Introduction to Roman Jakobson

Waugh, Linda R. and Monique Monville-Burston 2002[1990]. Introduction to Roman Jakobson, Selected Writings. In: Rudy, Stephen (ed.), Selected Writings I: Phonological Studies. Third edition. Introduction by Linda R. Waugh & Monique Monville-Burston. Berlin; New York: Mouton, v-lxiii.

His favorite topic in all of these writings is language, in all of its manifestations. It provides the center for all of his work, thus uniting subjects as diverse as the grammar of poetry, verse patterns, aphasia, child language, distinctive features, acoustic phonetics, grammatical meaning, language typology and universals, neurolinguistics, semiotics, glossolalia, proverbs, language and culture, Slavic epic studies, the early history of the Slavic Church, Czech Hagiography, the names of Slavic Gods, and so forth. (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: v)
The linguistics of Jakobson is indeed bordering on lingu-ism.
And in 1917 Sergej Karcevskij returned to Moscow from Geneva, bringing with him the ideas of Ferdinand de Saussure, one of the founders of modern linguistics. Here Jakobson found affinities with his own views, in particular the overarching notion of language as a system of signs. The sign (signum, in the Latin terminology that Jakobson favored) is composed of a signifier (sound form, signans and a signified (meaning, signatum). The signifier is perceptible ("sensuous" or "sensible"); the signified is conceptual (see 1949h). (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xiii)
Thus when R. Kantor criticized his first presentation in America as being about medieval philosophy, he might have arrived at this idea through Jakobson's use of these Latin terms.
In those years, too, the students of linguistics at Moscow University were discussing the newest developments in the phonology of language. They learned, in particular, to distinguish between linguistic meaning (signatum) and extralinguistic reference (denotatum; RJ 1962c:631); they absorbed the strong Russian tradition of Hegelian and post-Hegelian dialectics, which stressed the importance of antinomies (dichotomies). Jakobson adopted the ideas of Edmund Husserl (1913) and Anton Marty (1908) on universal grammar as the only firm theoretical basis for linguistic work (Holenstein 1976a, 1987). (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: ix)
Something to keep in mind when again venturing into Charles Morris's behavioristic semiotic, where these are signification and denotation.
The Prague Circle, which is known as the cradle of the structuralist movement, became a major force in twetieth-century linguistics. It stood for both a functional and a structural view of language. Language serves for communication; from this fact, Praguians claimed, comes the fundamental "need to analyze all the instrumentalities of language from the standpoint of the tasks they perform" (RJ 1963d). Language is a system with an internal structure suited to these communicative tasks. Indeed, it was Jakobson who first coined the term "structuralism" in 1929 (republished as RJ 1971c711), as a cover term for this viewpoint.
Were we to comprise the leading idea of present-day science in its most various manifestations, we could hardly find a more appropriate designation than structuralism. Any set of phenomena examined by contemporary science is treated not as a mechanical agglomeration but as a structural whole, and the basic task is to reveal the inner, whether static or developmental, laws of this system. What appears to be the focus of scientific preoccupations is no longer the outer stimulus but the internal premises of the development; now the mechanical conception of processes yields to the question of their functions.
The basic unit of this structural-functional whole is the linguistic sign. (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xii)
Although Jakobson named this viewpoint "structuralist", a good case could be made for it being indeed inherently functionalistic.
Jakobson and Trubetzkoy endeavored to establish the notions of phoneme and phonological system as fundamental concepts for linguistics. Together they developed a set of principles, all of which are based on the fact that a phonological system is a structural whole (rather than a mere agglomeration of disparate elements). (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xiii)
Their co-written (and somewhat cryptic) theses should probably be re-read while keeping this in mind.
Jakobson also became convinced that "linguistic changes are systematic and goal directed, and ... the evolution of languages shares its purposefulness with the development of other socio-cultural systems" (RJ 1980d; see Galan 1985, Liberman 1987). A teleological approach to language change is thus essential. (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xv)
I wonder if anyone will come to a similar conclusion in terms of nonverbal communication? At the moment the only aspect that I can think of is the development of technology (from handwriting to keyboards and from mouse-operations to touchscreens, for example) and it's effect of hand gestures.
Jakobson, however, regarded the two sides of a dichotomy as complementary and all dichotomies an independent of one another. He argued that linguistics must study parole, and his work on the roots of sound change in synchrony led him to claim that synchrony can be both static and dynamic. Any state of language thus presents a dynamic synchrony. Changes in progress are manifested as stylistically and socially marked variants (sometimes called functional dialects) in the system of a language at a given time: for example, old-fashioned versus newfangled, more careful versus more sloppy, "allegro" versus "largo" speech. In this way Jakobson insisted on the inclusion of time as an element of synchronic structure - in particular of phonological structure (RJ 1980d). (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xvi)
More exposition on the permanent dynamic synchrony.
By incorporating both invariance (context-independent meaning) and variation (context-specific meaning), he gave the basis for the interrelation of what later were to be considered two disciplines, semantics and pragmatics. (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xvii)
Compare these to Anton Marty's notions, autosemantic and synsemantic.
For example, the falling together ("syncretism") of two or more categories - such as the accusative and genitive case for animate nous in Russian - is semantically motivated (see RJ 1936a). (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xvii)
Aaaand a purely linguistic definition of syncretism.
Indeed, he argued that the phoneme is a combination (bundle) of distinctive features; it is composed of diverse primitive signaling units and can itself be incorporated into larger units such as syllables and words. It is simultaneously a whole composed of parts and is itself a part that is included in larger wholes (see RJ 1963c). Hierarchy, then, is the fundamental structural principle (see Caton 1987:230). (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xvii)
I was wondering why it is sometimes mentioned (even in this text) that Jakobson was influenced by the Gestalt theory and it's part-whole relations stuff, and why there don't seem to be any mentions of this in his selected writings. It is because the hierarchy that Jakobson imputes on most anything embodies this part-whole relation.
Jakobson made a further step in his definition of the phoneme and the distinctive feature: they are signs. Their signified is "(mere) otherness," or pure differentiation: they serve merely to distinguish words.
Since words are also signs, phonemes and features are pure "signs of signs," unlike all other types of signs, which have some content. By using such definitions, he placed these phonological elements in a much broader context. He claimed that language is a completely semiotic system, a system of signs from the largest components (discourses) to the smallest ones (the distinctive features). "An important structural particularity of language is that at no stage of resolving higher units into their component parts does one encounter informationally pointless fragments" (RJ 1963c). (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xviii)
Compare this to Charles Morris's negation of "metasigns". Also, compare this to the scheme in the theses of the semiotics of culture (Uspenskij et al. 1973). It must be pointed out that "signs of signs" here are not "signs about signs" but rather something "signs on one level that constitute 'larger' signs on a higher level".
For the Prague Circle, functionalism and structuralism were inseparable. Jakobson himself described his theory of language as one in which function (language as a tool for communication) and structure (language as a lawful governed whole) are combined (RJ 1963d): language is structured so as to be suitable for communication. During his Prague period the structural aspect chiefly concerned him. But during the mature phase of his intellectual career, especially the 1950s and 1960s in the United States, there was a shift of emphasis: he devoted more attention to a "means-ends" approach and began to build a model of "language in operation" (RJ 1964e). (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xxii)
More on functionalism/structuralism. It may be possible to compare these to the semiotics of culture. The structural aspect is certainly present - e.g. culture as a supraindividual whole - but the function of culture is a bit more difficult to tackle.
Many years before, as mentioned above, he had begun rethinking this antinomy, reacting against Saussure's definition of these terms as contradictory: while langue for Saussure was social, homogeneous, and static, parole was individual, heterogeneous, and subject to change. Jakobson contended that these two equally necessary aspects of language should not be conceived of as absolutely separated. (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xxii)
That is, language/code/type as invariant and speech/message/token as variant.
Jakobson received another impetus for this repudiation of Saussurian doctrine from a very different source: communication theory (RJ 1961a, b). Intrigued by work in the mathematical theory of communication, information theory, and cybernetics, he reflected on the dynamics and the complexity of the communication process in society (RJ 1974d). He was particularly drawn by the "modern, less ambiguous terminology" afforded by this trend (RJ 1971c:718), so much so that he championed the new terminology wholeheartedly: langue and parole were henceforth "code" and "message"; speaker and addressee, "encoder" and "decoder"; production and comprehension, "encoding" and "decoding"; stylistically marked variants, "stylistic subcodes"; and so on (RJ 1953c, 1966d). Recognizing the theoretical richness of communication theory, he also placed it in the broader context of a theory of pragmatics, that is, his theory of the "functions of language." (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xxii-xxiii)
Around the time he mentioned that he read basically everything available on the subject.
For most linguists and philosophers at the time, the purpose of communication was referential. But for Jakobson and the Prague School, "Reference is not the only, nor even the primary goal of communication" (Caton 1987:231). Language is rather a system of systems suited to various communicative goals. These goals in turn are correlated with the act of communication in which language is used. Jakobson had inherited from the psychologist Karl Bühler (1934) the tripartite schema of the speech event as necessarily encompassing the following three factors: (1) a speaker (an encoder), (2) an addressee (a decoder), and (3) a thing referred to, which Jakobson generalized to the notion of context. Through his work on poetry, he had already added a fourth factor, namely, (4) the message, the particular instance of parole being communicated by the speaker to the addressee. Jakobson's initial insight was to define four functions of language and to show that, within the message, each function is related to one of the four factors: (1) the emotive (expressive) function corresponds to focus on the speaker; (2) the conative function, focus on the addressee; (3) the referential (cognitive) function, focus on the context; and (4) the poetic (aesthetic) function, focus on the message. (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xxiii)
Here the functions are said to "focus" on something. In Jakobson's own formulation, there is a "set" or Einstellung towards something, with relevant - I think - implicit consequences for thinking about communication and his function.
At this time Jakobson added two more factors in speech communication: (5) the code that is common to speaker and addressee, and (6) the contact between them, the medium by which they communicate. The two additional functions, then, are (5) the metalingual (metalinguistic) function, corresponding to focus on the code, and (6) the phatic function, focus on the contact. In his presidential address at the annual meeting of the Linguistic Society of America in 1956, he presented for the first time his sixfold typology of the speech event and the corresponding functions (published as RJ 1976c; see also RJ 1960c, 1981c). (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xxiii)
This exposition presents the components and functions in a weird order - perhaps in the actual order that they were corroborated? Since I will most likely have to read (or re-read) the relevant publications, I'll note the references here: 1976c = "Metalanguage as a Linguistic Problem"; 1960c = "Linguistics and Poetics"; and 1981c = "My Favorite Topics".
On the other hand, he distinguished the two operations used for production and comprehension: selection (substitution) and combination (also called contexture). In order to produce utterances, speakers have to select linguistic items from sets and combine them into larger wholes, thereby creating contexts; in their turn, addressees have to comprehend the combinations and discern which items were originally selected. On the other hand, Jakobson contrasted two types of relations in language structure, similarity (all types of equivalence) and continuity (temporal and spatial neighbourhood): linguistic items belong to classes or types that share properties, and they always appear in a context. (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xxiv)
The passage goes on to discuss how this distinction is also embodied in the distinction of metaphor/metonym, which we should already be well familiar with. It is notable that in the communication process, the speaker selects and then combines, but the listener has to comprehend the combinations and discern which iterms were originally selected. It is yet again doubtful whether we actually go through these operations or not. I'm mostly interested in how to distinguish or unite context and contexture, especially with reference to the Gehring's contextual function (1910).
According to this projection principle, parallelisms between equivalent units help to structure the poetic text; tropes built on similarity, such as metaphor, are more likely to be found in poetry, whereas metonymy is more characteristic of prose. In the latter, focus is on some other facet of the speech event, and contiguity is the essential contsructional principle. (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xxv)
This is the most comprehensive (understandable, sense-making) explanation of the projection principle I've read. One could even match the poetic function with a statement such as "In the literary function, the relation of contiguity is projected from the axis of selection to the axis of combination".
For Peirce, any semiotic behavior is to be seen not as the outcome of a static system but rather as a dynamic process in which the essence of a sign is its interpretation, that is, its translation, by some further sign. Jakobson henceforth defined the signatum as that which is "interpretable" or "translatable" (RJ 1959b, c). He characterized the Peircian approach as "the only sound basis for a strictly linguistic semantics" (RJ 1976c:118) and stipulated that this widened definition of translation was an essential aspect of language and thus a crucial question of linguistic theory (RJ 1959b, cf. 1930b). (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xxvii)
I'm not very fond of the translation principle, Peirce emphasized interpretation (e.g. the interpretant). Jakobson's turn to translation here seems rather as a means to consolidate Saussurean semiology with Peirce's "dynamic" view of semiosis.
As schematized in Figure 4 (inspired by a similar diagram in Holenstein 1976a:187), linguistics (the study of communication by any verbal message whatever) incorporates poetics (the study of poetic verbal messages) and is itself included in semiotics (the study of communication by any messages), which in its turn is part of a larger study of communication, involving social anthropology, sociology, and economics (RJ 1990: chapt. 27). (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xxviii)
Now I must add poetics to his scheme of concatenating disciplines.
Communication theory also gave Jakobson, the information theorist E. Colin Cherry, and Halle a much stricter mathematical definition of the rhetorical concept of redundancy (RJ 1953a). They used it to clarify the notion of contextual variation: while the invariants (phonemes) are bundles of distinctive features, the additional properties of contextual variants are characterized by redundant features. The latter are aspects of sound that are nondistinctive but relevant for perception because they serve to support and enhance the distinctive features (RJ 1952c, 1966a). The aspiration of /p/ in English (as in [ph]), for example, is a redundant feature that enhances its differentiation from nonaspirated /b/. (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xxix)
Here we have redundancy operating like an intrinsic (or in a Peircean sense, degraded) form of the metalingual function. Just think of those everyday occurrences when someone misheard a word you said and in reply to their metalingual query ("What does that mean?") you pronounce the word again more emphatically (that is, enhance the distinctive features involved).
His interests were far from antiquarian: he studied the past insofar as it was of relevance to the present and to the future. In keeping with his approach to the history of languages, his point of view was always a prospective one. He constantly searched in his predecessors for the germs of various ideas of modern linguistics, especially his ows (see Stankiewicz 1977). Perhaps the most famous of the trophies of this hunt are his (re)discovery and (re)appraisal of the work of the forerunners of modern linguistics. (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xxxiv)
I like to think that my own work has a similar aim.
His fascination with time as a structural factor was combined with Peirce's reflections on time as related to icon, index, and symbol (RJ 1980b). Icons are "the accomplished image of an experience that is already past; while the index is linked to an ongoing experience in the present. The symbol, however, always possesses a general meaning and is based on a general law; everything that is truly general is related to the indefinite future ... It is a potentiality whose mode is esse in futuro" (RJ 1980d:91-92). Thus, the Futurist Jakobson of the 1910s joined the futurist Jakobson of the 1980s. For him, all words are symbols; thus, "the word and the future are indissolubly linked" (RJ 1980d:92, emphasis added). This view meant, in particular, that his work - words about words - was a legacy to the future (Ivanov 1983), a vast program of work in progress. (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xxxxv)
Although this discussion is very general, I do believe that time and space viewed as "semiotic value" have great potential within them.
"A renewal is fruitful only when it goes hand in hand with tradition," Jakobson wrote (1975d:186), quoting Stravinsky. (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xli)
Good quote is good.
The widely used concepts of feature, binary opposition, markedness, redundoncy, and universal, for example, have become the untellectual property of beginners in linguistics, often without the acknowledgement that they originated in or were fostered by Jakobson's work. (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xlii)
Why is redundancy in this list? Oh (I googled). It appears that he brought this term to the fore in his work with Halle and Cherry in the early 1950s. He distinguishes distinctive features and redundant features (e.g. "signs of signs" above). Redundancy in this sense is synonymous with "morpheme structure rules".
Viewing language as a relational whole and a communicative tool with many functions, Jakobson emphatically objected to any reductionism in its study and opposed any "rigid confinement of research" (1971c:712). (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xliii)
That is, language as a system of systems.
The category of shifters and the complementary concept of deixis continue to be used in verbal and nonverbal morphology, and their implications reflected upon and explored. (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xliv)
What in the world is this?
The ethnography of communication (see Hymes 1962, 1964a, b, 1972, 1975, Gumperz and Hymes 1964, 1972, Bauman and Sherzer 1974) has also taken its inspiration from Jakobson's multifunctional perspective on communication (Caton 1987:251). His schema of the speech event, components and functions, has been more or less taken for granted and elaborated on by scholars in this field. (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xlvii)
Like I need any more reasons to include Dell Hymes in my readings list?
Following Jakobson, Eugene Nida (1964:3) divides the general field of translation into three parts: intralingual (paraphrasing), interlingual (translation proper), and intersemiotic (transmutation from one semiotic system to another). (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: xlix)
Towards a Science of Translating (1964) is available online.
Jakobson's work has also been influential in the emergence of semiotics as a scientific discipline in the Soviet Union (see Rudy 1986). (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: lix)
Which is why we are reading him here in Estonia today.
Lévi-Strauss's work on kinship reveals various Jakobsonian themes: the notion of system and relational structure, laws of compatibility and incompatibility, typology, teleology, relational invariance, the unconscious nature of social structure, the use of mathematics in structural analysis, and componential analysis (Lévi-Strauss 1945; see alse 1951, 1952, 1953). (Waugh & Monville-Burston 2002[1990]: lx)
Something similar could be said about Lotman's work, especially when it comes to understanding culture as a "relational structure".

