Studies on the History of Behavior: Ape, Primitive, and Child

Studies on the History of Behavior: Ape, Primitive, and Child

Studies on the History of Behavior: Ape, Primitive, and Child

Studies on the History of Behavior: Ape, Primitive, and Child

Synopsis

The surge of contemporary interest in Vygotsky's contribution to child psychology has focused largely on his developmental method and his claim that higher psychological functions in the individual emerge out of social processes, that is, his notion of the "zone of proximal development." Insufficient attention has been given to his claim that human social and psychological processes are shaped by cultural tools or mediational means. This book is one of the most important documents for understanding this claim.

Making a timely appearance, this volume speaks directly to the present crisis in education and the nature/nurture debate in psychology. It provides a greater understanding of an interdisciplinarian approach to the education of normal and exceptional children, the role of literacy in psychological development, the historical and cultural evolution of behavior, and other important issues in cognitive psychology, neurobiology, and cultural and social anthropology.

Excerpt

Studies on the History of Behavior: Ape, Primitive, and Child was first published in 1930 and has not since then appeared again in Russian for reasons discussed in the introduction to this book. The renewed interest in the work of both L.S. Vygotsky and A.P. Luria both in Russia and in the West makes the appearance of this book a timely contribution to scholars in many fields: psychology, education, psycholinguistics, and cultural anthropology.

As in the case for many of his works, Vygotsky here uses many obscure references that were not identified. We have, to the best of our knowledge, supplied those missing references for chapter 1 and chapter 2 to which Vygotsky himself supplied none. A.R. Luria contributed the references and footnotes to chapter 3, unless otherwise indicated.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

We wish to express our gratitude and thanks to those many people who helped us research this missing information. In particular, Peeter Tulviste (Psychology Department, Tartu University, Estonia), James V. Wertsch (Psychology Department, Clark University), Robert LeVine (Graduate School of Education, Harvard University), Lena Moskovichyute (Boston University, School of Medicine, Behavior Neurology), Bencie Woll (Department of Education, Bristol University, England), Victor Shnirelman (Institute of Ethnology and Anthropology, Moscow), Alex Kozulin Boston School of Medicine), Mary Towle (Russian Research Center, Harvard University . . .

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