From: deanya lattimore <mdlattim- at -syr.edu>
To: Steven Taylor <swtaylor- at -xtra.co.nz>
Subject: ST on Boole and dialectix and dialogix
Hi! Good thoughts, Stephen--you took me away from my "real reading" for yet another hour.
Stephen W. Taylor wrote:
Was George Boole influenced by Hegel? Supposedly not, for he was known as a vehement critic (I have this at second hand; does anyone have access to Boole"s actual writings on the subject?). But does it follow that one is not influenced by that which one opposes? Or is the contrary the case?
I'd say that one is MOST influenced by what one opposes, especially if it can teach one about why one perceives an oppostion...
Can anyone see any relation between math and Hegel, between Boole"s AND, OR, NOT operators, and Hegel's tortured method of reasoning? If we take each and its opposite, so that we get this, that, both and neither, and then take NOT as the total negativity of all combinations, including the particular negative, interesting parallels emerge.
but it all still boils down to x and not x and all still depends on how we define x in the first place. Strange days indeed.
My guess is that what you're seeing is the natural binariness in the universe that Boole saw and that Hegel saw and that I can't stop seeing since I began thinking about "Tao." This is TRUTH, that all things come to be from their opposites and complete each other as true opposites. In my way of thinking, is it irrelevant whether Boole was influenced by Hegel (wasn't everyone?) if he was lead to "truth" while engaging in "dialectic"? (does it matter if a rock is speaking, so long as it tells the "truth"? : ) But let's hold on Socrates--we'll come back to this Greek thing.)
For the sake of terminology allow that Hegel's dialectic takes logic a step further, that it takes it to a deeper and more profound level. Call this deeper level, when studied in and for itself alone, dialogic.
"dialogic" is too problematic for me! It brings up all of Bakhtin. "Metalogic" already has implications and overtones, too.
Dialectic, then, will be the name given to the peculiar method of investigative discussion made famous by the Greeks, whose product is the truth of reason, the said dialogic; which applied to all things external is "philosophy", and applied to all things internal is the study of mind, and more intimately the function of the brain.
Do we want to agree that "DL" (what I'll call your definition of "dialogic" (tossing out the word with such ambivilence makes me shudder)) is the study of the deeper level, or the practice of using dialectic to "get to" a deeper level? You're drivin'...
My second question concerns the Greeks (oh yeah, them again...): are you specifically calling the (shudder) "Socratic method" "dialectic"? Or are you saying rather that the questioning and answering inherent in the "dialogic" (by which I mean the materiality of their universal situatedness in a small town where a public speech could be studied and debated and revised and answered again) nature of their time/space was such that it was "dialectic" that they practiced?
As I see it, the "upside down", and "standing on its head" terminology, applied by Hegel to the relation between his philosophy (which he calls simply, "science"), and naïve consciousness (empirical science), which then became such a big thing with Marx (who saw his entire work as "correcting" Hegel in this respect), derives from but one source: the math/dialogic relation, core of mind as this exists empirically in brain function, and philosophically as Hegel's absolute science (his philosophy as based on the dialectic).
Can we allow that Hegel's knowledge as it can exist to be learned dialectically is not a product of the differentiated consciousness (brain?)? (please?)
It will not be resolved until we refashion our comprehension of math in line with Hegel's thinking, even though Hegel himself did not, for all his storming around the castle, break through on the math front. We will find that, in the mind/matter dichotomy (which is first?),
can't we unify and think of the larger picture wherein they are the same thing?
math sits against, is built into, the flesh. Dialogic, as the "motor" in Hegel's dialectic, is the first footing of conceptual understanding. They are as necessary to each other, as different and related, as female and male (or should that be male and female?).
and as much, two sides of the same organistic (; I SAID ORGANISTIC!) function of cosmic development (evolution of the SPIRIT)? How would evolution take place without opposites? How would the universe figure out what it's about if it weren't differentiated?
I'm still reeling from your previous posts. Have you seen the movie pi?
+Will rhetoricize for food+