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Cultural Psychology: A Once and Future Discipline

Cole, Michael

Editore: Belknap Press, 1996
ISBN 10: 067417951X / ISBN 13: 9780674179516
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Titolo: Cultural Psychology: A Once and Future ...

Casa editrice: Belknap Press

Data di pubblicazione: 1996

Legatura: Hardcover

Condizione libro: New


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Riassunto: Why do psychologists find it so difficult to keep culture in mind? Why, if we agree that culture is central to mental life, can't we make a central place for it in the study of mental life? This work takes up the odd dilemma of cultural psychology. The psychologist Michael Cole, known for his pioneering work in literacy, cognition and human development, offers a multifaceted account of what the field of cultural psychology is, what is has been, and what it can be. Cole first takes us back to a time when culture "was" accorded a place of honour in psychology. He describes what happened when the discipline was subsumed by natural science at the turn of the century and culture became a causal variable with mind as its effect - an approach that distorts both the culture-mind relation and the methods needed to study it. The alternative Cole puts forward treats culture instead as the special medium of human life, a medium saturated with artifacts, the residue of the experience of prior generations. Mediation through culture is the special characteristic of human thought, he contends, and he shows how this perspective fits with contemporary ideas in cognitive science, developmental psychology and anthropology. Cole also demonstrates the usefulness of this view by applying it to a variety of theoretical, methodological and practical issues in the study of human development. These include the relationship between nature and nurture, the process by which culture both enables and constrains development, the role of literacy and education in cognitive development, and the procedures for designing new forms of activity to promote children's development.

L'autore: Michael Cole is Professor of Communication and Psychology and Director of the Laboratory of Comparative Human Cognition at the University of California, San Diego.

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Indirizzo: Lewiston, NY, U.S.A.

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