Is Unconscious Knowledge Possible?

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kennethamy
 
Reply Sun 16 Mar, 2008 10:19 pm
@Glauber,
Glauber wrote:


I didn't make up this definition. That's the way it is defined in a dictionary of Philosophy, and even the author of the dictionary says it is a difficult term to define. He should have heard your advices before publishing his book.



Apparently, you don't find the definition you offered very helpful yourself. If you do, can you explain how to define the meaning of a stapler as for example, a reference to some of the ideas or concepts people may have about staplers, such as mental pictures of it" helps in trying to explain why the girl can be staring at the stapler, but not realizing that she is seeing a stapler. Philosophy should, at least, lead to the clarification of the issue being discussed. I don't find that definition in the least clarifying, nor do I find your Freudian explanation even comprehensible.
 
Glauber
 
Reply Wed 19 Mar, 2008 06:39 am
@de Silentio,
Hi de Silention,

Sorry for replying so late, I've been very busy these days.

de Silentio wrote:
From what I understand, and I am no expert in this matter, one has to be careful when they use Freud in an argument. Hasn't much of what he put forth been shown false?


Not exactly. We could say Psychoanalysis (and Freud) has become today less popular than some decades ago, but it is not the case that it has been shown to be false. Actually, Psychoanalysis (and Freud) has been declared dead since the days of Freud. He himself heard this many times, to wich he replied that it's better to be declared dead than buried in silence.

But even nowadays Freud has been rediscovered, what shows that in many aspects of his work where the scientific community thought he was wrong he was not.

de Silentio wrote:
...and they will eventually find the stapler, which would imply that they once again have the meaning.


Yes, exactly. The observer doesn't lose the meaning of the object forever. The mechanism of repression acts only for a period to avoid displeasure, it is not permanent.

In order to make the mechanism of repression more clear, just think about another instance of a faulty act, the forgetting of words. Sometimes we try to remember a word, but we don't know what the word is, because we "forget" the word. We know it is in the tip of the tongue, but we can't remember it. Our mind then sends us substitute words to replace the one we're trying to remember, but we know somehow that the corret word is not any of those our mind sends us as substitutes. Sometimes we're talking to someone and the person also suggests other words, but we know that the one we have forgotten is not any of these.

But if we have really forgotten the word, how do we know it is not any of those our mind or other person is offering us? Here we have the mechanism of repression. We don't really forget the word, but the repression prevents us from bringing it to consciousness to avoid mental disturbance (displeasure). And as it can be noticed, we have almost always been able to remember the "forgotten" word later. It was there all the time.

What happens with the "not seeing" the stapler is something analogous to the forgetting of words.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Wed 19 Mar, 2008 06:46 am
@Glauber,
Glauber wrote:
Hi de Silention,

Sorry for replying so late, I've been very busy these days.



Not exactly. We could say Psychoanalysis (and Freud) has become today less popular than some decades ago, but it is not the case that it has been shown to be false. Actually, Psychoanalysis (and Freud) has been declared dead since the days of Freud. He himself heard this many times, to wich he replied that it's better to be declared dead than buried in silence.

But even nowadays Freud has been rediscovered, what shows that in many aspects of his work where the scientific community thought he was wrong he was not.



Yes, exactly. The observer doesn't lose the meaning of the object forever. The mechanism of repression acts only for a period to avoid displeasure, it is not permanent.

In order to make the mechanism of repression more clear, just think about another instance of a faulty act, the forgetting of words. Sometimes we try to remember a word, but we don't know what the word is, because we "forget" the word. We know it is in the tip of the tongue, but we can't remember it. Our mind then sends us substitute words to replace the one we're trying to remember, but we know somehow that the corret word is not any of those our mind sends us as substitutes. Sometimes we're talking to someone and the person also suggests other words, but we know that the one we have forgotten is not any of these.

But if we have really forgotten the word, how do we know it is not any of those our mind or other person is offering us? Here we have the mechanism of repression. We don't really forget the word, but the repression prevents us from bringing it to consciousness to avoid mental disturbance (displeasure). And as it can be noticed, we have almost always been able to remember the "forgotten" word later. It was there all the time.

What happens with the "not seeing" the stapler is something analogous to the forgetting of words.


Glauber; you are very appropriately named.
 
de Silentio
 
Reply Wed 19 Mar, 2008 07:57 pm
@saiboimushi,
Quote:

In order to make the mechanism of repression more clear, just think about another instance of a faulty act, the forgetting of words. Sometimes we try to remember a word, but we don't know what the word is, because we "forget" the word. We know it is in the tip of the tongue, but we can't remember it. Our mind then sends us substitute words to replace the one we're trying to remember, but we know somehow that the corret word is not any of those our mind sends us as substitutes. Sometimes we're talking to someone and the person also suggests other words, but we know that the one we have forgotten is not any of these.

But if we have really forgotten the word, how do we know it is not any of those our mind or other person is offering us? Here we have the mechanism of repression. We don't really forget the word, but the repression prevents us from bringing it to consciousness to avoid mental disturbance (displeasure). And as it can be noticed, we have almost always been able to remember the "forgotten" word later. It was there all the time.


So, are you suggesting that whenever we cannot think of something, it is because our mind is repressing it due to bad associations? If you are, this is quite the generalization.

Your statement reflects the fundamental problem with Frued, he made a lot of generalizations. The Oedipus Complex is an exmaple. It seems that Frued looked for problems that people have, then just started taking guesses at what fit, then rationalized why it was right.

But then again, I don't know much about Freud.
 
Glauber
 
Reply Thu 20 Mar, 2008 06:35 am
@de Silentio,
de Silentio wrote:
So, are you suggesting that whenever we cannot think of something, it is because our mind is repressing it due to bad associations? If you are, this is quite the generalization.

Your statement reflects the fundamental problem with Frued, he made a lot of generalizations. The Oedipus Complex is an exmaple. It seems that Frued looked for problems that people have, then just started taking guesses at what fit, then rationalized why it was right.

But then again, I don't know much about Freud.


No, I'm not suggesting that whenever we cannot think of something, it is due to the mechanism of repression. I just think that the Freudian explanation covers most of the cases, and this can be shown through analysis. But certainly there may be other reasons. By the other way, I don't think that physicalist explanations can explain as well as Psychoanalysis these occurrences.

I agree with you when you say about the generalizations of Freud. But generalizations, as far as I can see, have nothing to do with the arguments themselves, but with the power of explanation one gives them.

But as to the Oedipux Complex, I don't think it is a case of a Freudian hasty generalization.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Thu 20 Mar, 2008 07:10 am
@de Silentio,
de Silentio wrote:
So, are you suggesting that whenever we cannot think of something, it is because our mind is repressing it due to bad associations? If you are, this is quite the generalization.

Your statement reflects the fundamental problem with Frued, he made a lot of generalizations. The Oedipus Complex is an exmaple. It seems that Frued looked for problems that people have, then just started taking guesses at what fit, then rationalized why it was right.

But then again, I don't know much about Freud.


Biologists make a lot of generalizations too, like all whales are mammals. The trouble with Freud's is that they were vague and untestable. The second often because of the first. I have to admit, many of them "ring true". But rings are not much of a test for scientists.
 
 

 
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