#3568. literacy は認知上の決定的な差異をもたらすか? (1)[literacy][anthropology]


 literacy のある個人とない個人,literacy のある共同体とない共同体とでは,何かが決定的に異なっているにちがいないと思われるのは自然である.では,読み書きができる,できないという定義上の差異を超えて,何がどう異なるのだろうか.Foley (417) は,当該分野の草分け的な論文を著わした人類学者 Goody の説を紹介しつつ,この点に触れている.

In a seminal study, Goody . . . building on earlier work . . . proposed that literacy is a major force for social and cultural change. He proposed to replace earlier contrasts in anthropological writings between prelogical versus logical mentalities or "primitive" versus civilized minds . . ., or the Neolithic "science of the concrete" versus our modern "science of the abstract" . . . with a contrast between oral versus literate cultures. In other words the invention of writing, roughly around five thousand years ago, was a watershed event in human history, so that societies possessing this "technology of the intellect" . . . are fundamentally different as a result of this invention. Goodly followed this work up with subsequent publications . . ., and this hypothesis has independently been proposed or enthusiastically taken up by a number of other researchers. . . . On the face of it, this suggestion might seem relatively uncontroversial. The members of a literate society are clearly different from those of an oral one --- they can read and write. But Goody and his fellow researchers mean much more than this; it is their contention that the possession of this skill, this "technology of the intellect," leads to major cognitive changes in the way literates think about themselves and their world. Literacy brings about a major cognitive revolution, a revolution best exemplified, in Goody's view, in the flowering of critical and speculative thought in classical Greece, but a potential outcome wherever literacy takes hold.

 Goody の説によると,literacy は「認知上の大革命」をもたらし,典型的に古典ギリシアと結びつけられる批評的・思索的精神の発生を促すのだという.Goody は literacy のこの力はおそらく普遍的で必然的と考えているが,そのように単純に議論することはできるのだろうか.すでに読み書きできる私たちにとって,literacy = "[the] technology of the intellect" という捉え方は,ある意味で非常に自然なのだが,この意見には反論も出されている.その議論については明日の記事で.
 関連する話題として,「#850. 書き言葉の発生と論理的思考の関係」 ([2011-08-25-1]),「#1014. 文明の発達と従属文の発達」 ([2012-02-05-1]),「#3118. (無)文字社会と歴史叙述」 ([2017-11-09-1]) を参照.

 ・ Foley, William A. Anthropological Linguistics: An Introduction. Malden, MA: Blackwell, 1997.

Referrer (Inside): [2019-02-03-1]

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