Papers from Jakobson's SW (8)

Jakobson, Roman 1985[1950]. Slavic Gods and Demons. In: Rudy, Stephen (ed.), Selected Writings VII: Contributions to Comparative Mythology. Studies in Linguistics and Philology, 1972-1982. Preface by Linda R. Waugh. Berlin; New York; Amsterdam: Mouton, 3-9.

Former Russian gods are occasionally interpolated into translated literary works (Malalas Chronicle; Alexandreis) or in accord with the Byzantine pattern, appear as rhetorical adornments in the original epos (Igor' Tale). (Jakobson 1985[1950]: 3)
Memo: read about Igor' Tale.
The relative linguistic unity and negligible dialectal differentiation of the Slavic world urtil the end of the first millenium A.D., and particularly the considerable lexical uniformity of Slavic pre-Christian belifes, corroborates the supposition of a substantial unity for the cult of the Primitive Slavs. In the vocabulary originally connected with worship, the Slavs and partly the Baltic peoples, their closest linguistic neighbours, present striking similarities with Indo-Iranian as well as with Thraco-Phrygian nomenclature. (Jakobson 1985[1950]: 4)
These are rhetorical adornments that I should apply on my own research on Estonian body-centered language. E.g. how there is "considerable lexical uniformity" in cloud-metaphors, for example.
Thus the Slavs participated in the Iranian evolution into a clear-cut dualism and, according to Helmold's accurate testimony, they were wont to worship divinities of good and those of evil, "being convinced that happiness comes from the god of good while misfortune is dispensed by the deity of evil". And the Slavic term for faith (věra) coincides with the Iranian term for religious choice between good and evil. (Jakobson 1985[1950]: 5)
I wonder if this is at all similar with the Estonian white and black gods...
The Common Slavic rai "paradise" has been acknowledged as a direct borrowing from Iranian rây- "heavenly radiance, beatitude". (Jakobson 1985[1950]: 5)
Something to consider when discussing the notion of sun-ray in christian figures of speech. Lots of potential for folk-etymology here.

Jakobson, Roman 2002[1959]. Why "Mama" and "Papa"? In: Rudy, Stephen (ed.), Selected Writings I: Phonological Studies. Third edition. Introduction by Linda R. Waugh & Monique Monville-Burston. Berlin; New York: Mouton, 538-545.

"The child," H. Werner (1940) stressed, "grows out of his child's world into an alien world of adults. His behavior is the result of an interaction between these two worlds." One could add that likewise the behavior of adults with regard to the child they nurse and educate is a result of an interaction between both worlds. In particular, the so-called "baby talk" used by the grownups when speaking with infants is a kind of pidgin, a typical mixed language, where the addressers try to adjust themselves to the verbal habits of their addressees and to establish a common code suitable for both interlocutors in a child-adult dialogue. (Jakobson 2002[1959]: 538)
This sounds vaguely familiar, as if Lotman had remarked on it somewhere.
In contradiction to the "wild sounds" of babbling exercises, the phonemes are to be recognizable, distinguishable, identifiable; and in accordance with these requirements, they must be deliberately repeatable. (Jakobson 2002[1959]: 542)
This same standard could work for the study of nonverbal communication, so as to differentiate "wild" behaviours from identifiable and repeatable communicative cues.

Jakobson, Roman 1985[1982]. On the Dialectics of Language. In: Rudy, Stephen (ed.), Selected Writings VII: Contributions to Comparative Mythology. Studies in Linguistics and Philology, 1972-1982. Preface by Linda R. Waugh. Berlin; New York; Amsterdam: Mouton, 377-378.

The hic et nunc of linguistic reality brings every human being face to face with a multitude of spatial fields and temporal moments, and any production or perception of language reaches its steady manifestation through the selection and combination of suitable entities from within this double multitude. Our selective and combinatory verbal activities are generally restrained and directed by a system of acting rules. It has frequently occurred to linguistic interpreters that the use of language was being conceived without respect to these rules. Speech production and perception in their temporal changes remained the only focus of scholarly observation. The opposite trend was the view that rules confine the production and perception of language at any gives stage, and these rules, promoted as the chief subject of linguistic study, were termed langue versus parole, or "code" versus "message", or "competence" versus "performance". (Jakobson 1985[1982: 377)
Code (as selection) and message (as combination) are restrained by a system of acting rules... that is code/language? There seems to be a loop here. But restriction and direction are valuable notions. These should be compared to metacommunication in the Ruesch-Batesonian model.
A singleness was attributed to the rules of competence, and this was resolutely superposed on the plurality of performances. I have objected to this strict mechanistic rupture between invariant and variants: no speaker appears to be limited to one single code. In essence he holds to the same language with the closest and most distant members of his environment, yet constantly modifies his manifold code and thus adapts his competence to diverse interlocutors, different topics, and his ceaselessly varying verbal styles. There is, as in any system, an incessant liinkage of variants and invariants, a permanent unity and diversity of phonological, morphological, syntactic, lexical, and variational means. The universal phenomenon of dynamic synchrony points to a constant interchange of the code. (Jakobson 1985[1982: 377-378)
Another iteration of permanent dynamic synchrony and the "subcode" view of language.
Both in various self-adaptions to the interlocutor (verbal conformism) and in different degrees of mutual repulsion (verbal nonconformism), we submit our code to a maximal variability, an inconstancy both in space and in time. Such has been my recognition of the inseparability between invariance and variability. This thesis appears to me as the conditio sine qua non of scientific analysis from the early steps of Hegel's dialectics to the present-day sciences, especially linguistics, and our indebtedness to the Master's inspirations is far from exhausted. In particular, time and space are two mutually inseparable, inner factors of language, and the latter and its interpretation remains inalienable from these factors. Every verbal activity implies incessant selections and decisions between locomotor opportunities which suggest themselves, regardless of whether it concerns an intimately merged idiom or a distant coincidence, as well as which stage of the mutation in progress - an imminent archaism or the final phase of innovation. (Jakobson 1985[1982: 378)
These inner factors are also inseparable in communication generally. I have to say, Jakobson made more and more sense as years went by.

Jakobson, Roman and Linda R. Waugh 1987[1979]. Excerpts from The Sound Shape of Language. In: Rudy, Stephen (ed.), Selected Writings VIII: Major Works 1976-1980. Completion Volume 1. Berlin; New York: Mouton, 1-315.

