Otherness of Self
In an essay entitled “Facts and the Self from a Constructivist Point of View,” Ernst von Glasersfeld takes a Kantian position and shows “how the cognizing subject builds up the idea of fellow experiencers who help to supply stability and a sense of objectivity to the experiential world.” The author comes to accept a Cartesian ego as the basis of the human faith in the self as an active agent. The problem in this position is – shown in the ultimately futile effort of Edmund Husserl to establish an absolute science of the “I” – that we could never build up an understanding of others from the inside out, so to speak. In this chapter, I use interview excerpts in which a science teacher talk about herself and her teaching. I show how it is precisely because people talk about themselves that these Selves are generalized and inherently other. Speakers use genres for telling their auto/biographies, which are populated with characters and plots, so that who they are and can be always already is framed in terms of the other and the general. As a result, the Self is not built up from inside out, nor is it built from outside in.
KeywordsTeacher Talk Radical Passivity Repeatable Instant Substitute Teacher Speaking Subject
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.