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continuity of ideas of soviet-era great philosophers ...

 
 
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 07:13 pm
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right on Ilyenkov's wikipedia's English page:
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evald_Ilyenkov
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you find the following quote from David Bakhurst:
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" ... there are important continuities between Ilyenkov's ideas and controversies in Soviet philosophy and psychology in the 1920s and '30s, particularly ... with Vygotsky's"
--David Bakhurst, Language and Communication, 17 (1), 33-51
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I think Bakhtin, Jakobson, Vygotsky, Luria, Ilyenkov and Lotman were the pioneers of what we call now "consciousness studies". In fact, I recently read an interesting paper by Dr. Anton Yasnitsky:
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Edit [Moderator]: Link removed
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Yasnitsky, A. (2009). Vygotsky Circle during the Decade of 1931-1941: Toward an Integrative Science of Mind, Brain, and Education (Ph.D. dissertation, University of Toronto)
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in which Dr. Yasnitsky wrote about "Sciences during Stalin's Great Terror" (in which scientists (Isaak Spi(e?)lrein (Sabrina's brother?), socialist poet and ergonomist Aleksei Gastev and many more people) were arrested, "prosecuted" and many executed under show trials)
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From that paper:
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As Raymond Bauer wrote in 1952, "it is axiomatic in the field of Soviet studies that one is never right; he is only wrong with varying degrees of vulnerability. In this area more than in most the writer must make the choice between avoiding risks and eliciting the maximum of meaning from the material" (Bauer, 1952, p. ix).
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... doublespeak, the special code designed to simultaneously render the message to the scientific community and to deceive the censor was a reaction to this "external" oppression is the result of scientists' deliberate invention and intense effort to both pursue science, and to survive, both physically and psychologically (Yasnitsky, 2009). From the perspective of the contemporary standards of Western scientific ethos one is tempted to blame Soviet scholars for hypocrisy and servility. In contrast, I argue that doublespeak was a progressive and efficient invention of the scientific community, an essential mechanism of resistance to oppression, and, paradoxically, an expression of freedom and intellectual independence.
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Whether to choose a relatively secure newspeak jargon of the official propaganda or to attempt to overcome it by writing in doublespeak was always a matter of personal choice. The high price for taking risks and attempting to resist the ideological constraints might be the loss of one's job, freedom, or even one's life. Yet, the reward was even bigger: a clear consciousness and inner freedom, perhaps the most valuable possession for a human being.
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[end of quotes /]
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I would even give a more real perspective to the reactions those scientist had to their harsh day-to-day reality. How may scholars in "the land of the free" would risk their jobs by airing truths questioning their own government's lies?
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I wonder about the extent to which this type of research would benefit from corpora-based textology. I also think that Dr. Yasnitsky could have commented on the general cultural and societal level conscientization of the repression in those times. Many philosophers have already conjectured in their own words and from their own perspective that consciousness is (more than a Bakhtin dialogical realization, a) trilogy in which the individual sel[f|evs], cultures and society participate (cultures are actually encoded; society is not, it is just where all the different cultural encodings interact/happen). That interrelationship is definitely not a simple one. Most probably they didn't have any mind spared for jokes knowing that the Nazi war machinery was up to no good with them, but, just as an example, I couldn't stop laughing about this joking twist of the Rupert Murdoch "scandal":
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http://blogs.artvoice.com/avdaily/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/TMW2011-07-27colorlowres.jpg
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I think it was Chaplin the one that said that comedians are above politicians. The overloading of some communicative code wasn't invented by Stalin-era Soviet scholars. Crypto Jews did it during their repression during inquisition times in Spain and so did Jonathan Swift in the form of parody in his "Gulliver's Travels"
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Vygotsky and Luria creatively benefited from each other big time, but even though I notice their philosophies relate very much, sometimes I wonder about the extent to which all those great philosophers actually related to each other:
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Mikhail Bakhtin: (November 17, 1895 -- March 7, 1975)
Roman Jakobson: (October 11, 1896, Moscow -- July 18, 1982, Boston)
Lev Vygotsky: (November 17 1896 -- June 11, 1934)
Alexander Luria: (16 July 1902 -- 14 August 1977)
Yuri Lotman: (28 February 1922 -- 28 October 1993)
Evald Ilyenkov: (18 February 1924, Smolensk -- 21 March 1979, Moscow)
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To my total amazement Dr. Yasnitsky does not mention any relationship between Vygotsky's circle and Ilyenkov:
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Yasnitsky, A. (2011). Vygotsky Circle as a personal network of scholars: Restoring connections between people and ideas. Integrative Psychological and Behavioral Science, 45(4), 422-457; DOI: 10.1007/s12124-011-9168-5
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I think Ilyenkov's work relating to, well, our semiosis ;-)
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marxists.org/archive/ilyenkov/
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specially:
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Dialectics of Abstract & Concrete, 1960
Dialectical Logic, 1974
Activity and Knowledge, 1974
The Universal, 1974
Concept of the Ideal, 1977
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is (pretty much) all is needed to clobber a well articulated theory about our consciousness; including an explanation of the mind-body link, which, I think, is determined by our semiosis. The articulation of the concept of -the general- (relating to the Universal), but also considering its semiotic concretizing closure + (among other things) some good dose of Descartian dualism ("res cogitans" and "res extensa" are actually linked through our semiosis in an integral in mutually articulating way (even when we sleep/dream we not only have sensory-like perceptions, but also perceive their corresponding qualie, move, talk, sweat, our NS go into REM phases, ...))
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Do you know of any work on the contribution of these philosophers to "consciousness studies" in which the philosophical import of their ideas towards a theory of mind is interrelated (regardless of their communicative proximity ("circles, gossiping clusters", ...))?
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lbrtchx
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