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JANICE

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  • andy_morleyuk
    I found her in the kitchen, Janice, Lying propped against the wall, She really wasn t there at all, A battered Eve long past the Fall, Tear-smudges lying round
    Message 1 of 20 , Jun 1, 2007
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      I found her in the kitchen, Janice,
      Lying propped against the wall,
      She really wasn't there at all,
      A battered Eve long past the Fall,
      Tear-smudges lying round the hall...

      I picked up her plastic shopping bag...
      In it there were -
      A tennis racket,
      Some cigarettes,
      Some keys,
      Money, rings,
      So many sorts of other things,
      Her photo-album journeyings,
      Bottles - Martini and some gin.

      I made her tea and sympathy,
      Not thinking where it all might lead,
      In my room, showed me her life,
      She was some kind of rich-guy's wife,
      Faint bruises all around her eyes,
      Bramble scratched on shins and thighs,
      Loose white dress was stained and torn,
      Déshabille through hedge and thorn...

      A fantasy, her tales, no doubt,
      Attention-seeking desperate shout,
      Except... though she looked lost and worn,
      In her photos, on the lawn
      Of some big house she stood, forlorn,
      But washed and dressed and neatly laundered
      All about there flocked around her,
      Heros, gents and cads and bounders,
      Film stars, pop stars, rich and famous,
      Though her stories seemed outrageous,
      No one could dismiss as lies,
      Those photos spread before my eyes.

      Each ticking moment, chasing fate,
      My sympathy could not relate,
      Nor tea calm down her anguished state,
      The evening hour was passing late,
      My passing patience would not wait....
      Her trying talk would not abate...
      But gradually and round about,
      Emerging her intention out
      Into the open ever clearer,
      Moved toward me ever nearer...

      In the end, ran out of ways,
      Of saying 'no' so had to say,
      "OK, Janice, I am gay..."

      But though I thought I'd reached the nub,
      Still I could not even drub
      That in her head, now here's the rub :

      She saw through me, was not deceived,
      I tried so hard to be believed,
      Spelt out to her how much I grieved.

      "I've not admitted it, you see,
      Not faced my sexuality,
      This is such trauma now for me..."

      Lies did not meet their intent,
      But finally she did relent,
      In the end, Janice went...

      Safe within my bedroom door,
      Meditating on the floor,
      I heard the next-door person call,
      Through that thin partition wall...

      Next morning in the kitchen there,
      Why did everybody stare..?
      Last night's confession had been shared -
      The other guys just didn't care.
      When I'd explained it was all lies,
      Continuing to take the rise
      Dismissing all the hows or whys
      Life just don't give no alibis...

      Then after that unwholesome shock,
      On my door there came a knock,
      With flowers, Janice, to be friends,
      Wanting so much to make amends...

      Andy Morley May 21st 2007
    • Stephen Berer
      Hi all. My impression here is that this discussion group has been somewhat hijacked by Andy Morleyuk. Andy, I think your use of this forum is not appropriate.
      Message 2 of 20 , Jun 2, 2007
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        Hi all.
        My impression here is that this discussion group has been somewhat hijacked
        by Andy Morleyuk. Andy, I think your use of this forum is not appropriate.
        My reasons:
        1. Your first post was a rant. You didn't like a book. I don't understand
        your anger towards this forum because of that. You said nothing substantive
        about the book that would be of value in some kind of public peer review,
        or that would promote active discussion of ideas.
        2. I'm glad you write poetry (Janice), but, to the best of my knowledge,
        this forum is not a place to bypass peer review to get published. Andy, the
        process of submitting poetry to magazines is not necessarily a pleasant one
        (I hate it), but neither is it appropriate to use this forum to publish.
        Rather, if you want to let people know about something you wrote, submit a
        *very* brief comment and a link to your website or blog. Having your own
        site allows you to bypass the poetry submission process, and gives you a
        public presence that is more appropriate than a discussion forum.

        So, perhaps I speak inappropriately, myself. If so, biopoets, please
        correct me. However, Andy, I would suggest that if you want to continue
        this particular discussion, please don't do it on public bandwidth. Please
        email me directly at <steve at shivvetee dot com>, since these are my
        opinions, and mine alone. I do not speak in ANY official capacity.

        Thanx. Steve Berer
      • andy_morleyuk
        ... That s your opinion. My opinion, based on experience, is that people who litter their communication with words like appropriate have closed minds. Is
        Message 3 of 20 , Jun 3, 2007
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          --- In biopoet@yahoogroups.com, Stephen Berer <steve@...> wrote:
          >
          > Hi all.
          > My impression here is that this discussion group has been
          > somewhat hijacked by Andy Morleyuk. Andy, I think your use
          > of this forum is not appropriate.

          That's your opinion. My opinion, based on experience,
          is that people who litter their communication with words
          like 'appropriate' have closed minds. Is that a prejudice
          or a correct judgement..? Let's see...

          > My reasons:
          > 1. Your first post was a rant. You didn't like a book.

          What is the connection between those two statements..?

          > I don't understand your anger towards this forum because
          > of that.

          The book was called 'Biopoetics'. The Forum is called
          'Biopoetics'. The book was recommended in the forum.
          Which bit of that don't you understand..? Is this
          simply a post about your comprehension difficulties?


          > You said nothing substantive about the book that would
          > be of value in some kind of public peer review,
          > or that would promote active discussion of ideas.