Through a significant coincidence, the Prague Linguistic circle and the geneticist Jacob have defined the object of their studies as "a system of systems". The principle of gradual integration governs the structure of the two codes. Both of them equally display a hierarchy of discontinuous units. As the biologist points out, each of these units, labeled "integron", is built by assembling integrons of the level below it and takes part in the construction of an integron of the level above. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 69)
And ultimately, Jakobson imputes hierarchical nature to organisms.
Among all the information-carrying systems, the genetic code is the only one which shares with the verbal code a sequential arrangement of discrete subunits - phonemes in language and nucleotides (or 'nucleic letter') in the genetic code - which by themselves are devoid of inherent meaning but serve to build minimal units endowed with their own, intrinsic meaning. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 69)
It is necessary to re-read Birdwhistell's Kinesics and Context to determine whether the case is similar in nonverbal communication.
If the formation of a mammal or especially of a human being is written down in the genetic message and baffles the scientist's imagination as "a marvel of exactitude and precision", just the same may be said about human language as an extraordinary, faultless, and subtle device of both outer and inner communication. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 71)
E.g. interpersonal communication (outer) and intrapersonal autocommunication (inner).
The doubt sometimes intimated about the universal indispensability of learning and tutorship is based merely on a somewhat superficial, bureaucratic attitude toward the meaning of the words tutor and learn. Learning and imitation or more exactly, replication (cf. L. G. Jones 1967: 5), are widely creative phenomena, and tutorship frequently appears in a covert and latent form (cf. Whorf 1956: 70ff., 88ff., 105ff.). (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 73)
I agree wholeheartedly. My own favourite manner of learning consists of "motor-imitation" - re-writing texts or passages that I like.
Between these two varieties of language users there are a number of characterological differences which have even led some investigators such as Goody & Watt (1963) to distinguish sociology, the science of man as a writing species, from social anthropology, the science of man as a merely talking animal. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 74)
Actually a worthwhile note on the names of disciplines. And the distinction is palpable - social anthropology deals more with nonverbal aspects than sociology by itself.
In general, the signatum of any given letter is a certain phoneme of the language in question. In diverse spelling systems there may be constraints such as homophonous letters or other limitative rules imposed upon the simple relation between letter and sound, but the essence of the relation between graph as signans and phone as signatum remains valid. In logographic script, a graphic entity is in turn endowed with a singleness of its signatum, but here the signatum consists of a lexical unit instead of a phonic one. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 75)
The lengthiest note on the semiotic aspect of graphemes that I've come across.
The growing substitution of printed and typed messages for handwritten ones reduces the emotive and physiognomic roles of script; in this connection one could cite the traditional and still extant custom of writing intimate and ceremonial messages by hand. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 75-76)
And now I've found the emotive function in actual letters (written messages). I suspect that by "physiognomic" he means graphological aspects.
Reading allows one to linger on single passages or even to turn back to preceding lines or pages. Reading and writing involve space while speech is an essentially temporal experience. The virtually lasting character of written communications is, both individually and socially, a most influential factor, which on the one hand secures the relative permanence, the testamental, memorial aspect of the written text, and which on the other hand diminishes the task of memorizing, as can be eloquently illustrated by the astounding memory of the illiterate reciters of thousands of epic verses. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 76)
Approaching grammatology. It is worthwhile to remember the speech/writing and time/space distinctions or pairs.
It is perhaps under the influence of the higher uniformity proper to the code of written language that sometimes the idea of a rigorously monolithic code of language in general captures theoreticians and tempts them to believe in the puerile myth of a perfectly invariable speect community with equally competent speaker-hearers and to apply the delusive idea to concrete operations. However, "real individuals command a variety of related linguistic systems", a variety of styles of speech used in a range of social situations (as was succinctly noted by Chomsky & Walker 1976): "Individuals within a speech community may differ in these respects and speech communities sometimes may vary quite widely in the systems represented within what is popularly called a single language" (p. 21). (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 77)
More on permanent dynamic synchrony. Score for Lotman's heterogeneity and code-switching.
Witol Doroszewski (1899-1976), who was hostile to the idea of relational invariance in the sound structure of language, paid particular attention to the abundant diversity of variants in the everyday speech of Polish peasants which he recorded in his field work. These minute observations are particularly valuable because, contrary to the observer's anti-unitarian tenet, they bring to light the orderliness within the obvious variety. The several exponents of the Polish nasal ę used by all members of a rural Polish speech community near Plock were recorded and described in his French paper of 1935 (p. 28ff.) and, with more detail, in a prevous Polisd report of 1934 (p. 249 ff.). The basic variants stand out against the more marginal ones and the preponderant cases display competition and compromises between opposite tendencies: nearer vs. more distant in space or time, and either disappearing or developing; rural traits compete with urban influence; articulatory memory clashes with lexical borrowings preserving their sound shape. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 78)
Again, vaguely familiar through Lotman. These factors - nearer vs more distant in time and space, etc. may perhaps be considered in the nonverbal domain as well. The general term here is multiformity (as opposed to conformity).
The verbal code and in particular the sound pattern of any language constantly undergo changes. In contradistinction to daylight savings time or to spelling reforms, which can be decreed and enter into common practice on a definite date, the start and finish of a sound change in spoken language go through a period of coexistence; they belong to two styles, two subcodes of the same language, and are actively used either by different speakers or by one speaker who oscillates between the "archaism" and the "modernism". Speakers and hearers may be aware of the time axis to which both items belong, and time itself thereby enters into the verbal system as a semiotic value. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 79)
Again, very familiar. This "permanent dynamic synchrony" as Jakobson calls it is probably evident in most semiotic systems (that is, in most fields of culture). This is especially prevalent in film, as evidenced by the fact that some directors still make black-and-white movies in the 2010s. Especially important is the note that time itself enters into the sign system as a semiotic value. I wrote "sign system" instead of "verbal system" intentionally. An immediate example comes to mind in nonverbal terms in the case of old-timey conventional gestures, such as a wink and a tip-of-the-hat. Some actors watch silent films for the sole purpose of learning archaic hand and facial gestures.
The belief earlier voiced among linguists that the process of linguistic change is never directly observed does not take into account the vital phenomenon of spakers' preoccupation with speech itself and their habitual metalinguistic talk about talking. There are frequent cases of a generational difference between interlocutors, the youngest of whom make use of the nascent innovations which the older ones understand but have not included in their speaker repertory. Similarly, the younger speakers comprehend the older ones although the younger no longer actively use the elements they deem "outdated". Besides such cases of manifest division between speakers and listeners, there obviously also occur frequent instances of mutual adaption in intercommunication between people of different generations. Members of a speech community are competent to use both the start and the finish of the change, and the overall code of the given language must correspondingly be conceived of as convertible. Thus the two stages of a change in progress should be interpreted in terms of a dynamic synchrony. Concurrence and successivity are, therefore, interrelated both in single utterances and in the "overall code" of language (cf. Hockett 1958). (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 79)
More on the metalingual function and it's social aspects. It is remarkable that indeed without using the term "idiolect", Jakobson is using Hockett's work.
The repeated assumption of an essential difference between the 'source' (Saussurian foyer) of a linguistic innovation and the area of its "contagion" and propagation clashes with the fact that any change is a phenomenon of propagation, from a slip of the tongue to its repetition and acceptance first by a narrow and then by a wide collective body; a change and its diffusion appear to be but two facets of one and the same ongoing "contagion". (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 80)
It would be nice to see one lecturer's "slip of the keyboard", isemus instead of sisemus, becoming an actual term, first very narrowly in my own work, and - who knows - maybe later by a wide collective body.
On the other hand there arises a less-than-two person system - dialogues with an older intelocutor are complemented by the child's gradual mastery of a narrowed intrapersonal network of communication. Thus, the child's interlocutor becomes the child himself "as he will be a second after", according te Peirce's view of inner "dialogue between different phases of the ego" (4.6). Here arises a distinction between two kinds of communication, namely "the transmission of meaning by signs from mind to mind and from one state of mind to another" (Peirce: I.445). There emerges the so-called 'egocentric speect' of the younster in the presence of others: the child's former intelocutor becomes a mere auditor while the child himself assumes the roles of both the addresser and the addressee. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 81)
"Intrapersonal network of communication" is a definite hint to Ruesch and Bateson (1951). In Peirce's version it is notable that different phases of the ego communicate by exchanging signs.
Inner speech is radically elliptic; the sound shape of words receives a merely fragmentary evocation inour minds, and frequently they totally lose their phonic makeup ("zero signans"). However, neither there losses nor the tendency to replace verbal signs by other semiotic units permit us to return to an assumption of wordless, or even signless, asemiotic thinking. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 82)
Here we have the conjunction of cue reduction (fragmentary evocations of words) and autocommunication. This connection was made by Lotman in 1967 - one rare occasion when Lotman is ahead of Jakobson.
In an authoritarian state, a scientist, asked by a police searcher what the Greek book on his desk was, answered, "Plato's Dialogues". - "Dialogues? But with whom?" - "With himself" was the alleged and intrinsically right answer. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 82)
If I ever do write dystopian fiction, I simply must incorporate a scene such as this.
The structure of language underlies all of its manifestations, both patent and latent, and there can be no rupture between the structure and its purposes: an afunctional structure and a nonstructured function are both pointless and empty fictions. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 82)
Kind of valuable for understanding Jakobson's brand of functionalism.
Our concepts are apprehended and delineated by the very fact of being named; this verbalizaing activity endows them with permanence in time and continuity in space, and in this way secures and enhances our consevative ties with the past and creative connections with out future by securing and enforcing our intercourse with the environment. Our thought turns into an object of our naming and propositional activities, and our words and sentences in their interaction are converted into independent objects of our thought. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 82)
This can be used to elaborate Peirce's lake of consciousness metaphor and how autocommunication enforces the ties between past, present and future self.
On the other hand, linguists began to turn tehir attention toward the immediate and autonomous significance of the constituents of the verbal sound shape in the life of language. This significance was supposed to be prompted directly by their nature, phýsei, according to Plato's dialogue Kratylos dramatizing the contest between the two permanent linguistic forces - convention and nature. [...] Let us mention here that the widespread use in linguistics, poetics, and psychology of the term 'symbolism' for the figurative relation - phýsey - is at variance with the semiotic terminology introduced by Peirce, who called those signs built phýsei, 'icons', in contradistinction to those based on thései, which he labeled 'symbols'. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 181-182)
This may help explain why Lotman focuses on images and words, or icons and symbols, without paying much attention to indices or indexes. That is, the influence of Plato's Kratylos on Lotman's semiotics should be investigated.
The peculiar "onomatopoeic apophony" (1901: 292), reduplication with a vocalic change in the repeated constituents, attracted Grammont's unflagging attention. There seems to emerge a universal or at least a round-the-world attested law in their construction. Triple groups generally are based on the relation [i] - [a] (sometimes [å] or [æ]) - [u] - e.g. pif-paf-puf - and double formations on [i] - [a] (or more rarely, [u] - [a]), - e.g. pif-paf (or, for instance in German, puf-paf: cf. Spitzer 1927: 215). The persistent emergence of [i] as the first member of such groups contrasted with the following [a] led Grammont and some later examiners to speculate about the specific value of this vowel. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 184)
Connected with the onomatopoeia aspect of the poetic function. Also, compare this to the Estonian spell: "Uri-kuri-muri, vorsti-lortsi-portsi, äka-läka, nika-naka, kaker-laka, juuda-kaka, pergel-paska, sum-sum-mum! Ja nüüd soovin Teile õnne ja rahulist und!" (Kreutzwald 1922: 110).
In a Danish essay of 1918 Jespersen acclaimed the coaction of the factors phýsei and thései in human languages, and in a discussion of the Danish men 'but' broached the question of "sound gestures" nesting in vocabulary, a topic already touched upon in Schuchardt's remarks on the Lautgebärde (1897) and inherent both in Grammont's comparison of articulatory movements, grimaces, and gestures (1901: 316f.) and in his concept of "articulatory gesture". (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 186)
Since I don't know danish, french or german, I must be satisfied with a similar hint by Tadeusz Stefan Zielinski when commenting on Dostoyevsky's sentence "Kak tilisnu [a coined word] (ee) po gorlu nozhom" ["So I slit her throat with a knife!"] - "Is there a correspondence between the articulatory movements in pronouncing the word tilisnut' and the movement of a knife slipping over the human body and penetrating it? No, there is not: the articulation of this word best corresponds to the contortion of the facial muscles which is instinctively brought about by the nervous pain one would feel in imagining a knife slipping over one's skin (and not penetrating the body): the lips are pulled up in a grimace; the throat is pinched; the teeth grit; at such a moment the only sounds that can be produced are consonants t, l, and s, and the vowel i." (in Unspenski 1983: 40).
The ready associability of [i] with small things is explained by the high pitch of the vowel. Jespersen adds that the perception of the small lip-aperture "may have also its share in the rise of the idea" (pp. 284f.), but shied away from the later, often whimsical endeavours to find the explanation for sound symbolism in the speaker's articulatory configurations. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 187-188)
The same stuff as in Zielinski's example.
In some cases to a wider, and in many others to a lesser extent, most languages of the world show a marginal set of vocables which are semantically fluid, more expressive than cognitive, and which open broader possibilities for sound symbolism. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 198)
That is, more emotive than referential.
As the noted specialist in Indo-European etymologies Joseph Vendryes (1875-1960) pinpointed, religiously motivated interdictions against certain nouns were
far from purging the vocabulary of the words judged to be evil. They could be preserved on the condition of being modified in their form, for instance reserved in their sound sequence, in order to become inoffensive [cf. Fónagy 1956: 239]. Herewith is explained a number of accidents in the structure of certain words, notably names of animals (especially wild animals undergoing a hunter's taboo), names of body parts or of physical blemishes, and finally religious terms designating ritual notions or acts. [1924: 383]
(Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 211)
I can very well imagine my own non-existent dystopia having a population register, for example, with everyone's physical blemishes intricately detailed, but always in reverse.
Among the numerous Americas English exclamations collected by E. C. Hills (1024), there is a distinct tendency for stops replaced by stops to maintain their original laxness or tenseness and for sonorants to replace sonorants. Thus God becomes dod, dog, dig; Christ appears as crimp, cripes; damn changes into darn, garn, ding, durn, dang, deen, been. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 212)
A similar case could be made in so-called "black language" with nigger, nigga and nukka.
Multiform wordplays by themselves are striking manifestations of the poetic function even outside of poetry. (Jakobson & Waugh 1987[1979]: 220)
Good to know.

Dominant and sign systems

Jakobson, Roman 1987[1935]. The Dominant. In: Krystyna Pomorska & Stephen Rudy (eds.), Language in Literature. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 41-46.

