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{{SocPsy}}
 
{{SocPsy}}
'''Cultural-historical psychology''' (''the school of Vygotsky'') - a trend in psychological research founded by [[Lev Vygotsky]] in the end of the 1920s and developed by his students and followers in Eastern Europe and worldwide.
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'''Cultural-historical psychology''' (also called ''the school of Vygotsky'', ''sociocultural psychology'', ''socio-historical psychology'', ''[[activity theory]]'', ''cultural psychology'', ''cultural historical activity theory'', and ''[[social development theory]]'') is a psychological theory formed by [[Lev Vygotsky]] in the late 1920s, and further developed by his students and followers in Eastern Europe and worldwide. This theory focuses on how aspects of culture, such as values, beliefs, customs and skills, are transmitted from one generation to the next.<ref> Berk, L.E. (2012). "Infants and children: Prenatal through middle childhood". Boston, MA: Pearson</ref> According to Vygotsky, social interaction, especially involvement with knowledgeable community or family members, helps children to acquire the thought processes and behaviours specific to their culture or society. The changes or growth that children experience as a result of these interactions differs greatly between cultures; this variance allows children to become competent in tasks important or necessary in their particular society.<ref> Berk, L.E. (2012). "Infants and children: Prenatal through middle childhood". Boston, MA: Pearson</ref>
   
Cultural-historical psychology emerged as a response to [[Cartesian dualism]] between mind and body in psychology of that time as a deliberate attempt to establish a new paradigm in psychological resarch that would overcome the narrow objectivism of [[behaviourism]] and [[subjectivism]] of [[Introspection|introspective psychology]] of [[Wundt]], [[William James|James]], and others.
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== Emergence of the school ==
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Cultural-historical psychology emerged in response to [[Dualism (philosophy of mind)|Cartesian dualism]] as a deliberate attempt to establish a new paradigm in psychological research that would overcome the narrow objectivism of [[behaviorism]] ([[John B. Watson]]) and [[subjectivism]] of the [[Introspection|introspective psychology]] of [[Wilhelm Wundt|Wundt]], [[William James|James]], and others. Furthermore, it emerged just when the Silver Age, or Renaissance, of the Russian culture was in decline. It focuses on human development for making genetic claims regarding the function of the mind during activity. These claims could be part of, or a basis for, a return to the unity of [[human science]]s.
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Another major characteristic of cultural-historical psychology was its integration of various approaches and methods used to consolidate knowledge about humanity.<ref> Wertsh, James, V., Rio, Pablo and Alvarez, Amelia. ''Sociocultural Studies of Mind'' (1995)</ref>
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== Theoretical content ==
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Vygotsky and his associates [[postulate]] a non-adaptive character and the mechanisms of ''higher psychical (mental) functional'' development. The members of Vygotsky's school believed that the main goal of psychological inquiry was an objective study of human [[consciousness]], and assigned the role of [[cultural mediation]] and cultural mediators as [[word]], [[Sign (semiotics)|sign]] (Vygotsky), [[symbol]], and [[Mythology|myth]] (Losev, V. Zinchenko) in the development of higher psychological functions, [[Personality development|development of personality]] and [[Phenomenology (philosophy)|phenomenology]].
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Human beings who are different in terms of cultural beliefs are also different from each other psychologically.<ref>Heine, S.J.(2008). Cultural psychology p.2.</ref>
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A basic distinguishing feature of cultural-historical psychology is that
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{{Block quote
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|the species-specific characteristic of human beings is their need and ability to inhabit an environment transformed by the activity of prior members of their species. Such transformations and the mechanism of the transfer of these transformations from one generation to the next are the result of the ability/proclivity of human beings to create and use artifacts - aspects of the material world that are taken up into human action as modes of coordinating with the physical and social environment.
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|x|x|M. Cole
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|<ref name="Cole in Wertsch">{{cite book|last=Cole|first=M.|title=Sociocultural studies of mind|year=1995|publisher=Harvard University Press|location=Cambridge, MA|page=190|editor=Jim Wertsch et al.,|chapter=Socio-cultural historical psychology}} </ref> }}
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In this way, research has been done into the effects of literacy<ref>Cole, M. & Scribner, Sylvia. (1981). ''The Psychology of Literacy''. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.</ref> and mathematics<ref>Saxe, G. (1990) ''Culture and cognitive development : studies in mathematical understanding''. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum Press.</ref> outside of traditional schooling to understand how cognition develops embedded in a given place and time.
   
 
Vygotsky and his associates postulate in principle non-adaptive character and the mechanisms of ''higher psychical'' (mental) ''functions'' development. Defining the main goal of psychological inquiry as an objective study of human [[consciousness]], the members of Vygotsky's school investigate the role of [[cultural mediation]] and such [[cultural mediator]]s as [[word]], [[sign]] (Vygotsky), [[symbol]], [[myth]] (Losev, V. Zinchenko) in the development of human [[higher psychical functions]], development of [[personality]] and its "top-most' [[phenomenology]].
 
