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Re: [xmca] Interpreting Leontiev: functionalism and Anglo Finnish Insufficiences

The way you have explained Vasilyuk's ideas makes them very attractive for me. I would certainly be interested in following up these ideas. All that stuff around exploring crisis situations sounds very fruitful to me. On the other hand, even before I came to CHAT I felt that "values" was a very derivative concept, and in general it seems to be treated as a second order concept in CHAT. Values are real enough, and I can see that they are explanatory up to a point. But I wouldn't take them as basic.

But thanks for that Vasilyuk stuff!!


christine schweighart wrote:
On appropriating motive Perhaps bringing in Fyodor Vasilyuk's ' The Psychology of Experiencing . An Analysis of how critical situations are dealt with' 1984/88 would be relevant. The theme goes back to the earlier thread of 'parallel' subjectivity of Gonzalez Rey from social relations , Vasilyuk sees a relation between motive and 'values' : " In the first place, by the fact that values in themselves have no stimulating energy and force and therefore are incapable of directly compelling motives and behaviour to obey them. A value does, on the other hand, have the power to produce emotions, for instance if a choice already made is clearly in conflict with it. This means that the value must be taken ( in the terms of the psychological theory of activity) to be in the same category as motive, for emotions relate to separate activities, reflecting the course of their realisation of various motives..(.ref.) ..... It is possible to suppose that in the course of individual development values undergo a definite evolution, changing not only in content but in motivational status as well, in the place they occupy and the role they play in the structure of life activity' p139 Vasilyuk's interest in a critical-situation threshold and dealing with them is to be seen as an 'individual's investigation of the situation (which is ) not cognitive in intent, nor is it intellectual in method, it is trying to find answers not to universal questions but to questions of vital interest to the individual. It is not rational cognition, but probing of the internal and external bounds of possibility, a testing out of the world and of the self.' He refers to a coming up against a reality 'such as never was' always at a border line , which require creativity and can become growing points. In the book Vasilyuk explores 'frustration' suggests a 'typology of frustration behaviours'. then explores Conflict and Crisis, defence mechanisms. Related to ‘experiencing ‘ hedonist’ ‘realistic’ ‘value’ and ‘creative’ l experiencing. I was interested that he also tried to situate 'energy' into his schema. In Chapter 3 he considers these dynamics in ‘cultural-historical determination of experiencing – he goes on to explore archetypes and schemas or collective concepts for ‘depth of perspective of meaning’ – These 'schematisms of consciousness' / archetypes and he mentions a few examples of this kind - 'are able to serve as a form through which an individual makes sense of, or re-interprets, the events and circumstances of life, and are thus a culturally prescribed form for individual experiencing' one which he sharply differentiates from intellectual acquisition of knowledge, entering into 'not by mind alone but involves the whole of life', or an 'attuning' when 'one has attained a state of consciousness 'appropriate to the internal order of the schematism concerned'...'attuned ??. I hadn't read this mentioned much before I found my way to this book, seems very relevant to this discussion, though too much for me to take on at once. The focus that makes it interesting is that Vasilyuk is trying ( at that time ) to look at ‘a life as a whole’, biography and critical situations. And struggles of realizing integrity.

*Andy Blunden*
Joint Editor MCA: http://www.tandfonline.com/toc/hmca20/18/1
Home Page: http://home.mira.net/~andy/
Book: http://www.brill.nl/default.aspx?partid=227&pid=34857

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