8 Dec 2008 17:56
RE: The philosophical challenge of 2009, was, A "chemical-like" synthesis from elemental forms.
Joseph Ransdell <joseph.ransdell <at> yahoo.com>
2008-12-08 16:56:02 GMT
2008-12-08 16:56:02 GMT
Dear Gary: It would be difficult to persuade me that you have been posting too much, though you may be expecting too much by way of responsiveness. People often just have too much to do at certain times to be responsive regardless of what interest they are taking in what is being posted. It is impossible to form a reasonable hypothesis about what is actually going on among the people who are not responding (except of course in extraordinary cases where something very extreme is being said, as rarely ever occurs here). People who usually respond get busy and run out of time now and again, and there are many people who assiduously follow everything avidly but do so only as spectators, as is evident to me from off-list messages I get from people who prefer not to participate overtly. Of course, you might have good reason otherwise to distance yourself for a while in order to do justice to other things in your life, Gary, as I have found it necessary to do myself for the last couple of months. Fortunately, the forum is self-regulating and doesn't really require my attention, due in no small measure to your own scrupulousness as well as that of others on the list in keeping things on an even keel when, as occasionally happens, the passion that often accompanies spontaneous expression when one is thinking well leads to unintended excess. So don't hesitate to break your vow to refrain from contributing for a while if something tempts you to the contrary. It is your absence rather than your presence that people are likely to be disturbed about! Joe Joseph Ransdell ransdell <at> cspeirce.com ARISBE website: http://www.cspeirce.com/ PEIRCE-L archives: http://lyris.ttu.edu/read/?forum=peirce-l http://news.gmane.org/gmane.science.philosophy.peirce -----Original Message----- From: Gary Richmond [mailto:garyrichmond <at> rcn.com] Sent: Friday, December 05, 2008 7:26 PM To: Peirce Discussion Forum Cc: Jerry Chandler Subject: [peirce-l] The philosophical challenge of 2009, was, A "chemical-like" synthesis from elemental forms. Jerry, list, Farewell (for a time) kind list. When one finds oneself the only respondent to his own message, you know it's probably time to "take a break". But, before I do that, I unfortunately have to correct what might be perceived as an error in dating a major development in Peirce's thinking. But first, Jerry, I want to apologize to you for taking up your good questions here when you'd addressed them to me off-list. I simply found them so interesting that I couldn't restrain myself. Anyhow, here's the bad news: I have to correct my error. More than any other particularly noxious thing that I've done here recently, this 'slip' reminds me that I ought to reflect on what I write here before posting, rather than writing -> posting. Thus, the good news: Because I've been posting way too much, and now I'm currently caught up with the end of the college term; after which I'll be visiting family over the holidays; and, then, flying almost immediately to Prague around the New Year (especially, it is hoped, to soak up some of the bright spirit of Mozart-- a city in which he experienced *only* success), because of all that, I promise that this is truly going to be my last peirce-l post until well after the New Year (although, off-list I'd be pleased to chat briefly with any possible interlocutors who might want to discuss any of the topics we've been discussing, as I am keenly interested in all the thinking in all these thread). Anyhow, to the error: Jerry, off-list you asked: > > Jerry: Secondly, would you happen to know when the trichotomy was > first introduced by CSP/ and I responded, vaguely aware of a possible perceived reason to interpret there being an error in my thinking: > Gary: Perhaps I'll be corrected on this, but from Peirce's texts that > I've examined in the Collected Papers, and from various secondary > sources (especially Beverly Kent's monograph on Peirce's > Classification of the Sciences), I take this final ordering of the 3 > semeiotic sciences to have been introduced in 1902 in the "Minute > Logic" and, then, somewhat refined in the several lectures of 1903. > The point I especially want to make now is that once the "perennial > classification" (as Kent characterizes it) was introduced (and, > recall, that Peirce went through several strikingly different outline > classifications of the sciences), that he seems never to have changed > his mind regarding its structure (at least as late as the last mention > of it in 1911) Also, note, that