Cognition and constructionism

(no name) ((no email))
Fri, 16 Feb 1996 19:16:54 -0500 (EST)

Trevor, and other PCP networkers:

Trevor Butt writes -- among other things [TB's material between the
double lines]:


My objection to what I think of as cognitive accounts is that it
looks as though everything comes from inside us, and behaviour
issues from 'constructs' or cognitions. Clearly not everything we do
is deliberated on. Often,we might spell out to ourselves what we
have done after the event in order to make sense of it. Somehow
behaviour and cognition go hand-in-hand.

What is needed? What construction results from my and you processing
of the text, in the above quote, by the term "is deliberated on."

Are we stuck with a construction of COGNITION which suggests a kind of
verbal/oral/auditory processing of every construction?
I would again like to refer to the very superordinate construct
DOWN-UP. When I fill a glass with water and attempt to take it across the room
to water a plant, I put into effect my very complex construct DOWN-UP.
Agreed?? Otherwise, the water would slosh all over the place, and I would
need to spend a great deal of time correcting for my poor anticipatory
construction of the way the water function relative to DOWN-UP.
Now, did I "deliberate on" the use of that construction? Was the
application of that construction a cognitive process? Was my construction an
on-the-spot creation which took into account the particulars of the situation
-- the shape of the glass, the amount of water in the glass, the volume of the
glass, etc?
Similarly, if I receive a letter, and as I read it I create a self
construction which allows my wife to say -- "What's up, you look very SAD?" can
I take my self construction as SAD to be the same kind of self defining
cognitive process which occurred as I defined the glass of water in terms of
my UP-DOWN construct.
I will again repeat my claim that the objection to the COGNITIVE in PCP
-- as I use the term COGNITIVE -- stems from an effort to apply a limited
construction of COGNITIVE. And, my term LIMITED, of course, represents my
construction!!! Perhaps someone will claim that my construction of COGNITIVE
has become improperly expansive. I, however, can make my case for my
conception [I hope}.

Thanks for the reaction.

Jim Mancuso