          I said that the style of writing was turgid and
          virtually unreadable from my point of view. Do you think
          that poetry should be devoid of stylistic beauty..?

          > 2. I'm glad you write poetry (Janice), but, to the best
          > of my knowledge, this forum is not a place to bypass peer
          > review to get published.

          So poetry is irrelevant to Biopoetics in your view..?


          > Andy, the process of submitting poetry to magazines
          > is not necessarily a pleasant one (I hate it), but neither
          > is it appropriate to use this forum to publish.

          Dude, I am INAPPROPRIATE and in my opinion, people who
          are 'appropriate' are tossers. After all, life is pretty
          inappropriate when you come to look at it..?

          Are you a moderator of this forum..? If no, then your
          comments are inappropriate, and you would therefore
          consider it inappropriate for me to respond to them,
          so I suggest that you write your opinions down on some
          form of paper that is inappropriately stiff and scratchy
          and then insert it into the place from which it would
          be inappropriate for the sun to shine.

          Yours inappropriately,

          Andy Morley

          .
        • Stephen Berer
          Dear Andy, thanx for sharing. Steve We hav lernd: Thare wuz wuns a map that charted the suwwerz Beneeth the ruwinz ov the Vorsaw getto. And thare wuz wuns a
          Message 4 of 20 , Jun 3, 2007
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            Dear Andy,
                     thanx for sharing.
                     Steve

                     We hav lernd:
                              Thare wuz wuns a map that charted the suwwerz
                              Beneeth the ruwinz ov the Vorsaw getto.
                              And thare wuz wuns a map that shoed the tunnelz
                              Owt ov Yerushalliyim tu the Yavna Yesheva.
                              And thare wuz wuns a text a charten the lojjek
                              Frum the Vois on Sini tu the orel Torra.
                     But all that remaenz ar the nervwayz tu the braen
                     And haf remember dreemz in the twilite ov owwer day.
                             from Pardaes Dokkumen (work in progress)
                             http://www.shivvetee.com
                             http://shivvetee.blogspot.com/
          • Jeff P. Turpin
            Dear Stephen and list members-- This week s exchange between yourself and a yearning poet was illustrative of several of the tenets of biopoetics, but most
            Message 5 of 20 , Jun 4, 2007
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              Dear Stephen and list members--
                  This week's exchange between yourself and a yearning poet was illustrative of several of the tenets of biopoetics, but most specifically illustrative of the claim that our works (can) reflect our inner selves.  Thank you for your recent succinct interventions on this list.  Your last post proved that brevity is the soul of wit. 
                  I think the world would be a better place if every computer came with a mirror.  Perhaps more of the people who contribute to lists would simply gaze adoringly at their own reflections until their fingers fell lifeless from the keys.  This would free up a lot of band width, and would also save a lot of us from having to watch them wring their angst in public.
                  Thanks again to all of you for the listserve, and the forum to explore biopoetical issues. JT

              Jeff P. Turpin,

               

              Dear Andy,
                       thanx for sharing.
                       Steve

                       We hav lernd:
                                Thare wuz wuns a map that charted the suwwerz
                                Beneeth the ruwinz ov the Vorsaw getto.
                                And thare wuz wuns a map that shoed the tunnelz
                                Owt ov Yerushalliyim tu the Yavna Yesheva.
                                And thare wuz wuns a text a charten the lojjek
                                Frum the Vois on Sini tu the orel Torra.
                       But all that remaenz ar the nervwayz tu the braen
                       And haf remember dreemz in the twilite ov owwer day.
                               from Pardaes Dokkumen (work in progress)
                               http://www.shivvete e.com
                               http://shivvetee. blogspot. com/

            • jerry hoeg
              I too am getting real tired of Moreyuk. I refuse to read his rants. Jerry Jerry Hoeg ... Fussy? Opinionated? Impossible to please? Perfect. Join Yahoo! s
              Message 6 of 20 , Jun 4, 2007
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                I too am getting real tired of Moreyuk.  I refuse to read his rants.
                Jerry


                Jerry Hoeg


                Fussy? Opinionated? Impossible to please? Perfect. Join Yahoo!'s user panel and lay it on us.
              • Tom Dolack
                Getting to something more substantive, I recall reading somewhere, I believe it was on a blog entry posted to this list, that Lakoff and Johnson s work on
                Message 7 of 20 , Jun 4, 2007
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                  Getting to something more substantive, I recall reading somewhere, I believe it was on a blog entry posted to this list, that Lakoff and Johnson’s work on metaphor has been soundly debunked, but there was no reference cited. Is anyone familiar with any good responses to their work? I think I what I’m referring to his here (it’s been a while): http://scienceblogs.com/mixingmemory/2006/07/metaphor_iv_the_reckoning.php.  

