Open peer commentary on the article “Second-Order Cybernetics as a Fundamental Revolution in Science” by Stuart A. Umpleby. Upshot: Connecting Umpleby’s article with Piaget and García’s genetic epistemology, I will argue that the revolution the former discerns is more comprehensive. Additionally, since the latter differ from cybernetic and radical traditions in their philosophical assumptions about society and its conditioning on knowledge, I will suggest that these assumptions must be considered to explain each constructivist program’s achievements and challenges.
Open peer commentary on the article “Subsystem Formation Driven by Double Contingency” by Bernd Porr & Paolo Di Prodi. Upshot: I acknowledge the value of Porr & Di Prodi’s piece for simulating Luhmann’s key process of subsystem formation and exploring how the concepts of “differentiation” and “binary code” relate to their model.
Among the most outstanding discoveries of the last century is one that is not quite as momentous as the theory of relativity or cybernetics. It may even still be enigmatic. It has no one single author, it is not expressed in a single formula, conception, or invention. Nonetheless it is worth all the others combined.
Playing soccer in public parks, participating in parades, or marching in religious processions are public performances that express membership in a political community. When these practices are performed by noncitizens, they highlight how the public space—in its physical and symbolic character—is not a space exclusive to members of the political community. Rather, public space is a terrain subject to contestation. In this article, I explore the ways Mexican migrants in New York City use and appropriate public spaces and in doing (...) so expand the boundaries of the political community. I argue that by gaining access to public spaces, appropriating them, and then transforming them, noncitizens claim recognition as members of the political community and thus unsettle its boundaries. (shrink)