Re: [OPE] Diversity and Unity

Date: Tue Apr 15 2008 - 08:38:16 EDT

 Paul Z,

sorry for the delay. We have only one family computer at home with four people using it. So I cant always be as quick as I like. Your first question I have already answered partly with our computer example. Any tree is member of some sort of a tree family which in turn is as a tree family member of a much larger tree famliy. So if you say "a tree" you relate one tree to the lager family. But if you say an oak tree you relate that tree to its closer family implying that there are many other families making up a lager tree family. In that case oak there refers to unity in relation one oak tree. But oak tree as a particular tree family refers also to diversity in relation to other tree families. The concept employed here to establish families or more properly classes of things is abstraction. The more you abstract the higher you come in establishing new forms of diversities and unities. So if you say nature you are using one of the most abstract and comprehensive categories here. But it relates to society. The most abstract category we use is therefore BEING including everything.

Similarly, DELL signifies unity in relation to individual (particular) Dell computers and to other classes of computers, say, Siemens, but it signifies at the same time diversity in the sense that it is not Siemens computer. If you say computer you establish a unity of all sorts of computer families.
You say the concept of unity is slippery. Fine. Dialectics requires that we think that everything is in motion. From one aspect something may refer to unity, but from another aspect it may refer to diversity. I hope that makes sense. 


-----Ursprüngliche Mitteilung----- 
Von: Paul Zarembka <>
An: Outline on Political Economy mailing list <>
Verschickt: Sa., 12. Apr. 2008, 17:07
Thema: Re: [OPE] Diversity and Unity

--On 4/10/2008 3:29 AM -0400 wrote: 

> When you say "a" you refer to a particular tree, implying that there are 

> many other particular trees. But when you say 'TREE' you refer to the 

> NATURE of that one tree and herewith you link it to many other trees and 

> you establish thereby a class of objects by referring to their nature. In 

> short, in your example "a" refers to diversity and "tree" to unity: "a 

> tree" refers to diversity and unity at the same time. 


Let me reply only to the above.  I note that unity above refers to TREE. 
But TREE is within a much, much larger natural context so why is TREE the 
unity and not any other larger natural context>  In the opposite direction, 
why not OAK TREE instead of that larger category TREE? 

And let's move quickly to political economy.  Where is unity in this 
context.  Is DELL COMPUTER the unity or is COMPUTER the unity.  Or is 
PRODUCTION the unity, or is SOCIAL FORMATION the unity.  I hope you get my 
drift.  Either unity is a slippery concept, or you must impose a premise on 
the unity 

to begin intellectual work. 



THE HIDDEN HISTORY OF 9-11, P. Zarembka, editor, Seven Stories, May 2008 

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