                  Regards to the list,

                  Tom

                • William Benzon
                  That blog entry is good, Tom. Here¹s a recent article that Steven Pinker has cited: ³The Career of Metaphor,² Psychological Review 2005, Vol 112, No. 1,
                  Message 8 of 20 , Jun 4, 2007
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                    Re: [biopoet] Lakoff and Johnson That blog entry is good, Tom.  Here’s a recent article that Steven Pinker has cited:

                    “The Career of Metaphor,” Psychological Review 2005, Vol  112, No. 1, 193-216

                    Brian F. Bowdle, Indiana University

                    Dedre Gentner, Northwestern University


                    A central question in metaphor research is how metaphors establish mappings between concepts from
                    different domains. The authors propose an evolutionary path based on structure-mapping theory. This
                    hypothesis-the career of metaphor-postulates a shift in mode of mapping from comparison to
                    categorization as metaphors are conventionalized. Moreover, as demonstrated by 3 experiments, this
                    processing shift is reflected in the very language that people use to make figurative assertions. The career
                    of metaphor hypothesis offers a unified theoretical framework that can resolve the debate between
                    comparison and categorization models of metaphor. This account further suggests that whether metaphors
                    are processed directly or indirectly, and whether they operate at the level of individual concepts or
                    entire conceptual domains, will depend both on their degree of conventionality and on their linguistic
                    form.


                    on 6/4/07 3:05 PM, Tom Dolack at tdolack@... wrote:


                     
                     

                    Getting to something more substantive, I recall reading somewhere, I believe it was on a blog entry posted to this list, that Lakoff and Johnson’s work on metaphor has been soundly debunked, but there was no reference cited. Is anyone familiar with any good responses to their work? I think I what I’m referring to his here (it’s been a while): http://scienceblogs.com/mixingmemory/2006/07/metaphor_iv_the_reckoning.php.  
                    Regards to the list,
                    Tom

                  • Stephen Berer
                    Thanx William & Tom. I just drive the car; I m not a mechanic, but I was wondering: In this research, 1) how much focus is on the reader knowledge base, and 2)
                    Message 9 of 20 , Jun 4, 2007
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                      Thanx William & Tom.
                      I just drive the car; I'm not a mechanic, but I was wondering:
                      In this research, 1) how much focus is on the reader knowledge
                      base, and 2) how much focus, if any, is on the writer's thought processes
                      (knowledge base and phenomenology)? The few articles I've read have not, at
                      least in any obvious way, considered either of these issues, but they are
                      of particular interest to me.
                      Just curious.
                      >A central question in metaphor research is how metaphors establish
                      >mappings between concepts from
                      >different domains. The authors propose an evolutionary path based on
                      >structure-mapping theory.

                      best,
                      Steve
                    • William Benzon
                      Cognitive metaphor is, in effect, a theory about the reader¹s knowledge base. The writer, of course, is necessarily a reader of his or her own texts. But as
                      Message 10 of 20 , Jun 4, 2007
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                        Re: [biopoet] Lakoff and Johnson Cognitive metaphor is, in effect, a theory about the reader’s knowledge base. The writer, of course, is necessarily a reader of his or her own texts. But as far as I know, the literature says nothing about the phenomenology of the writer’s experience.

                        Bill B


                        on 6/4/07 8:53 PM, Stephen Berer at steve@... wrote:


                         
                         

                        Thanx William & Tom.
                         I just drive the car; I'm not a mechanic, but I was wondering:
                         In this research, 1) how much focus is on the reader knowledge
                        base, and 2) how much focus, if any, is on the writer's thought processes
                        (knowledge base and phenomenology)? The few articles I've read have not, at
                        least in any obvious way, considered either of these issues, but they are
                        of particular interest to me.
                         Just curious.
                        >A central question in metaphor research is how metaphors establish
                        >mappings between concepts from
                        >different domains. The authors propose an evolutionary path based on
                        >structure-mapping theory.

                        best,
                        Steve
                         
                      • spolske
                        ... believe ... Johnson s work ... cited. Is ... what I m ... http://scienceblogs.com/mixingmemory/2006/07/metaphor_iv_the_reckoning.php. ... I d also like to
                        Message 11 of 20 , Jun 4, 2007
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                          --- In biopoet@yahoogroups.com, "Tom Dolack" <tdolack@...> wrote:
                          >
                          > Getting to something more substantive, I recall reading somewhere, I
                          believe
                          > it was on a blog entry posted to this list, that Lakoff and
                          Johnson's work
                          > on metaphor has been soundly debunked, but there was no reference
                          cited. Is
                          > anyone familiar with any good responses to their work? I think I
                          what I'm
                          > referring to his here (it's been a while):
                          >
                          http://scienceblogs.com/mixingmemory/2006/07/metaphor_iv_the_reckoning.php.
                          >
                          >
                          > Regards to the list,
                          >
                          > Tom
                          >

                          I'd also like to know what Chris was referring to. I would however
                          recommend From Molecule to Metaphor: A Neural Theory of Language by
                          Jerome A. Feldman. He was involved in some of the early work on
                          connectionism, and makes quite a bit of the original Lakoff/ Johnson
                          hypothesis.
                        • Mike Tintner
                          Tom:Getting to something more substantive, I recall reading somewhere, I believe it was on a blog entry posted to this list, that Lakoff and Johnson s work on
                          Message 12 of 20 , Jun 5, 2007
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                            Tom:Getting to something more substantive, I recall reading somewhere, I believe
                            it was on a blog entry posted to this list, that Lakoff and Johnson's work
                            on metaphor has been soundly debunked, but there was no reference cited. Is
                            anyone familiar with any good responses to their work? I think I what I'm
                            referring to his here (it's been a while):
                            http://scienceblogs .com/mixingmemor y/2006/07/ metaphor_ iv_the_reckoning .php.
                             
                            This is an area I am v interested in at the moment.
                             
                            My impression is: structure-mapping is largely though certainly not entirely nonsense. I believe that metaphors are mainly forged by the brain overlaying graphics/images of the source and target - how does "the sky is crying" arise? - by a visual and plastic overlapping of tears and raindrops.  It must be stressed though that it is a complex multi-sensory process - so "cool as ice/ cucumber" derive from kinaesthetic not visual comparisons.
                             