this final classification is > essentially tricategorial. My last comment above, "that this final classification is essentially tricategorial," may well point to the source of the possible confusion. It is my--but certainly not everyone's--tendency is to always think of trichotomic analyses in Peirce as applying to not *any* triadic divisions into three, but to essentially *tricategorial* divisions, in the manner in which Peirce applies the term "trichotomic" around the time of his brief sketch of a possible science of TRICHOTOMIC (in all caps in the CP and EP) which, as that projected 'art or applied science', never got more fully developed than it appears in "A Guess at the Riddle." Well, I am trying to contribute to the development of that art, as I hope others will continue to do as well. The point now is that later on Peirce applies this trichotomic principle to the analysis and architectonic development of a "Classification of the Sciences." It was this self-conscious application of the categories to the three branches of semeiotics which I was referring to in giving the grammar/critic/rhetoric trichotomy an early 20th century date. But certainly the triadic division of these three is very old, going back as far as the Medieval Trivium (a point John Sowa is fond of making). Much later, Kant divides his Transcendental Logic into Stoichoiology (Peirce once used a variant of this to refer to Theoretical/Pure Grammar) , Logic and Methodology (Hamilton follows this order as well). As for Peirce's early use of the division into these three, Emily Michael (now retired, I believe, colleague at the City University of New York) comments that "As early as 1865, before he had published any papers in philosophy, Peirce, in his first university lecture, similarly says that the general study of . . . logic in the broad sense . . .involves three sciences, viz. Formal Grammar, Formal Logic, and Formal Rhetoric." So, to conclude, Peirce seems always to have made this division of semeiotic into three parts. More and more, it seems, he begins to emphasize their representing a genuine trichotomic relationship (one of many in the Classification of the Sciences). Let me just conclude this, my last post of the year, by saying that I do most sincerely apologize to anyone I may have offended or bored or confused here this year. I am a Christian and see us all as sinners, no matter how hard we try to do good. Christ himself cursed a tree for not bearing fruit (that can only be conceived as a cosmic error of judgment, but along the lines of: "The good we would do, we do not; and the evil we would not do, we do"). I am so truly sorry for any unkindness I've expressed here (and I have) as I most certainly respect and, I believe, care for everyone on this list. For the New Year I wish us all better philosophizing. America--and, probably, the world--is in horrific shape. In the USA some estimates are that now as many as 12% are unemployed, and the worst is yet to come. We live in precarious times (again, a famous Chinese *curse*: "May you live in interesting times"). Yet, as Suzanne Langer said, it is the task of philosophy to pursue those big, new ideas that are needed for civilization and a humane culture to advance to meet its current challenges--and opportunities. She concludes Philosophical Sketches by writing: > We need big ideas, abstract, powerful, novel--in short, modern--so > that the human mind shall always encompass and control what human > hands may reach (Langer, 152). Regulation we can believe in! (== "critical commonsensism", pragmaticism, Peirceanism!) I would add that I don't believe Langer means to exclude 'feelings' or 'the body' is suggesting that our human vocation requires philosophy. We are, I think, very fortunate at the moment to have had a man just elected President of the United States a person who is exceedingly intelligent, thoughtful, and possibly wise beyond his years. I believe, and have increasing evidence that others believe, that he is also a philosophical pragmatist, interested in bold abductions; leading to likely (to succeed) experiments in the interest of directing us all to bold new projects to find and realize our human vocation, _/*our*/_ summum bonum as human beings. As I see it, philosophy has not only an important, but an *essential* role here. Although apparently mainly unsuccessfully, I have always try to "push my shoulder" to that wheel, along with you, Jerry, and all 'chemists'. A Happy Holiday Season and a brilliant New Year to you and to all the good folk here at the Peirce forum. Best, Gary > --- Message from peirce-l forum to subscriber joseph.ransdell <at> sbcglobal.net --- Message from peirce-l forum to subscriber gspp-peirce-l <at> m.gmane.org