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Glasersfeld E. von (1974) Jean Piaget and the radical constructivist epistemology
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Ernst von Glasersfeld and the Italian Operative School.
Fulltext at http://cepa.info/23
Appreciating the relationship between Sylvio Ceccato and Ernst von Glasersfeld, both as people and in their work.
historical and personal accounts, archeological approach to written evidence.
Ceccato’s work is introduced to an English speaking audience, and the roots of Glasersfeld’s work in Ceccato’s is explored. Flaws in Ceccato’s approach are indicated, together with how Glasersfeld’s work overcomes these, specially in language and automatic translation, and what became Radical Constructivism.
Glasersfeld willingly acknowledges Ceccato, who he still refers to as the Master. But Ceccato’s work is little known, specially in the English speaking world. The introduction, critique and delineation of extension and resolution of Ceccato’s ideas in Glasersfeld’s work is the intended value of the paper.
Italian Operational School
Ernst von Glasersfeld
Ackermann E. K.
Experiences of artifacts: People’s appropriations / objects’ “affordances”.
In: Glasersfeld E. (ed.)
Keyworks in radical constructivism. Edited by Marie Larochelle
. Sense Publishers, Rotterdam: 249–259.
Fulltext at http://cepa.info/3893
I wish address some of the paradoxes that arise if one adopts a non-critical radical constructivist stance to account for creative people’s interactions with – and through – (hu)man-made artifacts, in particular as they engage in the process of ‘world-making’, to use Goodman’s expression (1978), or designing in a broad sense.
Castoriadis and autopoiesis.
Fulltext at http://cepa.info/4151
Castoriadis’s encounter with autopoiesis was a decisive factor for his philosophical trajectory. Its influence can be seen on four interconnected levels of his thought: his reconsideration of Greek sources for his later interpretation of trans-regional being as self-creating; his rethinking of objective knowledge; his ventures into philosophical cosmology; and his re-evaluation of the living being, especially in light of his dialogue with Varela. In brief, Castoriadis’s engagement with autopoiesis was significant for his shift towards an ontology of radical physis. His shift to radical physis does not point so much to a rejection of the project of autonomy, however, as, paradoxically, its simultaneous radicalization and relativization.
Exploring Creativity in the Design Process: A Systems-Semiotic Perspective.
Cybernetics & Human Knowing
Fulltext at http://cepa.info/3329
This paper attempts to establish a systems-semiotic framework explaining creativity in the design process, where the design process is considered to have as its basis the cognitive process. The design process is considered as the interaction between two or more cognitive systems resulting in a purposeful and ongoing transformation of their already complex representational structures and the production of newer ones, in order to ful?ll an ill-defined goal. Creativity is considered as the result of an emergence of organizational complexity in each cognitive system participating in the design process, while it is trying to purposefully incorporate new constraints in its meaning structures. The meanings generated in each system are identi?ed as the contingent and anticipatory content of its representations, and where self-organization is the dominant process in which they are continuously involved. Furthermore, Peircean semiotic processes appear to provide the functionality needed by the emergent representational structures in order to complete the cycle of a creative design process. Creativity originates in the abductive stage of the semiotic process, the fallible nature of which is maintained in the proposed framework by the fact that the respective emergent representations can be mis?ts. The nodal points of the framework are identified and analyzed showing that a cognitive system needs the whole interactive anticipatory cycle in order to engage in a creative design process.
Peircean Semiotic Processes
Autopoietic information systems in modern organizations.
Fulltext at http://cepa.info/3644
In this paper we argue for the possibilities of applying the concept of autopoiesis to the information systems of modern organizations. Modern organizations in today’s rapidly changing, turbulent and complex environment are virtual, open, heterarchic and autopoietic. The main question we try to address in this paper is how to support these organizations with an adequate information system. We show that it is possible to develop autopoietic information systems that should be able to respond to the challenges of modern organizations.
The Network Synthesis of Social Action I: Towards a Sociological Theory of Next Society.