                            Structure mapping and symbol manipulation generally are extremely limited as a source of analogies/ metaphors. Consider drawing analogies between "dog" and "cat". A structure mapping of sets of symbolic propositions about each, can by mathematical definition, yield only a pretty limited number of analogies, most of which will be nonsense.  A mapping of two graphics - think outline drawings for a start - of a dog and cat can actually yield an infinite number of analogies between every part of their bodies - and every one will make some sense.
                             
                            My impression is that Genter's work is very pedantic and small-minded - no consideration of more literary metaphors for example - and all the AI systems based on or or related to her work, haven't produced any interesting metaphors or analogies. (Please comment anyone).
                             
                            I think that Lakoff and Johnson are definitely going in the right direction, and the direction that will win out - everywhere in cognitive science/ psychology and AI/ robotics, cognitive embodiment and rationality-plus-imagination are gradually winning out over the pure symbolic, rational mentality that has dominated cog. sci. up till now.
                             
                            But I'm confused as to what exactly Lakoff and Johnson are saying - how exactly they think metaphor work. I've given a pretty concrete idea of how I think metaphor works - I'm not sure whether they'd agree - whether Johnson, for example, thinks conceptual blending works by something akin to structure mapping (or, more generally, some comparison of symbols/words) or some image-inative operation (as I do). Ditto for Lakoff and his metaphorical frameworks.  I'd v. much welcome comments and impressions.
                             
                            This whole area, I believe, lies bang at the current crossroads of cognitive science and the next cognitive revolution.
                             
                             
                             
                             


                          • William Benzon
                            ... That nasty old stuff has been on the way out for 20 years. ... For the most part, Lakoff and Johnson are not particularly interested in literary or
                            Message 13 of 20 , Jun 5, 2007
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                              Re: [biopoet] Re:Lakoff and Johnson


                              on 6/5/07 8:50 AM, Mike Tintner at tintner@... wrote:

                              [snip]
                               
                              I think that Lakoff and Johnson are definitely going in the right direction, and the direction that will win out - everywhere in cognitive science/ psychology and AI/ robotics, cognitive embodiment and rationality-plus-imagination are gradually winning out over the pure symbolic, rational mentality that has dominated cog. sci. up till now.

                              That nasty old stuff has been on the way out for 20 years.

                              But I'm confused as to what exactly Lakoff and Johnson are saying - how exactly they think metaphor work. I've given a pretty concrete idea of how I think metaphor works - I'm not sure whether they'd agree - whether Johnson, for example, thinks conceptual blending works by something akin to structure mapping (or, more generally, some comparison of symbols/words) or some image-inative operation (as I do). Ditto for Lakoff and his metaphorical frameworks.  I'd v. much welcome comments and impressions.

                              For the most part, Lakoff and Johnson are not particularly interested in literary or creative metaphors. They’re talking about the metaphorical structure of large swaths of mundane conceptualization. Conceptual metaphor is about structural mappings between source and target domains.

                              Conceptual blending originated in the work of Fauconnier and Tuner. It’s closely related to conceptual metaphor, but allows for interaction between multiple domains and is about temporary constructs rather than permanent ones (metaphor mappings are regarded as permanent). Blending is also a notion of structural mapping between domains.

                              This whole area, I believe, lies bang at the current crossroads of cognitive science and the next cognitive revolution.

                              The NEXT cognitive revolution? Will that be #3 or #4?

                              BB

                               
                               



                               
                            • Tom Dolack
                              ... exactly they think metaphor work. Mike: You’ve hit on the big problem I have with their work, they don’t know how it works in terms of actual
                              Message 14 of 20 , Jun 5, 2007
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                                >> But I'm confused as to what exactly Lakoff and Johnson are saying - how exactly they think metaphor work.

                                 

                                Mike: You’ve hit on the big problem I have with their work, they don’t know how it works in terms of actual information processing, brain anatomy and so forth. I think they are sitting on something important, but because they work from the top down (taking behavior and working down to the underlying cognition), so to speak, and not from the bottom up (starting with neuroanatomy and such and working up), I don’t feel that their conclusions are anchored very well, and from what I know of the bottom up stuff (connectionism is my best example), their work is not as promising as it seemed at first. It’s something I’d like to get more into over the next year, to see to what extent the top-down and bottom-up approaches can be reconciled, if at all. I have my doubts.

                                Cheers,

                                Tom

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                -->

                              • William Benzon
                                There¹s at least one Berkeley dissertation that involves a neural networks simulation (of physical movement) building up to cognitive metaphor (you can find
                                Message 15 of 20 , Jun 5, 2007
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                                  Re: [biopoet] Re:Lakoff and Johnson There’s at least one Berkeley dissertation that involves a neural networks simulation (of physical movement) building up to cognitive metaphor (you can find the reference in Philosophy in the Flesh). So some bottom-up work has been done, but I don’t know how much. And, in any event, that work doesn’t make into literary criticism based on cognitive metaphor.

                                  On the whole I think there’s probably something profound about cognitive metaphor, but that Lakoff & Johnson et. al. haven’t really isolated it. They’ve been too busy pushing cognitive metaphor as a Theory of Everything. For example, I don’t think they’ve got a very good handle on the mappings based on Journey, which is one of their central examples. I’ve got some notes on that particular example that I  wrote up a couple of years ago that I’d be willing to send to anyone who’s  interested.

