[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

[Xmca-l] Re: The ideal head




Sent from my BlackBerry 10 smartphone.
From: Greg Thompson
Sent: Sunday, August 10, 2014 8:41 PM
To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
Reply To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
Cc: Benjamin Smith
Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: The ideal head


Martin (and others),

I would love to hear another exposition of the 6 yr and 12 yr crises. So if
you could put together a couple sentences of what you were trying to
articulate, that would be much appreciated.

And as a provocation, I'll throw my two cents into the ring (aren't mixed
metaphors wonderful? Word-play as double stimulation?).

My thinking is greatly influenced by John Lucy's work (but please note that
this is my interpretation of his work!). John is quite influenced by
Vygotsky but he is an unorthodox Vygotskian and departs in many ways from
how many read Vygotsky, but he hews very closely to the importance of
language developments leading other developments (and some would call him
unorthodox for that reason).

So here goes. The crisis at 6 years (John puts it at 7-9 years, a broader
range b.c. let's face it, development isn't even across large populations)
is a transformative crisis in which the child comes to see the world in an
entirely new way. The child grasps that there is a whole other world out
there that is transposed on top of the actual world that of bodies and
houses and trees and things, and they realize that this social world is
highly consequential. The first part of this involves the development of an
ability to understand that things can be other than they are. At the most
basic level, this involves the ability to understand that people don't
always speak literally. Sometimes they can say things in ways that are
opposite to the words that are coming out of their mouths. That's an
important first step to understanding that there is a world behind the
words that are uttered. Second is being able to understand that these
non-literal meanings have consequences. Being able to understand the true
meanings behind the words is a really impressive feat (we humans can be
rather obtuse beings). These developments throw the child into a world that
is totally foreign to them - a bit like a two dimensional being suddenly
finding themselves in three dimensions (cf. the movie Flatland). The child
must learn to make their way in this land, and to begin to navigate through
these three dimensional social worlds.

As for the 12 year transformation, the essential idea is that the child at
this age begins to realize not just that there is this three dimensional
social space, but also that they can position themselves with respect to
that space. I think of this as the development of "voice" (Bakhtin) - in
which the child begins to gain the ability to play with their presentations
of self so as to manage their voice. Holden Caulfield is the hero of this
crisis - a boy who is fixated on the possibility of people not being their
"real" selves. Authenticity becomes a central theme of this crisis, and
this is further developed in themes of being true to oneself (e.g.,
Hamlet).

Anyway, that is a poor stab at trying to articulate another explanation of
the 6 yr and 12 yr crisis. But I mostly offer it as a way of provoking
others to give their explanations.

-greg



On Sun, Aug 10, 2014 at 5:52 PM, Martin John Packer <mpacker@uniandes.edu.co
> wrote:

> Did I drop the thread of this topic? Or did things get resolved? I looked
> to see if I might send some writing I've been working on that summarizes
> LSV's account of stages, but it's way too rough.
>
> Martin
>
> On Aug 10, 2014, at 6:38 PM, Huw Lloyd <huw.softdesigns@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > On 30 July 2014 18:30, Greg Thompson <greg.a.thompson@gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> >> Martin,
> >> Vygotsky's Problem of Age is a difficult essay. I wonder if you could
> say a
> >> bit more about the crisis at 6 (7,8?) years and the one at 12 years? The
> >> others are fairly self explanatory but those two are a bit more
> >> complicated. Among other things, it isn't clear what is different about
> the
> >> crisis at 2.5 and the crisis at 6.
> >> -greg
> >>
> >>
> > Greg
> >
> > See Leontyev's paper, The Theory of the Development of the Child's Psyche
> > in The Development of Mind: Selected Works of A. N. Leontyev (pp.
> 361-362)
> >
> > https://www.marxists.org/archive/leontev/works/development-mind.pdf
> >
> > Best,
> > Huw
> >
> >
> >
> >>
> >> On Wed, Jul 30, 2014 at 6:44 AM, Martin John Packer <
> >> mpacker@uniandes.edu.co
> >>> wrote:
> >>
> >>> Though in other texts he wrote of adolescence as such a time of crisis
> >>> that the whole stage should be considered a transition. In the lectures
> >> on
> >>> child development Vygotsky describes the following crises:
> >>>
> >>> Birth: the child is differentiated physically
> >>> 1 year: the child is differentiated biologically
> >>> 2.5 years: the child is differentiated psychologically
> >>> 6 years: inside & outside of self are differentiated
> >>> 12 years: actual & possible selves are differentiated
> >>>
> >>> Martin
> >>>
> >>> On Jul 28, 2014, at 6:36 PM, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net> wrote:
> >>>
> >>>> Francis, most of the crises which Vygotsky mentions in
> >>>> http://www.marxists.org/archive/vygotsky/works/1934/problem-age.htm
> >>>> are associated with childhood before school. (It is an unfinished
> >> work).
> >>>> Andy
> >>>>
> >> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> >>>> *Andy Blunden*
> >>>> http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>> FRANCIS J. SULLIVAN wrote:
> >>>>> ...
> >>>>>
> >>>>> In any case, I wonder if Vygotsky considered whether schooling itself
> >>> might
> >>>>> be responsible, at least partly, for the child's apparent alienation
> >>> from
> >>>>> schooling at these moments.
> >>>>>
> >>>>> Francis J. Sullivan, Ph.D.
> >>>>>
> >>>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>
> >>
> >> --
> >> