The Growth of Logical Thinking from Childhood to Adolescence

The Growth of Logical Thinking from Childhood to Adolescence

The Growth of Logical Thinking from Childhood to Adolescence

The Growth of Logical Thinking from Childhood to Adolescence

Excerpt

Some of those who are drawn by the psychological title to choose this book from the display shelf may be tempted to put it down when they discover how many pages are filled with v's and ⊃'s or p's and q's. But their interest is not misplaced, for this is not a work on logic. It is a book which should be relevant both to the experimental psychologist interested in cognition and to the clinical psychologist or psychiatrist who deals with children or adolescents and who would like to know more about ego development. Logic does appear, both in that it is the more strictly logical aspects of the child's and the adolescent's thinking which make up the subject matter of the book and in that logical notation is used to provide a structural model of their thought processes. But this, we think, is not sufficient reason for putting it down, even for the person whose traumatic experiences with high-school mathematics have erected barriers around that part of the cognitive field labeled "abstract symbolism."

Nevertheless, the book poses a number of problems for the reader who is not familiar with the authors' methods and basic assumptions and who has no formal training in logic. On the one hand, it is a new installment in a long series of empirical works on the child's mental processes: it goes one step more up the genetic scale and covers the transition to adolescence. But in addition --

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