                                  Later,

                                  Bill B


                                  on 6/5/07 7:12 PM, Tom Dolack at tdolack@... wrote:


                                   
                                   

                                  >> But I'm confused as to what exactly Lakoff and Johnson are saying - how exactly they think metaphor work.

                                  Mike: You’ve hit on the big problem I have with their work, they don’t know how it works in terms of actual information processing, brain anatomy and so forth. I think they are sitting on something important, but because they work from the top down (taking behavior and working down to the underlying cognition), so to speak, and not from the bottom up (starting with neuroanatomy and such and working up), I don’t feel that their conclusions are anchored very well, and from what I know of the bottom up stuff (connectionism is my best example), their work is not as promising as it seemed at first. It’s something I’d like to get more into over the next year, to see to what extent the top-down and bottom-up approaches can be reconciled, if at all. I have my doubts.
                                  Cheers,
                                  Tom
                                   












                                  -->

                                      

                                • Stephen Berer
                                  Dear Mike and all, ... As I believe most of you know, I m a writer, not a scientist or academic, so I may look at the matter a bit differently than most of
                                  Message 16 of 20 , Jun 5, 2007
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                                    Dear Mike and all,

                                    I believe that metaphors are mainly forged by the brain overlaying graphics/images of the source and target - how does "the sky is crying" arise? - by a visual and plastic overlapping of tears and raindrops.  It must be stressed though that it is a complex multi-sensory process - so "cool as ice/ cucumber" derive from kinaesthetic not visual comparisons.

                                    As I believe most of you know, I'm a writer, not a scientist or academic, so I may look at the matter a bit differently than most of you. For example, I read Mike's metaphor, "the sky is crying" very differently than he seemed to intend it, with its literal rain-tears mapping. I didn't consider rain or tears at all on my first impressions. Indeed, I read-saw-mapped a couple of different images with "cry" as a semi-verbal cry (but *not* thunder; rather an *emotional* cry of pain or sorrow). Yes, now as I unpack it more, I read it as a somewhat abstract, emotional metaphor, with "sky" being superimposed with "mind," and "cry" being more an emotional that sensual phenomenon. As if, say, Prometheus were crying out in rebellion and pain, enchained on Olympus, with Olympus being the sky, and Prometheus being but a wisp of cloud.
                                             I say all that because I think the process of unpacking the way a metaphor works is very complex. But all too often, analysis tries to strip reality of its complexity for the sake of ... what? definable results?  We cannot study the life of a butterfly by killing it and pinning it on a board. All we study then is the shell that contained the life.
                                             Just the other day (6/2) I posted a brief essay to my blog. The essay is part of an ongoing discussion of poetics, but you may find that it has some relevance to this discussion (altho it may not sit well with some of you). I explore the issues of embedding complexity into language, and thus, why I don't use standard English in my poetry. It's entitled " Literary Complexity and its Antithesis, Ambiguity." You can find it at http://shivvetee.blogspot.com/
                                    .
                                             please excuse my wordiness...
                                             smb
                                  • Mike Tintner
                                    BB:Conceptual blending originated in the work of Fauconnier and Tuner. It¹s closely related to conceptual metaphor, but allows for interaction between
                                    Message 17 of 20 , Jun 6, 2007
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                                      BB:Conceptual blending originated in the work of Fauconnier and Tuner. It¹s
                                      closely related to conceptual metaphor, but allows for interaction between
                                      multiple domains and is about temporary constructs rather than permanent
                                      ones (metaphor mappings are regarded as permanent). Blending is also a
                                      notion of structural mapping between domains.
                                      >
                                      > This whole area, I believe, lies bang at the current crossroads of
                                      cognitive
                                      > science and the next cognitive revolution.
                                      >
                                      The NEXT cognitive revolution? Will that be #3 or #4?
                                       
                                      Bill,
                                       
                                      V. interesting - have you got any refs. for where they actually go into structural mapping notions? Like I said, I don't believe that structural mapping of symbolic propositions will produce much of any value. It was good to get Tom's reaction too - i.e. confirmation of the foundational vagueness of their ideas. This is often the way. People in this area often lack the nerve and the ahem vision to harden up their ideas - and deliberately leave things vague. Harnad's ideas about symbolic grounding are much the same, to my mind - he should be saying something much more concrete - much closer to my idea of the brain as a picture tree, processing all info. simultaneously as symbols & graphics & images - but he isn't, he's vague.
                                       
                                      Yes, please send your ideas re "journey" etc. - I think "goal seeking"/ "finding the way to goals"/ "journeying to goals" is the predominant framework, both literal and metaphorical, for all human activities - both in our culture and in the brain.
                                       
                                      I agree, if I've understood you, that their metaphorical networks/ domains/whatever are somewhat arbitrary.
                                       
                                      Er,Gawd knows whether it's 3/4 or 5 - but one can be v. confident that here broadly lies the next cognitive revolution -  cog. sci. is currently "senseless" - conception without sense [a la Kant] - & AI is stalled because of it - in drawing analogies, visual object recognition, and natural language processing, and artificial general intelligence. The next rev. lies in a thoroughgoing restoring of mind to body, intelligence to its senses, and airy symbols to grounded images.
                                       
                                       


                                    • William Benzon
                                      on 6/6/07 9:07 AM, Mike Tintner at tintner@blueyonder.co.uk wrote: [snip] ... I suspect we ve got a semantic issue. Apparently structural mapping is the
                                      Message 18 of 20 , Jun 6, 2007
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                                        on 6/6/07 9:07 AM, Mike Tintner at tintner@... wrote:

                                        [snip]

                                        >
                                        > V. interesting - have you got any refs. for where they actually go into
                                        > structural mapping notions?

