November 5, 2012


I wanted to continue blogging about meta because I feel that I am really starting to grasp it on a new level. In the course of my readings for my independent study I came upon a term that the authors Bohm and Pfister use in their paper "Antinomies of Environmental Risk Perception: Cognitive Structure and Evaluation." What they used as a vital part in communication for recognizing and resolving antinomies (antinomies being defined as two or more logically contradicting propositions within a theoretical system where each proposition is valid or true in it's own right) was the term Meta-Communication. As we were in the middle of discussing Mitchell's "Metapictures" I found it really relevant and actually looked up the term meta. What I learned is that in English we have taken this Greek suffix to mean "about something." Thus when we put it in from of pictures it is "pictures about pictures," just as Mitchell makes a point to say many times in his essay, and in my readings of Bohm and Pfister they too say the same thing about Meta-communication, calling it “communication about the process and content of communication itself.” 

With these ideas suddenly all our discussions on Mitchell finally became clear, what we were discussing was in a sense the essence of pictures; what they do, what they mean, and every way in which they function for every different viewpoint. The way this works with Meta-Communication, in the context of the environmental antinomies that were being discussed, is to help people recognize that there is or was an antimony that needs to be resolved. Meta gives the study in which you are doing a new depth and opens up the way in which you think and discuss, it is a wonderful term.

1 comment:

KatieA said...

You bring up really great points when tying metapictures with meta-communication. I also wrote my blog post on metapictures but did not think to look into the root words to find meaning there. Meta pictures is definitely pictures about pictures or as I think of it, pictures relating to and containing pictures. Meta-communication would clearly relate to metapictures in meaning based on the similar root word they both contain.

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