The dominant specifies the work. The specific trait of bound language is obviously its prosodic pattern, its verse form. It might seem that this is simply a tautology: verse is verse. However, we must constantly bear in mind that the element which specifies a given variety of language dominates the entire structure and thus acts as its mandatory and inalienable constituent, dominating all the remaining elements and exerting direct influence upon them. Verse in turn is not a simple concept and not an indivisible unit. Verse itself is a system of values; as with any value system, it possesses its own hierarchy of superior and inferior values and one leading value, the dominant, without which (within the framework of a given literary period and a given artistic trend) verse cannot be conceived and evaluated as verse. For example, in Czech poetry of the fourteenth century the inalienable mark of verse was not the syllabic scheme but rhyme, since there existed poems with unequal numbers of syllables per line (termed "measureless" verses) which nevertheless were conceived as verses, whereas unrhymed verses were not tolerated during that period. On the other hand, in Czech Realist poetry of the second haly of the nineteenth century, rhyme was a dispensable component, without which verse was not verse was not verse; from the point of view of that school, free verse was judged as unacceptable arrhythmia. (Jakobson 1987 [1935]: 41-42)
Dominant in this sense is very apparent in rap music, wherein you can differentiate golden-age hip-hop that stuck to a definite structure, alternative or abstract rap that focused on the poetics of the rapping, and even forms of hip-hop wherein rapping is secondary to the beat and even wholly irrelevant when it comes to listening experience.
We may seek a dominant not only in the poetic work of an individual artist and not in the poetic canon, the set of norms of a given poetic school, but also in the art of a given epoch, viewed as a particular whole. (Jakobson 1987 [1935]: 42)
I see this in the literary genre of dystopia. The first and most influential dystopic works (like We, Brave New World, and Nineteen Eighty-Four) focused on the "Big Brother" motive, total(itarian) control and forced collectivism - in other words, on lack of freedom/choice and oppressive government, while newer dystopias use these as a kind of backdrop and focus more on biological/reproductive issues, post-apocalypse possibilities and romance. In short, the dystopias have moved from the genre of science fiction to the "young adult" section.
However, this equation is unquestionably erroneous: a poetic work is not confined to aesthetic function alone, but has in addition many other functions. Actually, the intentions of a poetic work are often closely related to philosophy, social didactics, and so on. Just as a poetic work is not exhausted by its aesthetic function, similarly the aesthetic function is not limited to poetic works; an orator's address, everyday conversation, newspaper articles, advertisements, a scientific treatise - all may employ aesthetic considerations, give expression to the aesthetic function, and often use words in and for themselves, not merely as a referential device. (Jakobson 1987 [1935]: 43)
Relevant for understanding the poetic function in Jakobson's model.
From this point of view, a poetic work cannot be defined as a work fulfilling neither an exclusively aesthetic function nor an aesthetic function along with other functions; rather, a poetic work is defined as a verbal message whose aesthetic function is its dominant. Of course, the marks disclosing the implementation of the aesthetic function are not unchangeable or always uniform. Each concrete poetic canon, every set of temporal poetic norms, however, comprises indispensable, distinctive elements without which the work cannot be identified as poetic. (Jakobson 1987 [1935]: 43)
In other words, there is a variety of ways in which a work of verbal art announces itself as such, that is, in this case, as a poem.
In comparison with referential language, emotive langnuage, which primarily fulfills an expressive function, is as a rule closer to poetic language (which is directed precisely toward the sign as such). Poetic language and emotive language often overlap each other, and therefore these two varieties of language are often quite erroneously identified. If the aesthetic function is the dominant in a verbal message, then this message may certainly use many devices of expressive language; but these components are then subject to the decisive function of the work, and they are transformed by its dominant. (Jakobson 1987 [1935]: 44)
Relevant for thinking about the emotive function and how it exactly functions in relation with the poetic function.
However, the problems of evolution are not limited to literary history. Questions concerning changes in the mutual relationship between the individual arts also arise, and here the scrutiny of transitional regions is particularly fruitful; for example, an analysis of a transitional region between painting and poetry, such as illustration, or an analysis of a border region between music and poetry, such as the romance. (Jakobson 1987 [1935]: 45)
Relevant for intersemiotic translation and syncreticism. Illustration, by the way, seems to be the prima facie form of intersemiotic translation.

Jakobson, Roman 1987[1959]. Sign and System of Language: A Reassessment of Saussure's Doctrine. In: Krystyna Pomorska & Stephen Rudy (eds.), Language in Literature. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 28-33.

This question was dealt with much better by the Polish linguist M. Kruszewski, a contemporary of Saussure (and highly estimated by the latter), as early as the beginning of the 1880s. Kruszewski made a distinction between two basic factors in the life of a language, two associations: similarity and contiguity. The relation between a signans and a signatum, which Saussure arbitrarily described as arbitrary, is in reality a habitual, learned contiguity, which is obligatory for all members of a given language community. But along with this contiguity the principle of similarity, la ressemblance, asserts itself. As was mentioned here, and as Kruszewski already realized, this principle plays an enormous role in the area of derivations and in the area of word families, where similarity between words of one root is decisive, and where it becomes impossible to speak about arbitrariness. (Jakobson 1987[1959]: 28-29)
Alas, the origin of the similarity/contiguity distinction. And the argument against arbitrariness seems very similar to Peirce's notion of how symbols grow. That is, verbal symbols are not entirely arbitrary but grow on the basis of icons/images and other, previously existing, symbols.
A purely linguistic semantics can and must be constructed, if we agree with Peirce that the basic property of any verbal sign lies in its capability of being translated into another verbal sign, either a more developed, explicit sign, or, on the contrary, a more elliptical sign, of the same language system or of a different one. This translatibility lays bare that semantic invariant for which we are searching in the signatum. In such a way it becomes possible to submit semantic problems of language to distributional analysis. Metalinguistic identifying sentences, such as "A rooster is a male hen" belong to the text inventory of the English language community; the reversibility of both expressions - "A male hen is a rooster" - demonstrates how the meaning of words become a real linguistic problem through a distributive analysis of such common metalingual utterances. (Jakobson 1987[1959]: 30)
Metalingual function laid bare in metalingual utterances. This raises the question if a verbal utterance about a nonverbal behaviour is "merely an utterance" or is it justified to call it something like a concursive utterance.
In actual reality synchrony is not at all static; changes are always emerging and are a part of synchrony. Actual synchrony is dynamic. Static synchrony is an abstraction, which amy be useful to the investigation of language for specific purposes; however, an exhaustive true-to-the-facts synchronic description of language must consistently consider the dynamics of language. Both elements, the point of origin and the final phase of any change, exist for some time simultaneously within one language community. They coexist as stylistic variants. When taking this important fact into consideration, we realize that the image of language as a uniform and monolithic system is oversimplified. Language is a system of systems, an overall code which includes various subcodes. These variegated language styles do not make an accidental, mechanical [...]regation, but rather a rule-governed hierarchy of subcodes. (Jakobson 1987[1959]: 30)
An explanation of "permanent dynamic synchrony" and it's relation to the subcode-definition of language.
I believe that today our chief task should be to become realists, to build a realistic study of language and combat any fictionalism in linguistics. We must ask ourselves: what is the real linguistic convention that enables exchange of speech in a given language community and serves effectively the various tasks of communication? (Jakobson 1987[1959]: 31)
I am actually calling for a similar move in terms nonverbal communication. The main fictionalism that I'm fighting against is the notion of "body language".
Indices, which the physicist extracts from the external world, are not reversible. He transforms these indices given in nature into his own system of scientific symbols. In the science of language the situation is cardinally different. The symbols exist immediately in language. Instead of the scientist. who extracts certain indices from the external world and reshapes them into symbols, here an exchange of symbols occurs between the participants of a communication. Here the roles of addresser and addressee are interchangeable. Hence the task of the science of language is quite different. We are simply trying to translate into metalanguage this subcode, which is objectively given in the language community. For the natural scientist symbols are a scientific tool, whereas for the linguist the y are more than that, and above all, the true object of his research. (Jakobson 1987[1959]: 31)
So this is what is meant by reversability (in Thorpe 1974, for example). This is relevant for delineating behaviour and communication in the domain of the nonverbal, the first according more to natural indices that are reshaped into symbols, and the second class has its own "objective" life in society.

Translation and comparable transfer operations

Gorp, Hendrik Van 2004. Translation and comparable transfer operations. In: Harald Kittel et al. (eds), Übersetzung: Ein Internationales Handbuch Zur Übersetzungsforschung; An International Encyclopedia of Translation Studies. Berlin: Gruyter, 62-68.

A glance back at ancient rhetoric and stylistics may make this matter clearer. Indeed, it will be beneficial not to consider 'translation' as a text processing activity on its own, but to give it its place within a wider, open concept of text and text operations. (Gorp 2004: 62)
This sounds a lot like what Jakobson did. In this way, translation surpasses "text operations" (or translation pure and simple) and becomes a linguistic, literary or cultural operation.
Lausberg (1960, 251 ff.) mentions adiectio (addition), detractio (abbreviation), immutatio (substitution) and transmutatio (rearrangement). With reference to Kristeva (1974, 345) a fifth can be added: Repetition, understood as identical transformation. After all, however paradoxical, each time a text(element) is repeated, a non-identical relationship to the repeated element arises. (Gorp 2004: 62)
At first sight this reminds me of Lotman's notion of repetition as metaphor, but since it's Kristeva and she dealt with Bakhtin, it may be that this relates to Bakhtin's discussion of how one's own exact words can be used to say something other. E.g., "The devil shouts into Ivan Karamazov's ear Ivan's very own words, commenting mockingly on his decision to confess in court and repeating in an alien tone his most intimate thoughts." (Bakhtin 1984: 221) // The non-identical relationship that arises from repetition is a consequence of the synfunction.
The repetition-transformation is especially important when it concerns diverse text fragments, text elements or constituent aspects. Popovič (1976b, 28) speaks of "reproductive continuation" here, based on the principle of direct speech. Repetition by means of compilation of various text fragments in a large text is an age-old literary phenomenon and has manifested itself strongly in Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages in the 'text genre' of the anthology or collection. Even the cento (patchwork) is built on this principle, although it mostly consists of shorter sections of texts. On the other hand texts can borrow certain elements from other texts so as to give them another meaning in a new context. This is often the case with citations, collages and pastiches (see also section 3. on substitution), while allusion plays on both repetition and reference. The borrowing can also be partial so that the repetition works as an identical background against a different foreground. Thus, 'contrafactures' (Lat. contrafacturae) were often written in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, i.e. new texts written to an existing melody (e.g. sacred texts to secular melodies, etc.). This phenomenon can be compared to present day 'covers' of song texts (cover versions). The intention of these and other 'borrowings' can be of a constructive as well as a destructive nature (e.g. respect, ridicule, polemic). (Gorp 2004: 63)
Exactly what I do in this blog. I like to think that my operation is constructive: the numerous quotes that I collect are supposed to help me remember what I've read, as well as to construct new ideas on the basis of old ones.
Adaption can occur on the level of both form and of content. For example, formal adaption can be found in the 'translation' of lyrical or epic verse into prose or in the adaption of narrative texts to the requirements of the stage (creating dialogue in place of the original text as part of dramatisation and such like) and for a different audience or readership. Indeed, the term adaption is used especially for translations of dramas, adaptions for television and versions for young audiences, probably because the direct impact on the audience is of crucial importance for the success of a production or story. (Gorp 2004: 65)
Adaption in this sense makes a lot of sense, but if I were to "adapt" Powys's philosophy of solitude into estonian, it would not be because of the audience, but because of the differences in language. Powys is too English to be translated word-for-word into estonian.
Technically speaking, adaption is a form of text processing which as it were imposes itself when the cultural context of the source text is unknown or exotic to the target audience and therefore has perforce to be adapted if the 'translation' is to be understood. In the case of exoticism the traslation has the tendency to strengthen the 'foreign' character of the source text as much as possible (historicizing, archaicizing, etc.). Exocticism puts the emphasis on the unusual thematic and expressive linguistic elements of the original. In Popovič's words: "This means a choice of elements that are typical of the culture of the original while being atypical of the style (topic and language) of the translation" (Popovič 1976b, 6). (Gorp 2004: 66)
My example of adapting Powys is anything but exoticism. The idea is to purge exotic elements (e.g. countless references to Dante) from the text so as to simplify it's core arguments.
In the other case - and this occurs much more frequently - translation makes the foreign into something more or less familiar and adapts it to the new readership or audience and its taste, by way of a familiar setting, characters and/or motives for example. (Gorp 2004: 66)
Yup. This is exactly the case. The idea is to "adapt" Powys's The Meaning of Culture in a manner that would be congruent with the local semiotics of culture, for example.
Cases of extreme acculturation through updating and relocating can create the impression of a new primary text, merely inspired by one or more source texts ('after' 'adapted from', 'inspired by', etc.). (Gorp 2004: 66)
Mhm. That's why I wouldn't name my loose adaption of Powys "Üksinduse Filosoofia" (as the original was titled A Philosophy of Solitude), but "Isemuse Filosoofia" (something like Philosophy of Selfhood) so as to keep the original word-for-word title available for a case of a competent translator actually translating the work.

Understanding cultural traditions

Zilberman, David B. & Robert S. Cohen 1988. Understanding Cultural Traditions Through Types of Thinking. Boston Studies in the Philosophy of Science 102: 299-329.

