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Title: Cartesian Linguistics: From Cogito to Psyche
Submitter: Debaprasad Bandyopadhyay
Description: 1. From where does the ideal speaking subject speak? Where is the locus of
ideal speaking subject? What is about the history (childhood configuration,
neurotic elements) of such ideal speaking subject? Does the outside influence
information of inside (a physical organ, LAD)? What happens to
transcendental Cogito (as postulated in Cartesian Linguistics) or the
competence of creating infinite sets of sentences, when it is subjected to
the outside sociality(threat, violence etc.)? (Here I am inkling towards
Psychoanalysis—to the construct of "psyche" rather than that of cogito as I
am emphasizing on the society-psyche interface).

2. Chomsky, out of his Cartesian anxiety, considers body as a machine. He
deploys technical metaphors ((e.g., The terms like "Computation", 'array"
"interface", "parser" etc., or operations like "COMMAND", "SATISFY", "SPELL
OUT") for explaining human body. These are not metaphors or case of
displacement only, but a case of metonymic transformation of human body as
these technical metaphors condense the scope of human (linguistic)
potentiality. Does human body follow algorithm only at the moment of
speaking? Do we not have extra-/non-algorithmic cognitive ability? (My
point is that Cognitive Domain is not algorithmic only.)

3. Chomskian syntax analyzes the algorithm of "normal" "well-formed"
sentences only. Apart from the exclusion of institution-body corre(a)lation
in the Chomskian hypothesis, this very construction of "natural language"
(e.g., the well-constructed written sentences) mercilessly marginalizes the
language of so-called non-"natural" madness or folly. How do we know the
differences between normal way of speaking and abnormal way of speaking?
This question was initiated by Foucault (1968) to beg the premise of
Cartesian cogito. Chomsky, who is like an old-fashioned physicist, is
interested only in VIBGYOR. However, in the domain of Art (where infinite
sets of colors are illuminating) and literature, there is a proliferation
of "deviations" from so-called "normal standard" (as constructed by the
Ideological State Apparatuses) and without such "deviations" no work of art
or literature or any paradigm shift is possible. Is this domain of Art and
Literature, a domain of unreason or madness or is it un-"scientific"?
Date Posted: 12-Jul-2006
Linguistic Field(s): Linguistic Theories
Philosophy of Language
Psycholinguistics
Cognitive Science
Language Acquisition
LL Issue: 17.2042
Posted: 12-Jul-2006

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