                                        I suspect we've got a semantic issue. Apparently "structural mapping" is the
                                        specific term that Genter et al have adopted for their conceptual framework.
                                        But structures are quite general and so is the notion of mapping. What L&J
                                        talk about IS structural mapping, in the general sense; and, for the most
                                        part, it is mapping between symbols of some sort.

                                        > Like I said, I don't believe that structural
                                        > mapping of symbolic propositions will produce much of any value. It was good
                                        > to get Tom's reaction too - i.e. confirmation of the foundational vagueness of
                                        > their ideas. This is often the way. People in this area often lack the nerve
                                        > and the ahem vision to harden up their ideas - and deliberately leave things
                                        > vague. Harnad's ideas about symbolic grounding are much the same, to my mind -
                                        > he should be saying something much more concrete - much closer to my idea of
                                        > the brain as a picture tree, processing all info. simultaneously as symbols &
                                        > graphics & images - but he isn't, he's vague.

                                        Well, your notion of "the brain as a picture tree . . ." is pretty vague
                                        too. You need to specify how that processing is done.

                                        >
                                        > Yes, please send your ideas re "journey" etc. - I think "goal seeking"/
                                        > "finding the way to goals"/ "journeying to goals" is the predominant
                                        > framework, both literal and metaphorical, for all human activities - both in
                                        > our culture and in the brain.

                                        Here it is:

                                        The Journey Mapping and the Brain

                                        I've had problems with the use of journey as a source domain for some time,
                                        but it's only recently that I've had anything useful to say about it. I've
                                        been working on music and ended up reading some of the literature on
                                        navigation (human and animal) and spatial cognition (see citations below).
                                        I now have a few comments that folks might find useful.

                                        1. What's A Domain?

                                        In thinking about language, cognition, mind, etc. I invariably end up with
                                        the brain. So, one of my concerns about the journey domain is: Where do we
                                        find it in the brain? It is not at all obvious just how to go about
                                        locating the various source domains in the brain. It could be that at least
                                        some of them correspond to more or less functionally distinct neocortical
                                        regions. It could also be that a bunch of them are overlapped and
                                        intermingled in the same (possibly distributed) volume of neural tissue. And
                                        there's no a priori reason why we shouldn't expect both.

                                        However, consider what you have to do to actually execute a journey. You've
                                        got to move the body from one place to another. All by itself that requires
                                        quite a large chunk of cortical and subcortical tissue. You also have to
                                        navigate from your starting point to your finishing point. And you have to
                                        eat, drink, sleep, and be merry on the way. It thus seems that, to execute
                                        a real journey, you have to use the whole brain.

                                        That's not a very useful conclusion--hence one of my problems with the
                                        journey domain. However, maybe our primary interest is in the control
                                        structure that pulls it all together. That would seem to be a more limited
                                        set of neural structures. The navigation system would seem to be in limbic
                                        cortex, the hippocampus and associated structures. Of course, the
                                        navigation system is not the top-level control structure for journeying.
                                        The top-level control system is the one that tells as when to perform a
                                        navigational computation (fix current position, establish next line of
                                        travel), when to move, and when to eat, drink, sleep, and be merry. But the
                                        general idea is that we're interested in how all this stuff is controlled.

                                        This line of thought occurred to me as I was thinking about how a brain
                                        would improvise jazz. Of course, there could be a special music module,
                                        with jazz attachment, but I happen to think the whole mental modules line
                                        is, at best, not helpful, but more likely it's dangerous nonsense. I'd
                                        rather think about how to make used of existing equipment. So, the scheme
                                        that occurred to me is that the brain could treat the chord changes (e.g.
                                        the standard I IV I V IV I blues progression) as a landscape. The act of
                                        improvising then becomes one of navigating through the landscape.

                                        Thus, during a real journey navigational control is normally mapped to
                                        visual, auditory, olfactory, sensors tracking the external world. Similarly,
                                        the locomotor control is mapped to the legs. But, during a jazz journey, we
                                        map navigational control to both the internalized memory of the chord
                                        progression and to the auditory world of sound actually being created. And
                                        we map locomotor control to the muscles playing the instrument.

                                        Note that, in suggesting this, I'm NOT talking about the CONCEPTS we use to
                                        talk and think about jazz improvisation. That's a whole other discussion,
                                        one that doesn't interest me at the moment. I'm talking about how we
                                        actually perform an improvisation, or, by implication, how we understand an
                                        improvisation someone else is performing. So, we have the neural
                                        configuration required to execute a real journey in the external world, and
                                        we have the neural configuration required to execute a (virtual) journey in
                                        the musical world.

                                        It's not clear to me just how these two configurations are related to that
                                        required to use and understand the LIFE IS A JOURNEY or LOVE IS A JOURNEY
                                        mappings. I observer, however, that the Berkeley group's neural modeling
                                        makes use of a model of human locomotor control. And it's the control
                                        structure of that model that is, e.g. determining verb aspect.

                                        This brings me to my second problem:

                                        2. What's Concrete And What's Abstract?

                                        It seems that one of the primary things we want from those two mappings is
                                        the capacity to see life/love problems and achievements/goals as analogues
                                        to physical obstacles and goals in a real journey.