In this consciousness, signs are not conceived as such, as their significance is taken for something unshakeably trustworthy, for a 'thing' populating the ralm of natural experience. (Zilberman & Cohen 1988: 302)
Einstein is also the source for "private signs" (e.g. Morris's personal signs). I wonder if the trustworthiness has something to do with this discourse.
Semiotics, which is successful in studying systems of culture on the side of their 'mythopoetic' content, stops in embarrassment before modern forms of cultural activity - such as science, engineering, etc. Their natural sign-ability still remains hypothetical and in principle has nothing in common with the 'worldly wisdom' of common sense and religion. Representatives of the so-called 'normal science' would hardly favor teh idea of explaining their ways of thinking in the genre of myth. On the contrary, they would reject this idea by indicating that the information circulating in modern social systems is never shaped in 'folklore' patterns, even though it may be comprised by public opinion. (Zilberman & Cohen 1988: 304)
This is probably what Cliffort Geertz is suggesting with his ethnography of thought.
As for the term used here as a denotation, i.e., 'tradition', it should be understood not as an object that actually exists but, rather, as a kind of attitude toward something presumed to be existing retrospectively, i.e., once the position is taken. In particular cases, this attitude may take the shape of an apparent presentation, in the form of rememberance, to consciousness of something previously observed, in some other thing. But since the 'past' is also a relation, this 'something' of tradition can be occasionally found in the 'present', or even in the 'future'. In other words, the traditionalistic attitude displays itself by projecting the present norms against the 'past' with the simultaneous transformation of these norms into values, i.e., the pseudo-objects of reassessment of this 'past' from a relatively 'future' position, that is, from the point of our actual 'present'. (Zilberman & Cohen 1988: 305)
That is, "traditions" are not a given, but social constructions. This is nowhere more apparent than local catholics calling for "traditional" family values - a move by which they project a norm that has no place in modern society as if it is time-proven and mandatory. It is doubtful if Estonia has ever been a truly christian area. Looking back, christianity seems more like a facade that was necessary to cooperate with the rulers.
From the subjective point of view, the deontic modality denotes the significance of action completely devoid of any signability. For example, when someone's order is carried out without delay and without reflection of this command as a 'sign' for action, its deontically interpreted significance is the only real one. Deontic is the spirit within esoteric groups with specific 'inner' emotivism shared by the participants. When members of such groups interiorize an external experience its significational nature is completely effaced. It can be noticed only by the onlooked who does not share in the esoteric sentiments. The situation is quite similar with the individual mystical experience. Properly speaking, mystics of any time and place never claimed that their experience is universal. But they unanimously insisted on its non-significational nature. It can be travestied into signs only with attempts to communicate, so that the popular idea of the basic unity of all kinds of mystic experience is externally imposed. (Zilberman & Cohen 1988: 312)
The understandability of current discourse is underlied by obnubilation and obfuscation that surpasses fashionable jargon. In other words, I have little idea what this text is about.
For example, we may reconstruct the definition of 'sign' (τό σηειον) in the Pythagorean 'semiotic' (τό σημειοτικά). It is not difficult to notie that the structure of their Order was used as a prototype for their conjectural generalizations. The Pythagoreans counted this structure as having three components: the 'esoteric' group of 'listeners' (οι ακροαματικα) who followed the intentions of the protagonist 'speaker' immediately and acted according to the pure significance of his utterings; the 'exoteric' group of 'instructors' (οι μανιάτικοι) who addressed the uninitiated (οι υποφαινομενοι) with 'signs' conferring some meanings; and the mediating group of 'signifiers' (οι σημαίνοντα) who invented the means of construing the sense of the whole structure. (Zilberman & Cohen 1988: 314)
All this sounds very important.
Power will be the partial institution of the 'Tibetan" type. Tibetan society is known as the only genuine theocracy, hence, it is most suitable for this type of label. The basic structure of tradition in this case is constituted not by religion as such but by its enactment as a means of power (hence '-cracy'). In this sense, Tibet is chosen as an ideal representation of all possible variations of the type, including the Soviet one: because the only principle difference here is in the nature of power orientation, which is anthropomorphous in the Tibetan case and sociomorphous in the Soviet one. The main feature of this type is the absurdity of value for the cultural consciousness, which results from the absolute inability to think about free choice. This consciousness is subservient to the 'statutory' norm, i.e., a kind of metaphysical action similar to punching , so that thinking itself turns into an epiphenomenon or a serial reprint of the paramount 'metaphysics'. In cultures of this type, the most important source of normative action is the authoritative text, emanating its ascriptive significance and having its proper meaning only as a derivative. Cultural thinking acquires the features of texture, with an imprint of temperation on the statutory mental behavior - and resolves itself in a series of similar 'textoids', rather than personalities. Since the natural organismatics is normatively imposed by power and absolutely subservient to the mechanics of power, any attempt to display free will and evaluative judgment (concerning the authoritativeness of power) is cut short not by excommunication from the culture (as in the previous case) but by physical extermination (in Tibet, most typically, by self-extermination). Thus the carriers of personal values are transferred to natural non-being. Struggle for dominance, being a kind of implicit re-valuation of actuality, constitutes the content of social life. This is why the sociology of power happens to be the only sufficient subject for investigations in societies of the 'Tibetan' type. (Zilberman & Cohen 1988: 321-322)
Whaddaya know, an approach to power quite similar to Lotman's textual enactment paradigm (e.g. life imitates art).

Uue keskaja poole

Eco, Umberto 1997. Reis hüperreaalsusse. Tõlkinud Joel Sang. Tallinn: Vagabund.

Mida on vaja, et ehitada head keskaega? Eelkõige Suurt Rahu, mis on pragunemas, suurt internatsionaalset riigivõimu, mis on ühendanud maailma nii keele, kommete, ideoloogia, usundi, kunsti kui ka tehnika poolest ja mis ühel hetkel oma keerukuse ja kontrollimatuse tõttu kokku kukub. Ta kukub kokku, sest väljastpoolt pressivad peale "barbarid", kes ei tarvitse olla harimatud, kuid toovad endaga kaasa uusi kombeid ja uue maailmavaate. (Eco 1997: 98)
Düstoopia loomise stuff.
Tegelikult oli varakeskaeg intellektuaalselt tohutu vitaalne aeg (ehk vitaalsemgi kui järgnevad tuhat aastat): barbarite tsivilisatsioonid pidasid kirglikku dialoogi, alles oli Rooma pärand ja orientaalkristlikud vürstid, võeti ette reise ja kohtumisi iiri munkadega, kes rändasid läbi Euroopa, levitades ideid, õpetades lugemist, mõeldes välja igasuguseid hulle asju... Lühidalt öelda, tollal küpses modernne Lääne inimene ja siin võib meil keskaja mudelist kasu olla, kui tahame aru saada, mis meie päevil toimub. (Eco 1997: 99)
Isegi semiootikas oli see "vitaalne" aeg. Eelkõige tuleb siin nimetada Augustinust (354-430) ja Boethiust (480-528).
Beothius, kes tutvustas Pythagorast ja luges uuesti Aristotelest, ei ütelnud peast üles mineviku koolitükke, vaid avastas uue võimaluse teha kultuuri, ja kuigi ta pidas ennast viimseks roomlaseks, oli ta tegelikult esimese uurimisasutuse rajaja barbarite õukonnas. (Eco 1997: 99)
Üpris oluline tähelepanek, sest ka Peirce on nö cenopythagorean mõtleja (või vähemalt pidas ennast selliseks, eriti Esmasuse, Teisesuse ja Kolmasuse suhtes).
Lennake New Yorki TWA lennukil: te saabute täiesti privaatsesse maailma, autonoomsesse katedraali, millel ei ole vähimatki pistmist Panamerican'i terminaaliga. Keskvõim, millele TWA avaldab eriti suurt survet, pakub kompaniile kiiremat viisa- ja tollikontrolli kui teistele. Kui lendate TWA lennukiga, läheb teil lennuväljal viis minutit, mõnda muud kompaniid kasutades raiskate terve tunni. Kõik sõltub feodaalisandast, kellega ennast seote. (Eco 1997: 103)
VIP staatus küll nüüd feodaalühiskonna iseärasus ei ole. Isegi pinnapealselt vaadatuna ei ole siin feodaalsuhe, sest vahetuses ei ole maalapp ja teened, vaid lihtsalt teenus ja raha.
Neil laiadel kahtlastel territooriumidel hulguvad ringi marginaalide, müstikute või seiklejate karjad. Kuna ülikoolides valitseb kriis ja stipendiumi saamine on halvasti korraldatud, on üliõpilased hakanud vagantideks, kuulavad üksnes isehakanud meistreid ja ütlevad lahti "seaduslikest õpetajatest". Peale selle on veel hipirühmi - tõelisi kerjuste vennaskondi -, kes elavad ühiskonna heategevusest, otsides müstilist õnne (olgu siis tegu meelemürkide või jumala armuga; vahe on väike kas või juba seetõttu, et keemilise õnne hõlma alt piiluvad välja erinevad eksootilised usundid). (Eco 1997: 111)
Kas selline oli olukord Itaalias? Millal see tükk üldse kirjutati? 1986. Noneh, vb tõesti. // Inglisekeelne tekst ilmus 1986, originaaltekst itaalia keeles võis ilmuda 60ndate lõpul, aga ma ei ole kindel, sest viitamised pole täpsed.
Nimelt teadis keskaja õpetlane, et autoriteedist võib teha mida iganes. "Autoriteedil on vahast nina, millele võid anda sellise kuju, nagu soovid," ütles Alain de Lille XII sajandil. Aga juba enne teda oli Bernard de Chartres öelnud: "Me oleme kui käabused hiiglaste õlul." Hiiglased on kaljukindlad autoriteedid, kes näevad palju selgemini ja kaugemale kui meie; oleme küll pisikesed, kuid sellegipoolest näeme nende õlgadelt veelgi kaugemale. (Eco 1997: 114)
Niiet see polegi otseselt Isaac Newtoni tsitaat, vaid 12. sajandi filosoofi tsitaat.
Keskaeg on visuaalne periood, tema katedraalid on suured kivist raamatud, keskaja reklaamplakatid, teleekraanid, müstilised pildisarjad, mis peavad tutvustama ja seletama kõike: maailma rahvaid, kunste ja ameteid, ajaaarvamist, külvi- ja lõikuspäevi, usumüsteeriume, episoode kiriklikust ja ilmalikust ajaloost ning pühakute elu (suured eeskujud nagu tänapäeva megastaarid; eliit, kel puudub poliitiline, kuid on suur karismaatiline võim). (Eco 1997: 118)
Siin võiks vaielda, et praegu (st 2010ndate esimesel poolel) täidavad sama funktsiooni videoklipid mida jagatakse facebooks. Erinevus on vb see, et taotlus on alati uudsusele - mõni eksootiline nüanss mis võib imponeerida inimestele üle maailma. (Pähe tulevad näiteks sellised videoklipid kus: elevant maalib ennast ja kirjutab oma nime; National Geographic fotograaf suhtleb antarktikas leopard seal'iga, kes peaks olema ohtlik kiskja, aga hoolitseb kaameramehe eest (pakub talle pingviine süüa); Tiibeti munk vms demonstreerib oma võimeid suure rõngaga; ja austraalias mängib trummar tänaval muusikat prügiämbrutega. St tänapäeval täidab sellist audio-visuaalset rolli youtube jms.

The Way We Think Now

Geertz, Clifford 1983. Local knowledge: Further essays in interpretive anthropology. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books.

