-motional and the symbolic as a
"unity" within this version opening a path to subjectivity. However, in
closing I want to mention my impression that psychoanalysis, phenomenology [philosophy of orientation], pragmatisim, are other traditions engaging with
ACTUAL social interactions as intersubjective, dialogical in*formative
anticipatory actions and activity. In each tradition they are swimming
against other currents in their distinctive traditions but I "sense" a
family resemblance" in focussing on actual dialogical social interactions.
Intersubjectivity "all the way down" within cultural-historical

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Volker Bunzendahl, Lektor
Cand.psych. og Konsulent

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