Vygotsky and his associates postulate in principle non-adaptive character and the mechanisms of ''higher psychical'' (mental) ''functions'' development. Defining the main goal of psychological inquiry as an objective study of human [[consciousness]], the members of Vygotsky's school investigate the role of [[cultural mediation]] and such [[cultural mediator]]s as [[word]], [[sign]] (Vygotsky), [[symbol]], [[myth]] (Losev, V. Zinchenko) in the development of human [[higher psychical functions]], development of [[personality]] and its "top-most' [[phenomenology]].
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== See also ==
 
== See also ==
* [[Word]]
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* [[Constructivism (learning theory)]]
* [[Sign]]
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* [[Critical psychology]]
* [[Symbol]]
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* [[Cultural mediation]]
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* [[Laboratory of Comparative Human Cognition (LCHC)]]
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* [[Leading activity]]
 
* [[Myth]]
 
* [[Myth]]
 
* [[Prayer]]
 
* [[Prayer]]
* [[Cultural mediation]]
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* [[Sign]]
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* [[Social development theory]]
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* [[Symbol]]
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* [[Word]]
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* [[Zone of proximal development]]
   
 
== External resources ==
 
== External resources ==
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* [http://marxists.org/archive/luria/index.htm ''A.R Luria Archive''] at marxists.org
 
* [http://marxists.org/archive/luria/index.htm ''A.R Luria Archive''] at marxists.org
   
{{psych-stub}}
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[[Category:Critical psychology]]
 
[[Category:Psychological theories]]
 
 
[[Category:Educational psychology]]
 
[[Category:Educational psychology]]
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[[Category:Psychological theories]]
 
[[Category:Vygotsky]]
 
[[Category:Vygotsky]]
   

Revision as of 19:45, September 18, 2013

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Cultural-historical psychology (also called the school of Vygotsky, sociocultural psychology, socio-historical psychology, activity theory, cultural psychology, cultural historical activity theory, and social development theory) is a psychological theory formed by Lev Vygotsky in the late 1920s, and further developed by his students and followers in Eastern Europe and worldwide. This theory focuses on how aspects of culture, such as values, beliefs, customs and skills, are transmitted from one generation to the next.[1] According to Vygotsky, social interaction, especially involvement with knowledgeable community or family members, helps children to acquire the thought processes and behaviours specific to their culture or society. The changes or growth that children experience as a result of these interactions differs greatly between cultures; this variance allows children to become competent in tasks important or necessary in their particular society.[2]

Emergence of the school

Cultural-historical psychology emerged in response to Cartesian dualism as a deliberate attempt to establish a new paradigm in psychological research that would overcome the narrow objectivism of behaviorism (John B. Watson) and subjectivism of the introspective psychology of Wundt, James, and others. Furthermore, it emerged just when the Silver Age, or Renaissance, of the Russian culture was in decline. It focuses on human development for making genetic claims regarding the function of the mind during activity. These claims could be part of, or a basis for, a return to the unity of human sciences.

Another major characteristic of cultural-historical psychology was its integration of various approaches and methods used to consolidate knowledge about humanity.[3]

Theoretical content

Vygotsky and his associates postulate a non-adaptive character and the mechanisms of higher psychical (mental) functional development. The members of Vygotsky's school believed that the main goal of psychological inquiry was an objective study of human consciousness, and assigned the role of cultural mediation and cultural mediators as word, sign (Vygotsky), symbol, and myth (Losev, V. Zinchenko) in the development of higher psychological functions, development of personality and phenomenology.

Human beings who are different in terms of cultural beliefs are also different from each other psychologically.[4]

A basic distinguishing feature of cultural-historical psychology is that

the species-specific characteristic of human beings is their need and ability to inhabit an environment transformed by the activity of prior members of their species. Such transformations and the mechanism of the transfer of these transformations from one generation to the next are the result of the ability/proclivity of human beings to create and use artifacts - aspects of the material world that are taken up into human action as modes of coordinating with the physical and social environment.

—M. Cole , [5]

In this way, research has been done into the effects of literacy[6] and mathematics[7] outside of traditional schooling to understand how cognition develops embedded in a given place and time.

Vygotsky and his associates postulate in principle non-adaptive character and the mechanisms of higher psychical (mental) functions development. Defining the main goal of psychological inquiry as an objective study of human consciousness, the members of Vygotsky's school investigate the role of cultural mediation and such cultural mediators as word, sign (Vygotsky), symbol, myth (Losev, V. Zinchenko) in the development of human higher psychical functions, development of personality and its "top-most' phenomenology.

Some of Vygotsky´s students who took up and developed his approach to psychology include Aleksey Leontyev (sometimes also spelled A.N. Leontev) and A.R. Luria in the Soviet Union, and Klaus Holzkamp in Germany. Holzkamp developed his own approach to cultural-historical psychology which he termed "critical psychology" mainly based on Leontev´s work, also making use of Merleau-Ponty´s Phenomenology[8]

See also

External resources

de:Kulturhistorische Schule
fi:Kulttuurihistoriallinen psykologia
ru:Культурно-историческая психология
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