The error, as in rather different ways both Boas and Malinowski gave much of their careers to demonstrating, lay in attempting to interpret cultural materials as though they were individual expressions rather than social institutions. Whatever the connection between thought as process and thought as product might be, the Rodin model - the solitary thinker mulling facts or spinning fantasies - is inadequate to clarify it. Myths are not dreams, and the rational beauties of mathematical proof are guarantees of no mathematician's sanity. (Geertz 1983: 149)
This is an important problem. Although it can be simplified as the micro-macro problem in sociology, it rather has to do with how we view certain "cultural materials". In my own study I'm trapped in this conundrum: whether certain symbols and metaphors are individual expressions or indeed belong to a certain folklore tradition.
But such studies did at least open up the distinction between the vehicles in terms of which persons must think, given who they are and where they are, and the perceiving, imagining, remembering, or whatever that they engage in when they get down in fact actually to doing so. (Geertz 1983: 149)
Vehicles of thought depending of who and where the people are vs how they actually perceive, imagine, remember, etc.
Hopi tensors (words denoting intensity, tendency, duration, or strength as autonomous phenomena) drive reasonings so abstract, Whorf said, as to be almost beyond our power to follow. (Geertz 1983: 149)
Vehicles of thought depending of who and where the people are vs how they actually perceive, imagine, remember, etc.
For structuralists, Lévi-Strauss cum suis, the product side of thought becomes so many arbitrary cultural codes, diverse indeed, with their jaguars, tattoos, and rotting meat, but which, when properly deciphered, yield as their plain text the psichological invariants of the process side. (Geertz 1983: 150)
This cum suis translates as "and associates" but it's use is almost like in common parlance the expression "& Co." (e.g. Lévi-Strauss & Co.). The move from thought to arbitrary cultural codes may perhaps be explained with Propp's influence, but this is just a hunch.
For symbolic action theorists [...] thinking is a matter of the intentional manipulation of cultural forms, and outdoor activities like ploughing or peddling are as good examples of it as closet experiences like wishing or regretting. (Geertz 1983: 151)
This is somewhat similar to the cultural semiotics approach, especially when it comes to the semiotics of space or of the city, for example. That is, semioticity is related to intentional manipulation of the environment. E.g. graffiti as the semiotizing of the city space [linnaruumi semiotiseerimine e märgistamine].
We are all natives now, and everybody else not immediately one of us is an exotic. What looked once to be a matter of finding out whether savages could distinguish fact from fancy now looks to be a matter of finding out how others, across the sea or down the corridor, organize their significative world. (Geertz 1983: 151)
As an Estonian, I do feel like a "native". Especially when V. Mikita encourages us to view ourselves as something like Baltic indians. "Significative world" sounds like the "semiotic reality" that F. Merrell and A. Randviir talk about.
To call, as I am about to do, for an ethnography of thought is to take a stand on what thought is by taking a stand on how it is to be thought about. (Geertz 1983: 152)
Here Geertz is a semiotician sui generis - instead of talking about the matter, he's going to discuss how to think about the matter. Sometimes it feels like all that semioticians actually do consists of framing points of view.
My intention is to stress a certain bent of its character: namely, that it is (or, anyway, ought to be) an historical, sociological, comparative, interpretive, and somewhat catch-as-catch-can enterprise, one whose aim is to render obscure matters intelligible by providing them with an informing context. What connects Victor Turner, shuffling through the color symbolism of passage rites, Philippe Aries, parading funeral images of death or schoolhouse ones of childhood, and Gerald Holton, ferreting out themata from oil drops, is the belief thah ideation, subtle or otherwise, is a cultural artifact. (Geertz 1983: 152)
Exactly my point when framing my own study of bygone metaphors for nonverbal behaviour: the relation between sunshine/clouds and positive or negative emotions in facial expressions will not tell us much about the facial expressions themselves, but will tell us something about how people used to talk, feel and think about facial expressions. I'm unable to inform about the context of even this single metaphor because I'm not well versed enough in Christian figures and motives (e.g. "the ray from the sun" analogy).
The most obvious of the directer implications is that, as thinking in this view is a matter of trafficking in the symbolic forms available in one or another community (language, art, myth, theory, ritual, technology, law, and that conglomerate of maxims, recipes, prejudices, and plausible stories the smug call common sense), the analysis of such forms and such communities is ingredient to interpreting it, not ancillary. (Geertz 1983: 153)
Cf. Peirce and how we think only in signs.
It is a matter of conceiving of cognition, emotion, motivation, perception, imagination, memory ... whatever, as themselves, and directly, social affairs. (Geertz 1983: 153)
In other words, it is a matter of performing something like a secondary reflexion (in Mamardašvili and Pjatigorski's terms), so that whatever applies to individuals can be viewed on the level of culture - thus culture, too, has its own consciousness, will and destiny. Here, it is not exactly viewing the culture as a supraindividual whole with emotions, motivations, perceptions etc. but conceiving these as "social affairs" or cultural facts. This has been performed with emotion in the sociology of emotion, for example, and with perception, imagination and memory in cultural psychology (e.g. J. Valsiner).
[...] and to attend therefore to such muscular matters as the representation of authority, the marking of boundaries, the rhetoric of persuasion, the expression of commitment, and the registering of dissent. (Geertz 1983: 153)
I would include all of these "muscular matters" under the rubric of "social power". I believe there are aspects of nonverbal communication in all these matters.
[...] that simply knowing everything in particular one will end by knowing nothing in particular. (Geertz 1983: 154)
This is exactly the problem I'm having in studying nonverbal communication. I haven't "specialized" (to gestures, facial expressions, proxemics, etc.), and it really shows.
It is when we begin to see this, to see that to set out to deconstruct Yeats's imagery, absorb oneself in black holes, or measure the effect of schooling on economic achievement is not just to take up a technical task but to take on a cultural frame that defines a great part of one's life, that an ethnography of modern thought begins to seem an imperative project. Those roles we think to occupy turn out to be minds we find ourselves to have. (Geertz 1983: 155)
Yup. This is why I call myself a nonverbalist. Nonverbal communication is not only what I study, it is a part of most everything I do. I cannot read fiction without pondering over how the author describes bodily behaviour more than I can not pay attention to nonverbal aspects of interactions in films. It is indeed "a cultural frame".
Indeed, when we get down to the substance of things, unbemused by covenig terms like "literature," "sociology" or "physics," most effective academic communities are not that much larger than most peasant villages and just about as ingrown. Even some entire disciplines fit this pattern: it is still true, apparently, that just about every creative mathematician (those men a quattrocento aesthetician once finely dismissed as people who quiet their intellect with proofs) knows about every other one, and the interaction, indeed the Durkheimian solidarity, among them would make a Zulu proud. To some extent the same thing seems to be true of plasma physicists, psychologists, Renaissance scholars, and a number of other of what have come to be called, adapting Boyle's older phrase, "invisible colleges." From such units, intellectual villages if you will, convergent data can be gathered, for the relations among the inhabitants are typically not merely intellectual, but political, moral, and broadly personal (these days, increasingly, marital) as well. Laboratories and research institutes, scholarly societies, axial university departments, literary and artistic cliques, intellectual factions, all fit the same pattern: communities of multiply connected individuals in which something you find out about A tells you something about B as well, because, having known each other too long and too well, they are characters in one another's biographies. (Geertz 1983: 157)
This pretty much captures the way I feel about Tartu semioticians. However diffuse in time and space, they form an academic community - or, considering the almost esoteric nature of semiotics, something like an invisible society or an intellectual cult of sorts.

Teadvus ja sümbol (3. ja 4. ptk)

Mamardašvili, Merab K. ja Aleksander M. Pjatigorski [1997]. Sümbol ja teadvus. Tõlkinud Silvi Salupere.

