Re: PCP course exercise
Thu, 02 Feb 1995 14:12:17 EST

Hello PCP news group:

My name is Michael Mascolo. I am new to the newsgroup, but I've been
listening in for some time now. I am writing you from Merrimack College
in North Andover, Massachusetts (USA). My research interests are socio-
emotional development, the role of social interaction in development,
and constructivism in all its myriad forms.

I've found the discussion of language quite interesting, and I'd
like to address the issue of privileged versus non-privileged access.
I'd like to introduce the distinction -- not a novel one -- between the
subjective and objective frames of reference here (objective meaning
"third party," not true and uncontaminated by inference). It seems to
be that when I describe my internal states, that I do so from a
subjective frame of reference. As such, I have access to information that
you do not have access to (detecting inner changes, and the like). And
so in that sense, I have some privileged access to information. However,
in commenting on my internal states, you also have access to information
that I do not necessarily have access. I might claim that "I am not
angry," but you might call my attention to my rising voice, angry
facial expression, and tense muscles. Thus, from an objective frame of
reference, you might be able to make judgments about my "internal states"
based on information to which I have no privileged access.

So the point is that privileged access to information is not all
or none, it depends upon one's frame of reference.

Now what we do with that information, the meaning we impose upon
it, that is a different story that raises other concerns...

Thoughts on these issues?


Michael F. Mascolo
Department of Psychology
Merrimack College
North Andover, MA 01845