A critical assessment of universals of

Michel-Rolph Trouillot The world became global in the sixteenth century. Europe became Europe in part by severing Latin Christendom from what lay south of the Mediterranean, but also through a westward move that made the Atlantic the center of the first planetary empires. As such empires overlapped or succeeded one another within the modern world system, they brought populations from all continents closer in time and space. The rise of the West, the conquest of the Americas, plantation slavery, the Industrial Revolution, and the population flows of the nineteenth century can be summarized as "a first moment of globality," an Atlantic moment culminating in U.

A critical assessment of universals of

Against the grain of such anti-universalist sentiments, I should like to address in this essay, first, contentions over the status of literary universals and universals in general and, second, in broad-brush fashion, propose possible candidates for universals themselves.

Moreland, analytic philosophers usually fall within three major schools of thought regarding the nature of properties: Many literary theorists, most notably Derrida, have taken up the extreme nominalist position.

Rather than merely contest the relationship between language and what we might believe exists in the world, for Derrida language is all-encompassing: An obvious example of an HPC would be the human heart, whose structure and function are clearly persistent over time, even if in evolutionary time the heart has been modified by natural, selective pressures as well as a host of man-made pressures, such as high-cholesterol diets.

A less obvious example of an HPC would be the amygdala, whose structure and function has persisted over evolutionary time for millions of years: An HPC, then, can designate anything, from a discrete biological system, non-aesthetic properties underlying aesthetic concepts e.

To clarify with an analogy: The same has been said about universality in the arts. Literary theorists have long championed the centrality of universals, most notably E.

Alas, literary movements—and academic careers, for that matter—routinely revolve around denying universalism altogether, going so far as to claim that there is no shared response to anything, only culturally contingent interpretations Bohannan; Stanley Fish Is There; Smith Contingencies of Value.

Even a few neuroscientists seem to have taken up the anti-universalist banner. In her critique of emotional natural kinds, Barrett confuses the wholephenomenology of emotion—all its complex expressive variations—withpartsof the brain whose properties reputedly evolved to express emotions, such as the amygdaloid complex.

Social constructive elements certainly modulate emotions: I cannot fear a ghost unless I have been indoctrinated with a belief in ghosts, first. However, what binds all emotional semantic categories together, across-cultures, are neurobiological substrata in our mind-brains that facilitate emotional expressions, generally.

Put another way, if a universal psychological system—such as one dedicated to processing disgust—is also involved in processing other kinds of affective responses, such as moral repugnance, then that system cannot be said to lack functional specialization fora particular, natural kind of emotion.

And most recent neuroscientific reviews on kinds of emotion bear this argument out: The same could be said for other kinds of emotions, such as disgust, and, yes, even love.

Patrick Colm Hogan elaborates on this lesson in one of his recent books, Beauty and Sublimity. On the contrary, that we all share a visual system in kinddoes not entail uniformity in representational function, in particular.

Would they be textual, psychological, biological, perceptual? If there is no invariant substrate in the mind or in literary works that, say, is shown to be active for all of us when responding to the death of Romeo and Juliet, then there is nothing foundational upon which to warrant claims of literary universality.

Literary universals must, on this view, rest on epistemological substrates that are stable enough, across individuals, to warrant claims of universality. Epistemological substrata organize around universal systems in the mind-brain. Literary universals, thus, can be better understood as mind-dependently objective, that is, as classifiable kinds of interactions between real observable, measurable physical structures in our minds, textual forms, and how we respond to them.

Literary universals are demarcated not by the moment-by-moment state-space of reception but by homeostatic property clusters HPCs of various kinds, such as recurring emotional responses fear, love, jealousy ; cognitive universals, such as the limitations of short-term memory, theory-of-mind, the influence of attention on memory; as well as narrative universals recurring literary motifs, tropes, themes, and the like.

There is no single place a literary universal resides; rather, literary universals like most kinds of universality emergefrom particular minds, texts, and social norms. Emotion and literary universals So far, I have argued that literary universals are contingent, first, on shared cognitive and perceptual systems that allow us to detect and respond to works containing rewarding or punishing aesthetic experiences; both rewarding and punishing kinds of reading experience form a solid bedrock upon which claims of universal value can rest.

What you find rewarding or punishing may differ, significantly, from what I find rewarding or punishing, as Hogan details in his works Beauty and Sublimity; The Mind and Its Stories; What Literature Teaches Us About Emotion ; however, interpretive variance does not militate against our ability to classify and make use of literary universals.

Cross-cultural criticism, for that matter, would not be possible without identifying shared domains of representation.

Universal Intellectual Standards

Absent of stifling reductionism in his treatment of romantic love, Hogan offers a nuanced account of divergent reception, between readers, as well as how cultural norms inflect universal kinds of emotional content. Second, I have argued that literary universals of any kind, be they cognitive or non-cognitive are emergentfrom objective yet mind-dependent properties.

Emergentism conjoins textual, psychological, and social properties, together, in the making of an aesthetic impression and value; an interactionist approach to reader-response, on my account, is compatible with universal kinds of substrate in the mind-brain and likely also at the level of textual forms again, without any recourse to strong objectivist or essentialist claims about human nature.

First, perhaps the strongest candidate for a literary universal neurobiological substrate is emotional kinds of response.

There has been extensive debate in neuroscience literature on whether emotions can be seen as natural kinds of evolved structures or as socially relative phenomena Barrett et al. As I have suggested, anti-universalists in this debate draw on nominalist arguments against the possibility of properties with shared structures in the world or mind-body ; either this, or it is thought that interactions between minds, texts, and cultural norms are so complex and varied over time that it makes no sense to appeal to anything universal about the reading experience Smith Contingencies of Value.There are many standards appropriate to the assessment of thinking as it might occur in this or that context, but some standards are virtually universal (that is, applicable to all thinking): clarity, precision, accuracy, relevance, depth, breadth, and logic.

Coordinators enter ISSET scores in PBIS Assessment on behalf of the school. Both coordinators and school teams can review ISSET reports in PBIS Assessment.

When: First year Tier II and Tier III implementers may conduct a pre- and post-evaluation in the fall and spring respectively – moving to an annual assessment in subsequent years.

Many schools choose to conduct the ISSET annually. A Critical Assessment of the Resource Depletion Potential of Current and Future Lithium-Ion Batteries Jens F.

Peters 1, * and Marcel Weil 1,2. A CRITICAL ASSESSMENT OF THE EXERCISE OF. UNIVERSAL JURISDICTION BY SOUTH AFRICAN COURTS. Christopher Burke. Thesis presented for the degree of Master of Law at. Stellenbosch University. Department of Public Law.

Faculty of Law. the exercise of universal jurisdiction. Law.

A critical assessment of universals of

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The Analysis & Assessment of Thinking