Conceptual Barriers

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Jon Awbrey

Oct 12, 2021, 2:40:20 PM10/12/21
to Cybernetic Communications, Laws of Form, Ontolog Forum, Peirce List, Structural Modeling, SysSciWG
Cf: Conceptual Barriers • 4

Re: Conceptual Barriers • 1

Re: Peirce List
::: John Sowa
::: Gary Richmond
::: Robert Marty

Dear Robert,

I believe you have pointed to the crux of the matter.

When I arrived on the campus of my first university in
the late '60s there was already in progress some sort of
year-long cross-campus “Colloquium” or “Dialogue” going on —
with many invited speakers and representatives from all the
colleges and departments, springing from the issues raised by
C.P. Snow's 1959 lecture on “The Two Cultures”. About the same
time the University instituted three new residential colleges in
cross-cultural liberal arts, “statecraft” (a mix of history, law,
and political science), and the bridge between science and society.

I confess it was all over the head of a first year student with his
brain buried in math and physics with a minor in beer but I did get
a whiff now and then of a sea change in the air. A Möbius twist of
fate and my room-mate's hankering to find a dorm with a reputation
for better food soon led me to relocate to the residence hall housing
the “relevant science” people. They all took courses with titles like
“Third Cultural Rhetoric” and so I osmoted some of that synthesis from
my brushes with the crew of that Enterprise. Plus I met my future wife.

Poking around the web I see I already began this story two years ago,
in connection with remarks John Sowa made in the Ontolog Forum as to
“Why A Single Unified Ontology Is Impossible”. I've also just realized
how one of the main themes of the present discussion links up with what
I wrote earlier about the “Immune System Metaphor” — so I can save myself
the effort of crafting new syntax by continuing the story as I did before
under the heading of Conceptual Barriers.

Long time passing, I found myself returning to these questions around
the turn of the millennium, addressing the “problem of silos” and the
“scholarship of integration” from the perspective of Peirce's and Dewey's
pragmatism and semiotics. Here's a couple of contributions Susan Awbrey
and I made to the area.

Conference Presentation

• Awbrey, S.M., and Awbrey, J.L. (1999), “Organizations of Learning
or Learning Organizations : The Challenge of Creating Integrative
Universities for the Next Century”, Second International Conference
of the Journal ‘Organization’, Re-Organizing Knowledge, Trans-Forming
Institutions : Knowing, Knowledge, and the University in the 21st Century,
University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA.

Published Paper

• Awbrey, S.M., and Awbrey, J.L. (2001), “Conceptual Barriers to Creating
Integrative Universities”, Organization : The Interdisciplinary Journal of
Organization, Theory, and Society 8(2), Sage Publications, London, UK, 269–284.


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