Termin "sümbololoogia" viiakse meie poolt sisse kui meie töösuuna tähistus, aga mitte kui uue teadusvaldkonna nimetus (mis oleks kohutav!). J aselles mõttes on see paralleelne Husserly terminiga "etoloogia" või budistliku mõistega "pudgalaväda". (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Kiire googeldamine ütleb, et "symbolology" nime alla paigutatakse mingisugust new age jura. M. ja P. motiiv on siin täiesti arusaadav - nad nimetavad niimoodi oma mõttesuunda või filosoofat ja ei taotle uue teadusvaldkonna rajamist. Husserli ja etoloogia seose kohta ei leia ma kahjuks midagi. Kas ta vermis selle termini vms? Igal juhul, kui googeldada tema nimi ja see nimetus koos siis võib leida päris huvitavana tunduva artikli "Human Ethology and Phenomenology", mis tundub nagu midagi mida mul tasuks lugeda ("inim-etoloogia" on Eibl-Eibesfeldti nimetus inimese mitteverbaalse käitumise uurimisele).
Seejuures me mitte ainult arvame, et on olemas selline asi nagu sümbol, vaid arvame ka et sümbol on asi, mitte tingimisi sisseviidav "operatsionaalne termin" või kirjelduse reegel. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
"Sümbol kui asi" on endiselt keeruline mõte. Olen vahepeal võrrelnud seda kuidas Jakobson mõistab Peirce'i sümboleid. Jakobsoni jaoks olid sümbolid sõnad, Peirce'i jaoks rohkem nagu mõttemärgid (nö mental sign) mille vaimset osa nimetatakse kontseptsiooniks (vt CP 2.302).
Sümbolite tänapäevase analüüsi plaan on elementaarne:
(A) Tekstis eristatakse füüsilised kujundid (mitte ainult mõeldavad, vaid vahel ka mõõdetavad), faktid, sündmused, esemed (sealhulgas ka arvud), värvid, konstruktsioonid, maastikud, situatsioonid jne.
(B) Need kujundid, mis eristuvad kui teksti füüsiliselt määratletud elemendid, suhestatakse teatud mittefüüsiliste tüüpiliste seisunditega.
(C) Nende tüüpiliste seisundite tõlgendavas kirjelduses on nad reeglina negatiivsed psüühilised seisundid, millele omistatakse universaalne tähenduslikkus, nagu ka nende asjasus - sümboolikale. St kogu sümbololoogia alates eelmisest sajandist kuni meie sajandi lõpuni on selle selgeks tegemine, kuidas inimese negatiivsed psüühilised seisundid tähistatakse teistis (või elus) sümbolitega. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Punkt (A) meenutab saksa kirjandusesteetikat. Sisuliselt tähendab selline eristamine vististi teksti maailma osadeks lahti võtmist - iga tähenduslik element mida on tekstis mainitud asetatakse abstraktsesse ruumi kuhu kogunevad sarnaste elementide kogumid ja paljastavad oma variatiivsuse. Vähemalt selline on minu meetod. Siin läheb punkt (B) edasi nende füüsilistele kujunditele suhestamisega mittefüüsiliste tüüpiliste seisunditega. Punkt (C) on siin kõige kahtlasem, sest meenutab ähmaselt Freudi psühhoanalüüsi, mis (vist) oli see diskursus kus arvati või levitati arvamust, et negatiivsed emotsioonid on kõige raskemad või keerulisemad, st nad ei ilmuta ennast nii kergesti kui positiivsed - või me ei taha, et nad ennast ilmutaksid. Mõtlesin selle peale eile seoses emootikonidega, millede hulgas vastab positiivsetele emotsioonidele :) ja :D, aga negatiivsetele ainult :(. Ma ei ole kindel kas :/ on negatiivne - see tundub olevat neutraalne või rohkem funktsionaalne. (Leidsin googeldades, et viimastel aastatel on hakatud sooritama midagi nimega Sentiment Analysis of Tweets, mis uurib emootikonide kasutust twitteris.) Kui proovida seda skeemi näite varal järgi, siis Zamjatini Meie tuleb esimesena meelde. (A) oleks lihtne - selles teoses vastab igale isikule kindel kehaosa (O randmed, X-i kulmud jne). (B) tähendaks neile kehaosadele ka millegi mentaalse omistamist, mis on vististi isegi võimalik - need kulmud moodustavad kolmnurga mis justkui mõnitavad protagonisti (mocking acute triangle). (C) oleks kõige keerulisem, sest siis tuleks kogu teos läbi lugeda selle pilguga, et miks peategelane on tundlik mõnitavate kolmnurksete kulmude vastu. Ja isegi siis ei saaks kindel olla, et see tõlgendus on õige. St lõppude lõpuks ei ole mul aimugi kuidas see "elementaarne" sümbolite tänapäevase analüüsi plaan kasulik oleks.
Kuid üheaegselt selle plaaniga eksisteerib ka teine, mis seda täiendab ja on samavõrd elementaarne - kaasaegse sümbololoogia plaan:
(a) Füüsilised kujundid, millest oli juttu punktis (A) omavad teatud üldist tähenduslikkust/väärtust, mis väljub mitte ainult antud teksti või tekstide süsteemi, vaid ka antud kultuuri tähenduslikkuse raamest.
(b) Nendele kujunditele omistatakse tähendus, mis väljub kirjeldatavate või mõeldavate psüühiliste seisundite piirest. Ennem on kõne all juba "inimeste", või "looduse", või "vaimu", või "maailma", või "aja" jne seisundid. Sellega muttub nende seisundite psühhism metafooriks, nad on alati "midagi muud".
(c) Tähistatavate seisundite negatiivsus läheb üle millekski, mida võiks ennem nimetada "mittepiisavuseks", "mittetäielikuks" või "mittelõpetatuks". (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Eristatakse tänapäeva (modern) ja kaasaegset (contemporary) sümbololoogiat. Siin mõistan ma jällegi vaid esimest punkti, sest see millised füüsilised figuurid on tekstid tähtsad ja/või tähenduslikud on kultuuride vahel tõepoolest erinevad. Hea näide on käest kinni hoidmise figuur nö "paarisuhte" tähistamiseks. See olevat nö missionary position tegelik päritolu. St tegu polnud algupäraselt mitte vahekorrapoosiga, vaid tuli sellest, et pärismaalased nägid Eurooplastest paarikesi külg-külje kõrval istumas ja käest kinni hoidmas ja hakkasid seda imiteerima. Kui neilt küsiti selle kohta, siis saadi vastuseks, et nad teevad seda "nagu misjonärid". St tänapäeva kultuuris sageliesinev mitteverbaalne motiiv käest kinni hoidmisest, mida võib märgata näiteks animatsioonides (Wall-E on hea näide, sest selles hoiavad robotid jumal-teab-mis-põhjusel käest kinni), aga Papua pärismaalastele oli see võõras figuur. Selle kujundi umbkaudne tähendus on "õnnelik paarissuhe", mis tõepoolest pole psüühiline seisund vaid rohkem nagu sotsiaalne reaalsus või midagi mille jaoks praegu ei leia head sõna. Kolmas punkt jääb arusaamatuks.
Euroopa kultuuriruumis tõlgendatakse psüühilist haigust kui teadvustatud ellu lülitatuse võimatuse sümbolit. Kuigi me võime samaaegselt sedasama fakti vaadelda kui asjade tegeliku seisu võimaliku teadvustamise sümbolit ja selle järgnevat mõistmist teadvuse mõttes. Kuid mitte haigus ise ei ole siin sümbol, vaid selle kultuuriline "ideoloogiline" tõlgendus, selle sunduslik eetiline kontseptualisatsioon (mille muuhulgas märkis ära Averintsev Tšehhovi ja Hesse puhul. Hesse kirja mõte on lühidalt selles, "et kui seda nimetatakse haigeks, siis ma eelistaks olla haige ja seejuures omada kultuuri", aga Tšehhov kirjeldav "Mustas mingas" protsessi, kus inimene, tervenenud sellest, mida ta pidas haiguseks, kaotab enda jaoks teadvusliku olemise/eksistentsi mõtte). Siit ka pöördumine Dostojevski ja Garšini elulugude poole ja tänapäevane huvitatus psühodeelilistest ainetest (A. Huxley jt). (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Õige väljend on "huvitatus psühhedeelistest ainetest". See kirjaviga osutab tõigale, et S.S.-l endal selline huvitatus puudub. Aldous Huxley juhtub on sealjuures äärmiselt huvitav, sest ta rändas (nagu ka Ameeriklased sageli tegid enne LSD avastamist ja sünteesimist) Mehhikosse, et psühhedeeliste ainetega tutvuda (selletaolist rännakut kujutatakse 1980. filmis Altered States, mis oli ühtlasi peanoogutus John C. Lilly-le). Ka minu lemmik Inglise kirjanik kes elas samal ajal Ameerikas ja lävis Huxley ja Gurdjeffiga, J. C. Powys, jätab oma kirjutistes mulje, et ta proovis psühhedeelisi aineid. Kuna see on seotud teadvusega siis võin pikemalt tsiteerida ühte katkendit mis mulle on südamelähedane: "It seems to me that the first thing such a person turns his mind to is to chance of his having acquired consciousness at all! How extraordinary, how never to be taken for granted, is the fact that in a universe - so full, as far as he knows, of so many inanimate things, and of so many things that, thought animate, possess levels of consciousness apparently very different from his own - he should be saying clearly to himself: - "Here am I, a living, conscious entity, in the midst of all this!" Having realized the miracle of his being what he is - a conscious self in this bleak place - the next thing he does is to ponder on the inevitability of death. He is alive now, he is conscious now; but in a given time, short or long as it may happen, he will be as unconscious as the woodwork of this melancholy window, the withered leaves blown across it, as the raindrops streaming down it." (Powys 1933: 96-97) Mis puudutab vaimuhaiguste osa, siis siin tundub rolli mängivat vaimuhaiguse ühiskondlik tähendus - vaimuhaige inimene ei ole "lülitatud" meie normaalsesse "teadvustatud ellu". Kultuuriline või "ideoloogiline" tõlgendus siinkohal meenutab kangesti seda vulkaani näidet mida Andreas Ventsel armastab kasutada: st kas vulkaanipursest mõeldakse kui seismoloogilisest ja geoloogilisest protsessist, või sellest mõeldakse kui Jumala karistusest vulkaani jalamil asuva linna pattude eest vms. Hea näide vaimuhaiguste raamistamisest on facebookis leviv teksti-pildike mis sai alguse päris koleda kujundusega, aga on nüüdseks tehtud päris ilusaks, hoolimata tõigast, et tekst ise on imal edasi: see ütleb midagi stiilis, et depressioon, ärevus ja paanikahood ei ole märk nõrkusest vaid märk, et ollakse väsinud olemast tugev vms. Mind häirib see näide isiklikult, sest selles kujutatakse vaimuelu keha-analoogia kaudu tugeva või nõrgana, mis minu arvates ei sobi kuskile. Lihased ja luud on tugevad või nõrgad, aju ja närvisüsteem on märksa keerulisemate probleemidega.
Kuid siin on väga oluline veel üks asi. Negatiivseid seisundeid mitte ainult ei sümboliseerita, vaid nad ka sümboliseerivad, olles märgiks (pseudosümboliks) kuuluvusest selle juurde, mis on teadvalt väärtus (kultuur, teadmine, anne jms) ja ei ole teadvus. Sellise sümbolite liigi hulka kuulub ka psüuhiline sümboolika ise. Viimane ei ole vajalik teadvusele psüühika peegeldaval tõlgendamisel nagu teadvuse sisu (või struktuuri) puhul. Sellised pseudosümbolid võivad teenindada psüühilise mehhanismi "tagasitööd" sisenemisel ühte või teise teadvuse struktuuri. Seetõttu, kui räägitakse loomingulise isiksuse kannatustest (haigustest) kui tema loomingulise andekuse sümbolist, siis on see tegelikult pseudosümbol, mis kannab endas mõningaid psüühilise töö, mis ei pea üldse olema seotud teadvusega, vaid on suunatud endale, lisatingimusi. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Aldous Huxley'l oli silmahaigus mis tegi ta poolpimedaks. George Orwell veetis palju aega oma elust pneumooniaga voodis lamades. Pneumoonia kõlab siin vb nagu tüdruku nimi, aga sisuliselt tähendas see, et nt 1984-i kirjutas ta voodis lamades ja oma kopse välja köhides. Mõlema puhul on nende kannatusi kasutatud nende loomingu raamistamiseks. P.S. patomaatia (pathei-mathos) on "õppimine läbi kannatuse".
Siin on kõige olulisem, kuidas me sellist psüühiist tööd teadvustame. India joogide praktikas mõisteti seda üheselt kui psühhotehnikat. Seal pöörati iga kord õpilase tähelepanu sellele, et see on töö ainult enda psüühikaga. See ei tähenda, et midagi muud peale psüühika ei ole, kuid see tähendab, et kõik, millega õpilane tegeleb on ainult tema psüühilise töö kultiveerimine ja seda peab ainult sel viisil tõlgendama. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Selles osas on Vana-Kreeka enese-kultiveerimine millest Foucault räägib subjekti hermeneutikas (The Hermeneutics of the Subject) täielikum. St Epictetus juhendas oma õpilasi mitte ainult tegelema enda psüühikaga ehk mediteerima (meletan), vaid ka kirjutama (graphein) ja treenima (gumnazein).
Sisuliselt, kui me räägime sümbolist selle sõna enda tähenduses, siis me räägime sellisest asjast, mis on lahutamatu teadvuse aktist. Just seetõttu ei saa sümbolit (erinevalt märgist üldse) pidada millekski, millel on mingi sellest erinev/lahknev tähistatav. Lihsalt asjal, mida nimetatakse sümboliks, on külg, mida me näeme psüühika poolt, kuid see asi ise ei muutu, kui me näeme seda teisel moel teadvuse poole pealt. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Olen kohanud ka sellist argumentatsiooni, et kuna sümboli tähistatav on kontseptsioon, ehk teine sümbol, siis võib sellese suhtuda kui paradoksi: sümbol tähistab iseennast.
Kui lingvistika vaatepunktist (vähemalt keele sünkroonses uurimises) on sõna meelevaldne selle suhtes, mida ta tähistab, siis teadvuse metateooria vaatepunktist on sümbol absoluutselt mittemeelevaldne talle vastava teadvuse struktuuri suhtes. See on sümbololoogia kolmas postulaat. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
See on Saussureaanlik seisukoht. Peirce'i sümbolid on märksa huvitavamad. Ta väidab, et sümbolid tekivad suuresti ikoonide põhjal.
Sümbol on asi, mis omab võimet indutseerida teadvuse seisundeid, läbi mille indiviidi psüühika lülitub teatud teadvuse sisudesse (struktuuridesse). Või: teadvuse seisundite akkumulatsioonil indiviidi psüühika poolt ilmutab sümbol võimet viia psüühika teatud teadvuse struktuuridesse. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
See kõlab kangesti nagu "ankurdamine". Näiteks Teadvusehuvi pidav (neuroloogiatudeng) Mart on näoilmeid üritanud kontrollida emotsionaalsete seikade ankurdamisega mingisse teadvuse sümbolisse. See peaks teoreetiliselt toimima nii, et meenutad midagi kurba, rõõmsat, üllatavat, hirmsat jne oma elus ja mõtled sellele juurde mingi vaimse tähistaja, kasvõi mingi sõna, fraasi, kujundi, värvi vms mis aitab emotsiooni märgiliselt ankurdada. Seejärel harjutad ankru kaudu emotsioonide esilekutsumist nii, et see tooks esile ka näoilme ja voila, oledki valmis sotsiopaat kes suudab ilmeid tahtlikult esile kutsuda.
Tuletame meelde, et meie jaoks eksisteerivad sümbolid, esiteks, teadvuse struktuuride teatud spontaanse funktsioneerimise ja sisususte tasandil, teiseks - nad eksisteerivad teisese töötluse tasandil, mis teostub meie poolt eeldataval elu, ajaloo, kommunikatsiooni jne teatud summaarses protsessis. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Mulle jääb mulje, et see sümbolite kahetine iseloom ei ole midagi muud kui mikro-makro eristus. St esiteks töötavad sümbolit individuaali mõtteprotsessides (Peirce'i lõputu semioos, nt) ja teiseks toimivad sümbolid ühiskonnas.
Puht metafüüsilisest vaatepunktist eksisteerivad sümbolid kui sümbolid (aga mitte kui asjad, mis võivad midagi sümboliseerida) ainult tõlgendustes. Ja need tõlgendused ei pea ilmtingimata olema teadvuslikud, st sellised, kus teadvus loeb iseennast. Sagedasti on need sellised tõlgendused, milles kultuur loeb iseennast, andes erinevatele asjadele, kujunditele, sõnadele ja formuleeringutele (mis, muide, tõepoolest võivad osutuda sümboliteks!) teatud sümbolilise tähenduse ja "lootes", et need asjad, kujundid, sõnad, formuleeringud äkki "hakkavad tööle", äkki osutuvad olevat osalised teadvuse olemises. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Taaskord mikro-makro. Esiteks semioos individuaali tasandil ja teiseks semioos kultuuri tasandil, mispuhul kultuurist mõeldakse kui individuaalist.
Teine näide - Nietzsche "teine liin". Nietzsche-poolne oma kultuuri kriitika, tema enda poolt reflekseerimata, st tema poolt enda teadvusliku elu kogemuse eksplikatsiooniks muutumata, sai Spengleri ja seejärel Toynbee tekstides erilist laadi historiosoofiaks (pange tähele, et Nietzsche ei olnud kunagi historiosoof). Selles historiosoofias omandab kultuur alguses jooned, mis teevad ta terviklikuks, integraalseks ettekujutuseks, seejärel mõtestatakse teda kui arenevat organismi ja lõpuks allutatakse sümbolisatsioonile erilise inimülese objektina, mis sümboliseerib kord kollektiivset teadvust, kord kollektiivset tahet, kord kollektiivset saatust. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
See selgitab nii mõndagi meie kultuurisemiootika kohta. Ka siin on kultuur individuaaluülene orgaaniline (st arenev) tervik, nö kollektiivne mina. Siin lisandub oluline aspekt, et kultuuril on oma "reflekseeritud" teadvus, tahe ja saatus.
Kuid kõige olulisem on siin see, et abstraktsioonid omandavad asjade omadused, muul moel pole pseudosümbolisatsioon lihtsalt võimalik. Niikaua kui keskmise inimese tavamõtlemises kultuuri võetakse vastu nagu ilma või toitu, ongi meil juba tegemist pseudosümboliga, mis tekkis kui sellise mõtlemise, mis ei ole võimeline end reflekteerima järgmisel tasandil tõlgenduse tulemus. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Erinevus seisneb siin selles, et kultuurisemiootikas pole kultuur mitte ainult abstraktsioon mis on omandanud asja omadused, vaid abstraktsioon mis on omandanud "elava [küberneetilise] süsteemi" omadused.
Meie aga arvame, et millegi sümbolina tõlgendamine lülitab enda (ja interpretaatori koos tema refleksiooniga) teadvusesse, kui tegemist on sümboli, mitte pseudosümboliga. Me ütleks isegi - "teadvuse stiihiasse", kuna sellel on oma stiihia. Psühhoanalüütikute puhul segas selle mõistmist alati nende lapsik veendumus, et teadvus mingil moel kontrollib mitteteadvust. India joogid teadsid suurepäraselt, et teadvus võib kontrollida vaid iseennast. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Mulle jäi segaseks mis täpselt eristab sümbolit ja pseudosümbolit.
Seetõttu see looduslike garantiide, mis on pööratud mingile inimelu sündmusele (siin armastus) peabki panema sündmuse sõltuvusse inimliku leidlikkuse, oskuse, mõtlemise jne pingutusest, st - sõltuvusse igast kunstlikust loomisest. Ja just selles mõttes on "pärispatt" pahe sümbol, kuna ei saa käituda õigesti või valesti loomulikust asjade seisust lähtuvalt, see saab võimalikuks vaid siis, kui on olemas tuletatav ja teadvustatav fenomen. Ja siis me ütleme, et siin on moraaliprobleem ja seetõttu antakse inimesele sümbolid, mis viitavad patule, kuna inimtegevuse tulemus ei ole kunagi ette antud ühegi loodusliku mehhanismiga. Sümbol "pärispatt" ütleb, et me väljusime looduslikust õndsast seisundist, me ei saa enam pidevalt tugineda meie eest töötavale looduslikule mehhanismile (ja me kaotasime instinkti mehhanismi, mis võimaldab loomal vältida suguühet mingitel momentidel ja kiirustada ühtima teisel). "Pärispatt" sümboliseerib situatsiooni, mida saab kirjeldada sõnadega "nüüd tuleb ise otsustada". (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Jällegi paralleel kultuurisemiootikaga. Looduse/kultuuri vastanduses on olulisel kohal see, et loomulikus käitumises ei ole õiget või valet. Ainult kultuuri (st märgiprotsesside "ise otsustamisega" või valiku momendi mõttes) tekkimisega saab öelda, et midagi on õige või vale.

