Child Psychology in Retrospect and Prospect: In Celebration of the 75th Anniversary of the Institute of Child Development

Child Psychology in Retrospect and Prospect: In Celebration of the 75th Anniversary of the Institute of Child Development

Child Psychology in Retrospect and Prospect: In Celebration of the 75th Anniversary of the Institute of Child Development

Child Psychology in Retrospect and Prospect: In Celebration of the 75th Anniversary of the Institute of Child Development

Synopsis

This 32nd volume of the Minnesota Symposium on Child Psychology celebrates the 75th anniversary of the University of Minnesota's Institute of Child Development. All eight essays are devoted to developmental science, its history, and current status. Taken together, the chapters in this book show how the history of science connects past and future, how it gives the individual investigator an identity and sense of purpose, how contemporary studies occur within larger traditions, and how institutions like the Institute of Child Development constitute cultural traditions of their own. Collectively, these essays show that the past explains a great deal-whether we want to know about the processes through which the child acquires symbolic thought or whether we want to know how and why, during the last century, a few enduring centers were established for the scientific study of children and adolescents. Reading these essays, one obtains a sense of how the past becomes evidence, how it forms models for the way we think, and how intellectual challenges arise.

Excerpt

Anniversaries suggest stock taking as well as celebration. Accordingly, when the Institute of Child Development, University of Minnesota, neared its 75th anniversary, the faculty wished to observe the event in two ways—by examining current research in developmental psychology in historical context, and by studying the history of the Institute itself. Included in this volume are eight essays based on presentations made at the 32nd Minnesota Symposium on Child Psychology held at the university on October 19–21, 2000, in observance of this Diamond Jubilee.

All of the essays in the book are devoted to developmental science, its history and current status. The editors deliberately sought diversity in these manuscripts. For example, one contains an assessment of new ideas concerning the manner in which development affects evolution rather than the reverse. In another manuscript, current work on the linkages between brain and behavior is assessed within an extended historical context. And so, too, the volume includes essays on the development of symbolic thought, the understanding of spoken language, and personality—each describing contemporary work within an analysis of the history of ideas leading to it.

The volume also contains two essays in which “history” figures some-what differently: One deals with the manner in which the child's development contributes to social historical change as well as the reverse. In this essay, readers are reminded clearly that the dialectic between ontogeny and the social-historical context must be a constant consideration in developmental science. Still another essay contains a penetrating analysis of the philosophical and ideological foundations of the contemporary field of child psychology as a whole. “History” thus comes alive in this volume in several guises: as the context in which changing ideologies shape scientific endeavor; as an accounting, through time, of ideas undergirding contemporary research; and as processes through which ontogeny contributes to both the origin of species and the origins of social change.

The remaining essay deals with institutional history, specifically the history of the Institute of Child Development. No such account has been published previously and this one was written to complement the other essays in the volume. As it happens, the Institute came into being as a result of major changes that occurred in the United States during the early . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.