Monday, November 12, 2007

The Internationallity of Sense

Hello dear chaps, it is my week to host the blog, so I have a question to pose for you:

Is sense perception international? How does the answer to this question affect the way in which we view (or perhaps how we should view) the world as a whole? Remeber to justify your answers :)

18 comments:

katrina337 said...

I don't think we base our senses off the same things, internationally. Actually, I couldn't really tell. But some cultures may be more feeling-based while others are more sight-based or hearing-based or whatever. But that's also a personal matter, so how would you actually define that as being international at all?
I mean, we view different cultures differently than they view their own culture because we focus on different things, so we absorb things differently. So we view the world with different lenses, which is a strong form of bias. Kind of.

JuliaC. said...

I agree with Katrina, I think that sense perception is a very personal thing, and though the culture your raised in might affect your perception of some things, I think it is, in the end a very personal thing.

J.Malone said...

How about a specific example?

Dani said...

Of course sense peception is international, all humans use it as a way of knowing. However, i believe that the way we interpret what we are perceiving can be different; much like how different people interpret what is and isnt art differently.
For example, when I lived in Asia, their national sport is archery. About five guys would stand 300 feet down a field and right next to the target. Many people in the U.S. would perceive an arrow being shot towards them as dangerous; in Bhutan, that was not the case (and this resulted in my dad taking care of a couple guys with arrows in their femurs).
Anyways, I think that the way we interpret our sense perception is all dependant on our experiances gowing up, and how were taught/influenced while being brought up.

Dani said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ZoeW said...

When i first saw this log I thought that it might be. For example, in America there is a lot of money spent on making thinsg look good (advertisements on tv use non-food things like glue for milk to make sure cereal they are showing isn't soggy on camera) including packaging of items etc. But then as I though of other cultures a similar thing happens with trying ta attract people by making something good so it appeals to their visual sense perception. I agree that sense perception is a very personal thing and I find it hard to group it by nations because that generalizes way too much.

ZoeW said...

To add on to what I said I believe that other nations use sense perception (duh) I am just confused whether certain senses dominate more in different countries.

Dani said...

I completely agree with Zoe...look at Hong Kong compared to Vegas. Advertising seems to be universal; the methods may be different but the aim is the same: the brightest, catchiest, most attntion-grabbing way to get a product out there.
Good call on that Zoe, thank you.
However, this is an area where language can be an issue. In Paris summer before last there was a poster in the subway of a college aged guy being held upside down by a shark (in parody of a guy holding the shark by the tail)...and it didnt make any sense to me. I think the slogan/message/tag line was mostly slang because it made no sense the way it was (and sadly i dont remember it otherwise i would post it to see other interpretations.)

Rick_Andrews_Director said...

To an extent, sense perception is universal. everyone seems to be using advertising as an example, but is an advertisement in itself universal? I have seen commercials from Germany, Sweden, Japan, and other various countries and sometimes I wonder how on earth the advertisement could be convincing. The advertisement does not want me to buy the product, it makes me want to buy it less. But, the product is most likely really popular in that country, why? Advertisements appeal to that specific society, a specific culture. It appeals to what that society/culture values, and we have been taught for years that different societies/cultures have different values.

Refferring to my group's Sense Perception in Psychology presentation, people are conditioned to act a certain way, and societies/cultures are no exception. An advertisement plays off of those conditions. With that in mind, I'd have to say that although sense perception is used by everyone and the intents might be the same (Ex: Make the person buy the product), the means of doing and the appeal to our senses is different.

Sierra Tamkun said...

However, to say that sense perception is a very personal thing and so you cannot discuss it in an international light in a way undermines our discussions in class. I agree that it is conditioned, like what Rick said. Yes, it is personal, but that does not mean that it is not greatly affected by the outside world. We are taught, through our exchanges and interactions with the society around us from birth to act and be a certain way, whether we are aware of it or not. So I'm asking you to touch on whether you believe that the instinctual qualities in sense perception override the cultural teachings? Some of you touched on this a bit, but I think it's unfair to say that it's too personal to touch on. Why would it override those cultural aspects? When does it not? Can we ever really know? How and why?

katrina337 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
katrina337 said...

My bad about the above.

I think if you look into 'survival of the fittest' the instinctual qualities of sense perception would almost always override cultural teachings, because you have nothing other than whatever you can bring in through your senses and your gut reaction to go on. I think in really structured environments where we feel really safe and don't feel threatened in any way that we tend to let go more of instinctual sense perception, or just to ignore it more, because we don't deem it necessary. I don't know if that answers your question more, Sierra, but I shall stop here for now.

Mr. Pseudonym said...

I don't think sense perception is international at all. In fact, I would be hard pressed to imagine it is even interpersonal. Take for example those blessed (cursed?) with synesthesia. It is unjustifiable to say that their idea of sense perception matches another person's. Even more specifically look at those who associate words with colors, or patterns. I can, quite simply, say that I do not see words as colors. The way that they interpret the senses is perpendicular to my own.
That is a smaller example too. Imagine an entire country that is taught from birth not to see something (this idea came to me from a novel I read). Through their lives they are taught that there is no such thing as a mirror, or nothing reflective. They are taught not to even pay notice such things, and because of that when introduced to a narcissistic country like the US&A they will be completely unable to deal with the shear number of reflective surfaces we have everywhere, because their minds will have adapted to no longer see such things.

Sierra Tamkun said...

Wow. That was very interesting, Wolf. We talked about in ToK the other day how we can be conditioned to not see things, that something can be put right in front of our faces, and if we have never seen it before, our brains will discount it and we actually won't see it. This reminds me of the movie Beetlejuice, where the ghosts try to scare the husband and wife away, but they don't see them. They had never seen ghosts before and did not believe in them, so they did not see them, even when they were right in front of their eyes.

Rebecca said...

I realize that sense percpetion is greatly impacted by culture, but I think that it can be universal at some degree. If it wasn't, then the world wouldn't have any accepted truths in regards to anything. Aren't there some concepts in science that are generally accepted througout the world? Take, for example, the fact that gravity exists. Obviously it's not going to be called the same thing in every country, but it is at least ackowledged. Even if a culture isn't developed enough to be have a technical term for it, everyone knows that humans don't float (without help) and that if you jump off a cliff, you'll die. Those are things we've learned through sense perception (You can see that if a person jumps up, they come right back down. If you do it, you can feel it, too). Obviously, we can only go so far with universally accepted truths because different cultures can disagree about almost anything depending on religious beliefs and values. However, I don't think that we should completely deny that they can exist in certain cases becuase there are instances in which our sense perception is generally telling us the same thing.

katrina337 said...

Sense perception is only one form of truth though. Humans not floating is found through experience (not sense perception), and dying if you jump off a cliff is also based on other's experience. I've never seen anyone jump off a cliff. I still know that if someone does they'll die (unless it's a short cliff that shouldn't be considered a cliff). I think a large part of universal truths is more instinct/intuition proven rather than sense perception.

Rebecca said...

Experience is gained through sense perception. Any information you gain from the outside world has to be gained by your sense perception. You may never have experienced falling off a cliff, but you've still become aware that it happens through your sense perception (You read, saw it, or were told it).

HTMet said...

sense perception is one of the few things that is international, it's something that doesn't require a different language (to an extent) and is common among almost all