4. peatükk

Iidsetes kultuurides oli keele kasutamise valdkond tunduvalt selgemalt isoleeritud neist inimeksistentsi valdadest, kus kasutati mittekeelelisi fenomene; ühtedes kultuurides kasutati rohkem sümbolisust, teistes - keelelisust. Selles mõttes võib öelda, et iga kultuur on sümbolisuse ja keelelisuse suhestatuse individuaalne tüüp. Kuid mis on siin eriti tähtis: on võimalik leida selline suletud kultuurisituatsioon, mille sees keele kasutussfäär ei olnud mitte ainult piiritletud, vaid ka väga selgelt objektiivselt/objektselt orienteeritud. St, et keelt kasutati seal seoses kindlate kultuuriliste objektidega, ja me võime leida neid kultuurilisi objekte, mille puhul keelt üldse ei kasutatud ja milles (ja mille jaoks) kasutati ainult sümbolilisi moodustisi. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Mittekeeleline = sümboliline. Erinevalt Jakobsonist, kelle jaoks keelemärgid on põhilised sümbolid.
Me eeldame hüpoteetiliselt, et sümbolisuse ja keelelisuse kui kultuuri kahe komplementaarse komponendi vahelise seose konkreetne iseloom oli tihedalt seotud antud kultuuris valitseva religiooni üldise iseloomuga. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Siin on kultuuri kaks põhilist märgisüsteemi lähemalt Langeri diskursiivsele ja mittediskursiivsele sümbolismile kui diskreetsele ja kontinuaalsele vastandusele.
Võtame laialtlevinud etnograafilise juhtumi, kui "vähearenenud" etnokultuurid kaotavad oma keele. Nad kaotasid oma keele mitte seetõttu, et tõepoolest "unustasid" ta ära, vaid seetõttu, et lagunes sümboline elu, nende keele elu sümbolilised kontekstid, mis olid nende keelele vajalikud funktsioneerimiseks keelena. Ja seetõttu (nagu sellest oli juba juttu teises aspektis ülalpool) on siin nähtav mitte keele hävinemine, vaid teadvuse sümbolise elu häving. Keeled "surid" mitte võõra kultuuri ja mitte viina või teiste tsivilisatsiooni uuenduste tagajärjel/mõjul vaid loomuliku keele akkumulatsiooni, kinnistamise, üleandmise ja kasutuse uute vahendite mõjul.
Niimoodi kaotades märgatavalt keelt, kaotasid need kultuurid märgatavalt sümbolisust. Sümbolisuse kaotus kultuuri poolt rebis tema keele välja teadvuse teiseste moodustiste, mis ei ole veel redutseeritud kultuurilisse vormi, kontekstist.
Igasuguse kultuuri hukk teostub, niipalju kui võib sellest aru saada, alati ühel ja samal moel - kultuuri elementide isoleerimise läbi. St et kui kultuuri elu muutunud tingimuste tõttu lahkus sümbolisus, siis keel, kui kultuuri isoleeritud element, oli sellega juba hukule määratud. Need muutused võivad jääda ka fikseerimata teadvuse elus, jäädes loodusteaduslike antropoloogiliste või etnograafiliste andmete raamesse, kuid just nemad mõjutavad sümboolika saatust kultuurilis-keelelise kommunikatsiooni uute ("progressiivsete") režiimide tingimustes. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Huvitav, kas millegi sellise tõttu ongi "kakskeelsus" ("laias" semiootilises mõttes) kultuuri eeltingimuseks?
Võimalik, et kultuuri "tuum" kui niisugune võimaldab midagi teha kultuuri tasandil ja kultuuris endas, st ilma mõistmiseta. Teha midagi ilma mõistmiseta, mehhaaniliselt, ongi kultuur. (See tähendab selles mõttes, nagu sai öeldud teise peatüki alguses: kultuur on midagi, mis kultiveerib objektiivselt suunatud mõtlemise automatismi.) (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Üksjagu negatiivne määratlus, aga meikib senssi kui mõelda Ameeriklaste määratlusi milles figureerib mustrilisus.
Äärmiselt sarnane situatsioon on jälgitav ka "jõe" kujundi puhul Herakleitosel Efeosest. "Jõgi" sümboliseerib mitte maailmapidi igavest ja pidevat muutumist, vaid teadvusliku elu diskreetset iseloomu, milles psüühiline mehhanism saab fikseerida ainult muutuste üksikuid akte (fakte, sündmusi). Kuna katkematus on teadmise spekulatiivne struktuur, mis on võõras kaemuslikule teadvusesse sisenemise kogemusele. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Marty/Brentano näite puhul saab teadvus fikseerida vaid pliiatsi asumist teatud positsioonides, aga mitte selle liikumise katkematust kui sellist.
Kuid juba see, et me räägime sellest, annab tunnistust, et inimene on selline olend, kellel on "teadmine sellest", mingist tervikust, mille ees inimene on üksi (või eimiski). Ja see teadvus ise ei ole meie aja probleem, vaid on pidev vahend inimese sidemes teadvusega üldse. Omadus, mille kohta võib teatud metafoorilisusega öelda, et see on teadvuse sfääri peegelkujutiseks psüühika mikrokosmoses. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Seda nüanssi võin ma ära kasutada käesolevat arutelu Sherringtoni füsioloogiaga ühendades.
(Toodud näite sümbologeensus peegeldub huvipakkuval moel Vana-India unenägude seletajas, kus unes nähtud (mitte üle elatud) seksuaalakt on surma sümboliks. Samamoodi nagu ka prantsuse arhailises väljendus, kus ejakulatsiooni/seemnepurset nimetatakse "väikeseks surmaks".) Jooga sümboolikas saab see väga selge tõlgenduse: kui inimene näeb unes suguühtes paari, siis see sümboliseerib üleminekut surma ja järgnevasse ümbersündi; suguühe on reflektsiooni sümbol sellises teadvuse seisundis, kus selle kestev psüühiline elu "hüppab" eostamise momendil järgmisesse. (Aga teadmine sellest mehhanismist "upub" puhta teadvuse mälutuses, kust ta jälle "ujub välja" "esmase ahvatluse" absoluutse mittemõistmise teadvustatud aktis (Freudi ja Jungi järgi mitteteadvustatid).) (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Sellest kirjutas Läti-Inglise ajaloolane Vieda Skultans artiklis "Bodily Madness and the Spread of the Blush" (1977). St 19ndal sajandi keskel levis Euroopa meditsiinis suur huvi spermatorrhoea vastu (kui diarrhea on kõhulahtisus, siis võib ette kujutada mida spermatorrhoea endast kujutab). Skultans räägib ka anonüümse kirikutegelase kirjutatud teosest Onania, or the Heinous Sin of Self-Pollution (1710) ja kuidas selles esineb sama idee millest kirjutati Kamasutra's - et sperma tagasi hoidmine (st mittemasturbeerimine) pikendab su eluiga. Siin on ühisjoon "väikese surma" teemaga.
On huvipakkuv, et siin on üks ja seesama sümboolne pilt, üks sümbol. Esimesel juhul on tal retrospektiivne, teisel - perspektiivne teadvuse sümboliseeritavate sisude suhtes. Esimesel juhul suhestub sümbol minevikuga, mis "tõukab" inimest endast välja, teisel - tulevikuga, mis justkui "tõmbab" endasse. Antud juhul on meil tegemist muistsete indialaste struktuurse sümbolise ideega reinkarnatsiooni lõputust jadast, teadliku olemise rekurrentsioonist. Seksuaalakt unes ei ole tegelikult surma sümbol, sest surma ei ole, vaid see on indiviidi lõputu migratsiooni kui teadliku elu puhta võimaluse sümbol. St osutub mittemillegi sümboliks, kuna see sümbol ei saa omada mingit objektset sisulist tõlgendust, sest ei eksisteeri füüsilist surematust. See on selle "mittemillegi", selle kahe teadvuse struktuuri vahelise koja sümbol teadvuses, mis vana-india mõtleja jaoks oli kohustuslik (millest alustati "loendamist") üleminekul ühest indiviidi teadliku elu lõputu kestvuse aktilt teisele. Ja samaaegselt tähendab see, et faktiliselt on teadvuse elu ja see kord ja korrastus, mida teadvus eeldab, suunatud aja voolule vastupidises suunas. Teadvuse elu seisab paigal. Ta pole kuidagi suunatud: kuna psühholoogiline, illusoorne, olematu aeg kulgeb, siis ta näib suunatuna vastassuunas, kuid ta seisab paigal. (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Siin näen võimalust elaboreerida (täiendada?) Peirce'i teadvuse järve metafoori, aga tõmbamise-tõukamise jõud tuleb siin hoolikalt läbi mõelda, sest Peirce'i metafooris võivad nad olla ka vastupidised. Teadvuse elu paigalseisu võib mõtestada nii, et korrastus mida see eeldab on aja voolule vastupidises suunas korrastatud (st me mäletame minevikku), aga minevik ja mälu on vaid projektsioonid. Tegelikkuses on aeg illusoorne. Teadvus ise, st mitte kellegi teadvus vaid teadvus kui selline, on ajatu.
Ja sellega seoses on surma ja surematuse sümbolid omavahel väga tihedasti põimunud. Ei ole ühte ilma teiseta. Nad on seotud selle teadvuse elu omapäraga, selle korrastuse tüübiga, mida ta implitseerib vastukaaluks ajavoolule, millega on seotud idee inimese üha intensiivsemast sukeldumisest kaootilisse, korrastamata teadvusesse. Selles mõttes on teadvus ja tema elu kaosele ja korrastamatusele vastanduv tendents. Kõige huvitavam on meie arvates see, et surma ja surematuse sümbolite allikas on seotud faktiga, et teadvus kui selline - suunatusega täielikule, maksimaalsele mõistmisele - läheb meie juurest ära (või, nagu oleks öeldud Vanas Indias - "läheb endasse"). Teadvus on ju teatud keskkond, milles pidevalt võimendatakse, täiustatakse kõike seda, mis satub teadvuse ja selle sümboolse elu keskkonda. Nii et surma (ja surematuse) sümbol sümboliseerib faktiliselt järgnevat: ainult surres omame me täielikku, maksimaalset mõistmist (või isesust) ja võime täielikult hoomata/haarata oma teadlikku [elu]. Aga kui me sureme, ei saa me seda teadlikku elu omada, sest see lahutab meie psüühilisest funktsioneerimisest, mis ei suuda midagi hõlmata ja on ajaline. (Muide, budistlikus teadvuse teoorias on see suurepäraselt näha "viimase eluhetke/momendi" näitel, kus toimub see "teadvuse haaramine/hõlmamine" kui täielik, absoluutne, mitteprotsessuaalne surija kogu elu, kui teadvuse tagasivoolava sündmuse, mõistmine.) (Mamardašvili & Pjatigorski [1997])
Seda võib kogeda ka ego-surma (ego-death) puhul, mida võib esile kutsuda psühhedeelikum. See kujutab endast teadvustamist, et teadvuse elu liigub vastupidises suunas ajale: teadvuse lõpp on selle tegelik algus (vrd the first become the last and the last become the first kristluses) - surma momendil on sinu teadvus kujundlikult "valmis" ja kogu su senine elu ilmneb hargnemisena olematusse. St mitte nii, et sa sünnid puhta lehena (tabula rasa) ja kogu su elu on sellele lehele kantud selleks, et see oleks sinna kantud; vaid umbes nii, et surma momendil näed sa oma elu liikumas tagurpidi olematusse, lehekülje tühjenemas kuniks see on piisavalt puhas, et võiks alustada uuesti. Ego-surm kujutab siin endast lehekülgedelt ajutiselt kõikide märkide maha raputamist.