[From Fred Nickols, 951111, 0805 EastCoastTime]

A couple of comments about "animism" puzzle me.

First, in Rick Marken (951110.1330), responding to Chris Cherpas
(951110.0921 PT) --

   Chris: > PCT-ers: what's the problem with saying that "behavior
              > controls the environment AND the environment controls
              > behavior?"

   Rick: > Because there is no evidence of the latter; the idea that the
             > inanimate environment controls at all is called "animism".

Later, in Rick Marken (951110.2000) responding to Chris Cherpas
(951110.1551 PT) --

   Chris: > I can get people to do lots of things by what I do, and for
             > them, I'm the environment. You don't deny this, do you?
             > Am I inanimate?

   Rick: > No. You are part of the animate environment. You DO
             > control.

             > "Animism" is attributing to inanimate objects (like shocks
             > and food pellets) the abilities of animate objects (like
             > -- such as the ability to control.

Is the use of "animism" above a special, technical definition of that term
peculiar to PCT? Animism is customarily and widely taken to mean
a belief that natural objects and phenomena have souls.

Moreover, attributing human characteristics or qualities to non-human
entities (e.g., corporations, rocks, and computer programs) is commonly
known as "anthropomorphizing."

Am I confused or what? Just wondering (and maybe trying to validate
some of the referents that control my use of the English language).


Fred Nickols