DESCARTES’ MYTH by Gilbert Ryle
ANIMAL COMMUNICATION AND HUMAN LANGUAGE by Emile Benveniste
THE SOCIAL ORIGINS OF LANGUAGE BY Roert M. Seyfarth & Dorothy L. Cheney
LANGUAGE OR PROTOLANGUAGE by Kathleen R.Gibson
THE ARTICLES WILL BE ATTACHED AS SEPARTE FILES, PLEASE USE THE EXACT FILES ATTACHED!!
THE ATTAHEMENTS ARE THE ARTICLES YOU WILL BE USING TO COMPLETE THE 4 SUMMARIES AND 8 QUESTIONS IN TOTAL!
EACH ARTICLE NEEDS ITS OWN SUMMARRY AND 2 QUESTIONS. SO, YOU ARE BASICALLY REPETING THE STEPS FOR EACH!
You are to write summaries of the texts we will be reading and pose questions for further research
What do mean by ‘relative summaries? I mean relative to your own current state of knowledge and understanding. Allow me to explain:
Regarding the summary part of these assignments, there are TWO ideal outcomes.
Ideal outcome 1: A comprehensive summary of all the key ideas of the article/text.
Ideal outcome 2: A non-comprehensive summary that accurately relates a large portion of the article/text, and also clearly and specifically describes the ideas in the article/text that were not understood by you. I consider it an outstanding achievement not only to ‘get perfect’ (as in Ideal Outcome 1), but also to get right up close to your own epistemic limits and describe what you don’t know (yet).
1) What to write on: Each article that appears at the top of this doc.
2) Read the assigned selection very carefully and thoughtfully. I highly recommend taking notes as you go and marking out what you find most significant. As you read, think about something that you might either be curious about or critical of. You will most likely need to go back through the reading once you are done in order to construct your summary, and perhaps read much of it again. Also, take note of what you don’t understand and try to describe what you think the author is getting at or talking about.
3) What you should write:
Part I: Summary section (approximately 400 words)
In the summary, you should try to explain the main points of the assigned reading in a coherent manner. This means that this summary is not just a list of some of the points made by the author(s); rather, it requires that you synthesize what you think the main points are and explaining them in a way that flows from point to point logically. This is actually quite a challenging task, as it requires figuring out what is essential while providing enough detail so as to avoid vagueness.
I’m looking for:
a) evidence of having read all of the assigned material closely – not just the
b) evidence of at least some understanding/interpreting the text in a sensible way.
NOTE: Use of quotations: Your summary must include at least two short, direct
quotations from the assigned text with precise page citations.
NOTE 2: No introduction or conclusion: Jump right in without any introductory
paragraph, and do not recap your main points in a concluding paragraph.
Each summary is too short for these.
For the purposes of the summary, do not simply write that you didn’t understand the section called, say, ‘Society, symbolic culture and language’ and leave it at that.
EXAMPLE : ‘In this section, Barnard seems to be arguing for a certain evolution of kinship systems, but I do not understand all of the theories he’s talking about. The point seems to be that the earliest kinship systems were what he calls ‘genealogical’ and that these evolved into what he calls ‘classificatological’. All I can figure out is that the whole community is initially thought of as one big family; only later are families separated by incest prohibitions, which then turn into all the different kinds of modern kinship systems, which I do not understand. This transition to the ‘classificalogical’ seems to require more developed language. If I were interested in pursuing these ideas further, I’d look up some of the basics of kinship theory in some of the writers he mentioned, like Morgan, McLennan, Levi-Strauss and Bourdieu.’
Part II: Potential research questions
At the end of your summary, pose TWO questions that could be used as potential research topics.
There are many sorts of questions you may pose. Basically, try to think of a question that you would actually like to find out more about or think about further. Alternatively, what might spark the interest of somebody else who has read the same text? This could be an objection to the position of the author; it could be a question in comparison with another text we’ve dealt with; it could be a question about a logical follow-up to the research presented, etc. Use your imagination.
In order to give any other reader a sense of why your questions might be significant, they should include a small preface (or two, if your two questions are not similar to one another or do not stem from the same point in the reading). Here is an example of two questions with one preface:
‘Descartes argues that the best way to discover the difference between the body and
the soul/mind is to notice that, while we can doubt the existence of our bodies, we
cannot doubt the existence of our minds, since you can’t doubt that you are currently
thinking (Principles of Philosophy, section 7). He then defines ‘thought’ as anything
you are aware of. But is it possible that there is such thing as ‘unconscious thought’,
or thinking that you are not aware of? And if so, could the body be ‘thinking’?’
Questions that written well will indicate thoughtfulness and insight into the ideas presented. Poor questions will be irrelevant (e.g., ‘What was Descartes’ middle name?’); overly broad (e.g., ‘Why are we here?’), or superficial.
4) About references and secondary sources: Avoid them if possible!
a) Please do not use secondary resources, just use the links I attached PLEASE!
b) When using the assigned text, just say what page your quotation is from in brackets in the text.