Cybernetics & Human Knowing
Fulltext at http://cepa.info/3295
The paper looks at how a society having to deal with the introduction of the computer and its derivatives may differ from earlier societies which dealt with the introduction of language, writing, and the printing press. Each one of the introduction of these media of the dissemination of communication is regarded as a ‘catastrophe ’ forcing the society into new ways to selectively deal with new kinds of surplus meaning. The paper presents a sociological theory having to incorporate aspects of heterogeneous networks and of self-referential action in order to watch how the transformation of modern society into a next society may enfold. It draws a distinction between the structure of a society, ensuring the dissemination of communication, and the culture of the society, enabling it to condense the meaning of disseminated and distributed communication into a form which allows actors to focus on selections of it while taking account of the unmarked state as the other side of any one selection. Niklas Luhmann proposed to consider Aristotelian telos the ancient literal society’s culture form, and Cartesian self-referential restlessness or equilibrium as modern printing press society’s culture form. We add the culture form of boundaries for primitive oral society, and Spencer-Brownian form for the emerging next computer society. The paper will be
Beal J. W.
Knowledge Construction and the Eclectic Approach to Education. Review of: David Geelan (
) Undead Theories.
Fulltext at http://cepa.info/60
This is a provocative book for those who have closely aligned themselves with a specific research or pedagogical paradigm. The underlying theme of the book is to encourage multiple approaches to educational research that will inform practice… Although the book is more about eclecticism than constructivism, it can serve as a basis for many discussions on educational research as it is and where it should go.
The Theoretical Environment around 1965.
Fulltext at http://cepa.info/24
Ernst von Glasersfeld has actively contributed to the development of the ideas of the Scuola Operativa Italiana (SOI) from 1947. The paper outlines the theoretical status of the SOI research around 1965, which also marks the conclusion of an important phase of this development. The aim is to contribute to better understanding of the continuity of Glasersfeld’s research.
Italian Operational School
Bettoni M. C.
Knowledge as Experiential Reality.
Fulltext at http://cepa.info/47
Open peer commentary on the target article “Arguments Opposing the Radicalism of Radical Constructivism” by Gernot Saalmann.
I appreciate Saalmann’s recognition that “there are considerable differences amongst the authors” and that these “have changed their opinions in the course of time” (§3); but given this, what are the consequences for an outline of the theses of radical constructivism (RC)? Which approach is best for outlining a theory of knowing under these hindering conditions? My suggestion would be to use a method specifically developed for this kind of situation and to present it explicitly, or, if it does not yet exist, to develop one.
Bettoni M. C.
The Yerkish Language: From Operational Methodology to Chimpanzee Communication.
Fulltext at http://cepa.info/26
Yerkish is an artificial language created in 1971 for the specific purpose of exploring the linguistic potential of nonhuman primates. The aim of this paper is to remind the research community of some important issues and concepts related to Yerkish that seem to have been forgotten or appear to be distorted. These are, particularly, its success, its promising aspects for future research and last but not least that it was Ernst von Glasersfeld who invented Yerkish: he coined the term “lexigrams,” created the first 120 of them and designed the grammar that regulated their combination.
The first part of this paper begins with a short outline of the context in which the Yerkish language originated: the original LANA project. It continues by presenting the language itself in more detail: first, its design, focusing on its “lexigrams” and its “correlational” grammar (the connective functions or “correlators” and the combinations of lexigrams, or “correlations”), and then its use by the chimpanzee Lana in formulating sentences. The second part gives a brief introduction to the foundation of Yerkish in Silvio Ceccato’s Operational Methodology, particularly his idea of the correlational structure of thought and concludes with the main insights that can be derived from the Yerkish experiment seen in the light of Operational Methodology.
Lana’s success in language learning and the success of Yerkish during the past decades are probably due to the characteristics of Yerkish, particularly its foundation in operational methodology. The operation of correlation could be what constitutes thinking in a chimpanzee and an attentional system could be what delivers the mental content that correlation assembles into triads and networks.
Since no other assessment or explanation of Lana’s performances has considered these foundational issues (findings), a new research project or program should validate the above-mentioned hypotheses, particularly the correlational structure of chimpanzee thinking.
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