                                        So, what's the image schema for the prototypical obstacle? There isn't one.
                                        There's a whole mess of them. Lots of things can be an obstacle in a
                                        physical journey -- a log across the road, a pack of wolves, an avalanche, a
                                        fallen bridge, etc. Each has it's own prototypical form and image schema,
                                        but there is no "covering schema" for the lot. If that is the case, then how
                                        can the notion of an obstacle be a concrete notion? And if it isn't
                                        concrete, then it's useless as the ground for an abstraction. You can run
                                        through the same drill for goals -- landmarks and destinations come in all
                                        shapes and sizes, and even for whole journeys.

                                        Sure, real journeys are physical events in the physical world. You can see
                                        and hear and smell them. Etc. But the notion of a journey itself, its
                                        goals and obstacles, that would seem to be abstract.

                                        Unless, once again, we focus on control structure and control events. What
                                        does an obstacle mean to the control structure? No matter what the obstacle
                                        is, you have to stop and you have to do something. Similarly, landmarks, no
                                        matter what they are, require that you fix your position, check it against
                                        your itinerary, and plot the next leg (if there is one). Finally, what all
                                        journeys have in common is a control structure.

                                        So, the journey domain that serves as the source domain in metaphor mappings
                                        is a control structure. And, when you consider evolutionary matters, it's
                                        obvious that this control structure must be very flexible and powerful.
                                        Primates are foragers. And my colleague Valerius Geist maintains that what
                                        turned a bunch of clever apes into human beings was a long march across the
                                        ecologically demanding African steppes.

                                        This gets at one of my general difficulties with cognitive metaphor. The
                                        whole thing seems like a giant passive data structure that takes the human
                                        body as its template rather than set theory or predicate calculus. Well,
                                        that's a difference. But a data structure is a data structure. It's
                                        passive, it's static.

                                        Once you start storing control structures and processes in your database --
                                        as you have to do in order to make the journey mapping work -- you've got a
                                        different ball game. You have to start thinking about processes. There is
                                        no doubt a pile of recent literature here and there that speaks to this
                                        issue, but I'm not up on it. So I suggest two ancient texts, Norman and
                                        Rumelhart, 1976 (pp. 35 - 65), which I'm sure some of you read back in the
                                        Jurasic era, and Hays, 1981 (pp. 5 ff., 84 ff).

                                        Now for a bonus:

                                        3. Cognitive Domains And Mental Spaces

                                        As I understand it, cognitive domains are more or less permanent mental
                                        structures. Mental spaces are temporary structures, constructed on-the-fly
                                        during thought and speech. We've got metaphor theory constructed in terms
                                        of permanent cognitive domains and blending theory constructing in terms of
                                        temporary spaces. It would be nice to put them together in a uniform
                                        framework.

                                        That's certainly more than I can do, much less do in a brief and informal
                                        email. But at least some of the neural machinery involved overlaps with
                                        that involved in controlling journeys.

                                        The hippocampus is part of the limbic cortex; that is to say, it is
                                        phylogenetically old tissue, older than the neocortex. The rat hippocampus
                                        has been classically associated with spatial cognition. There are
                                        hippocampal cells called place cells which are active only when the rat is
                                        at a certain position in its world. Different place cells are sensitive to
                                        different locales. So, there's a been a great deal of experimental work on
                                        the role of the rat hippocampus in spatial cognition and navigation.

                                        The human hippocampus, at least superficially, seems to be a different
                                        beast. When it is destroyed the person is unable to learn anything new (at
                                        least in so-called episodic memory). They have normal recall for events
                                        that happened before the injury, but no recall for events that happened
                                        after the injury. Patients can carry on a normal intelligent conversation,
                                        and 30 seconds later they've forgotten it. They thus seem unable to
                                        transfer the content of a temporary mental space to long-term memory.
                                        Long-term memory is not necessarily, of course, the world of all those
                                        cognitive domains, which would be part of so-called semantic memory (rather
                                        than episodic).

                                        Now, what, if anything, do spatial cognition and episode retention have in
                                        common? That's a tricky question, though I observe that journeys typically
                                        have many episodes, etc. David Redish (1999) has recently reviewed the
                                        hippocampal literature and reported on some computer simulations of his own.
                                        He thinks the common link is control of context and the ability to segment
                                        the experiential stream into discrete chunks. I can't summarize his
                                        argument here, but it's worth thinking about.

                                        My general point is that it now seems to me that an inquiry into the neural
                                        underpinnings of journeying will also be an inquiry into the neural
                                        underpinnings of the relationship between mental spaces and permanent
                                        cognitive structures.

                                        Literature

                                        C. R. Gallistel, ed., _Animal Cognition_, MIT Press 1992. This is a reprint
                                        of _Cognition_, 37 (1990). See Gallistel's introduction and papers by Gibbon
                                        and Church, Church and Broadbent.

                                        Reginald G. Golledge, _Wayfinding Behavior_, Johns Hopkins Press, 1999.

                                        David G. Hays, Cognitive Structures, HRAF Press, 1981.

                                        Donald A. Norman and David E. Rumelhart, Explorations in Cognition, WH
                                        Freeman, 1976.

