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[Xmca-l] Re: Leontyev's activities
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- Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: Leontyev's activities
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- Date: Fri, 09 Aug 2013 11:41:08 +1000
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Huw, I think we have to widen the scope of the subject matter beyond
child development here to appreciate the extent of the concept of "an
activity." Children, after all, grow into a society (community, nation
state, world market) of adults, and "activities" are the units for
understanding the dynamics (development) of that adult life-world. In
that context, I think "leading activity" is a concept which needs
qualification. A mature adult is always committed to a number of
projects, in different ways; some side-by-side, some "nested" and some
in conflict. This was Vasilyuk's insight I think. Personal development
of the adult is tied up with how the different projects to which one is
committed in one's life conflict with or reinforce one another, or come
up against objective barriers or fail to fulfill themself for a person.
I don't know that Leontyev looked into those "very complex cross-links."
For that I turn to Vasilyuk's 1984 book (not his current writing!).
Huw Lloyd wrote:
Thanks for these. They're interesting but I don't think they quite
answer the question about operational definitions -- i.e. the
experimental paradigms used to establish and measure the unit.
On p. 364 Leontiev elaborates on an example with a student, in which
he states that psychological testing needs to be done in order to find
out what the current activity is for the subject.
But this does not really bring any bearing onto "the very complex
cross-links" (1977) between the individual and society.
I am guessing that he uses leading activity as the means for setting
the scope of societal practices for revealing the formation of new
I am partially interested in this for observing how the object is
demonstrated objectively, and the relation of complex motives (e.g.
doing work in an ethical way) to notions of a "single basis of