kjoosepp (kjoosepp) wrote in everyday_sem,

My first questions.


Questions for Grigorjeva.

You speak of sel-fcommunication necessarily meaning that we communicate with ourselves through some instance that makes us different inside ourself. While you state that this partner is simply language I immoderately start considering other factors that might allow us to do this. For example: Time and self identification. We have memories. We haven constant stream of memories. Even the „present moment“ is in fact a very short lived memory one could say, because for us to be „aware“ of any moment, we have at least posses it in our consciousness for enough time to analyze it, become aware of it. As we do so, the moment has already passed us by, however. Even the very nature of perception puts us in the past as we perceive not the immediate moment, but signals to our brain that are constructed by our nervous system.
So we have memories, of ourselves. We consider ourself through those memories, though we might inductively make predictions about the future of „us“ based on those memories. However the „me“ in the „present“ moment, that is doing the experiencing is constantly comparing and contrasting the „me“ that DID the experiencing as we remember it. Thus we are in communication with ourselves already. The experiencing part of ourselves and our memory. As you put it „Intelligence is a memory of how to operate with something.“
Of course language plays a huge part in the forming of memories and any narratives about ourselves. But this little throught-line that I went through now, I did so because I started thinking if language is indeed the only means of self-communication or creating of this „other“ within „me“ to communicate with.
In general this idea is very acceptable to me, of course, because even in psychology we see that the „self“ is a very complicated and pluralistic notion, constantly being constructed and reevaluated and naturally language plays a part in that structurization. I would argue, even, that there are multiple, multiple „selves“ for me to communicate with.



The claim that the universe has a linguistic character or is structured akin to a language immediately gives me the first impulse to demand further explanation on this claim. My first problem, (fear?) or thought comes that this is just what a semiotician, who mainly deals with language, would want to claim to lay pretense to some greater form of philosophical supremacy as well within his/her discipline. While I cannot argue with the definition of language that you provide as general system, I would ask if there is danger in stretching the term - usually meant for verbal/textual human language as we know it - too far and creating an umbrella term, an empty signifier for semiotics. Does semiotics indeed would like to claim analysis of physical processes as well? Is it justified in doing so? What would be the semiotic approach to the functioning of stars for example?

(That last question was definitely not rhetorical. I would be very interested in hearing some description of that, haha.)


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