                                        A. David Redish, _Beyond the Cognitive Map_, MIT Press, 1999.


                                        4. Syntax As Journey

                                        Now that I've had a chance to think about my previous email it seems to me
                                        that if we combine the thrust of section 1 (WHAT'S A DOMAIN?) and section 3
                                        (COGNITIVE DOMAINS AND MENTAL SPACES) we arrive at the notion of syntax as a
                                        virtual journey. Consider this brief passage from the end of section 1:

                                        ...during a jazz journey, we map navigational control to both the
                                        internalized memory of the chord progression and to the auditory world of
                                        sound actually being created. And we map locomotor control to the muscles
                                        playing the instrument....So, we have the neural configuration required to
                                        execute a real journey in the external world, and we have the neural
                                        configuration required to execute a (virtual) journey in the musical world.

                                        What is a speech string but the trace of a journey through syntactic space?
                                        The jazz musician treats the current chord progression as a space through
                                        which to take a (virtual) journey. Similarly, the speaker treats semantic
                                        structure as a space through which to take a journey. But the semantic
                                        structure is no more unbounded that the jazz musician's sonic space.
                                        Rather, it is bounded by the pragmatic and rhetorical considerations
                                        governing the current speech situation, speech to a certain person (or
                                        group), who know certain things, on a certain topic. That constrains
                                        semantic choice in the way a chord progression constrains melodic choice.

                                        The point, of course, is the possibility that we may be dealing with the
                                        same neural structures in all cases:

                                        1. A real journey through physical case
                                        2. A jazz journey through musical space
                                        3. A syntactic journey through semantic space

                                        And this, of course, brings us to mental spaces. Didn't Fauconnier invent
                                        mental spaces as settings for syntactic journeys through semantic space?


                                        >
                                        > I agree, if I've understood you, that their metaphorical networks/
                                        > domains/whatever are somewhat arbitrary.
                                        >
                                        > Er,Gawd knows whether it's 3/4 or 5 - but one can be v. confident that here
                                        > broadly lies the next cognitive revolution - cog. sci. is currently
                                        > "senseless" -

                                        I don't follow. The literature on visual perception is huge, and there's
                                        quite a bit on sound as well. Less so on touch and taste and smell, but
                                        there is work.

                                        > . . . conception without sense [a la Kant] - & AI is stalled because
                                        > of it - in drawing analogies, visual object recognition, and natural language
                                        > processing, and artificial general intelligence. The next rev. lies in a
                                        > thoroughgoing restoring of mind to body, intelligence to its senses, and airy
                                        > symbols to grounded images.
                                        >
                                        >
                                      • Mike Tintner
                                        Re Lakoff there seems to be a pretty good exposition of his theories re cognitive grammar at v. end of Edelman s Bright Air, Brilliant Fire - and at the level
                                        Message 19 of 20 , Jun 6, 2007
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                                          Re Lakoff there seems to be a pretty good exposition of his theories re cognitive grammar at v. end of Edelman's Bright Air, Brilliant Fire - and at the level of theory, Lakoff is one confused bugger. (His particular observations re metaphors are stimulating). If anyone wants to say a good word for him here, please do.
                                           
                                          Edelman who clearly knows his work in detail and aligns with him strongly offers the all-important confusion re his cog. grammar:
                                           
                                          "in proposing embodiment as the origin of meaning, it does not show HOW this might come to pass. Nor does it show how symbolic idealized cognitive models of language arise as a result of the mechanisms of perceptual and conceptual categorization."
                                        • Mike Tintner
                                          Bill, There s a lot of interesting ideas in your exploration of journey. The missing key I think is to think of journey as applying to ACTIVITIES, or COURSES
                                          Message 20 of 20 , Jun 7, 2007
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                                            Bill,
                                             
                                            There's a lot of interesting ideas in your exploration of journey.  The missing key I think is to think of journey as applying to ACTIVITIES, or COURSES OF ACTION. Then you realise it is more or less fundamental to life and behaviour and you don't need to pin it down to any neural area.
                                             
                                            We have drives - we learn to make journeys (take steps) - to reach goals (literally as crawling, tottering infants) - overcoming obstacles/ problems.to satisfy those drives.
                                             
                                            We start literally taking physical, navigational steps through physical landscapes and overcoming physical obstacles  - then we learn to take "journeys" and "steps" through higher-level landscapes towards higher-level goals - social, informational, erotic etc.. - as we engage in more complex, higher-level activities and make conversation, search for information, have sex etc.
                                             
                                            And the higher-level activities are based on the lower-level navigational journeys and never lose their metaphorical and to some extent literal connection either in culture or in our mind.
                                             
                                            I believe that conceiving of an activity/ course of action as a journey to a goal is the basis of general intelligence - which Artificial General Intelligence is striving for. It's the common framework that enables us to learn new activities. And, I suggest, we do learn new activities by being told the goal and given a rough idea of how to get there - so you learn soccer by being told - "the object is to kick the ball into the goal..." "and you can run with the ball, or pass it to other members of your team"...etc.
                                             
                                            One of the interesting ideas in your essay - and one of the most important truths about our nature - is that we are designed to "improvise" that journey (your word) to a considerable extent - - literally every journey/ activity. We never know the whole way, and always have to find it - even in say writing a post like this. I would use the word "compose" - we always compose our activities/ journeys (albeit often out of many programmed routines) rather than being executors of programs. We are free composers rather than determined executors. The dramatic/narrative arts are stories of our journeys/ compositions.
                                             
                                            P.S. The drives, steps and journeys and even problems are all of many different kinds - and engage many different areas of the body - so no point in trying to pin any of this down to particular neural areas. We are like all animals - a goal-seeking, wayfinding, journeymaking SYSTEM. Any comments?
                                             
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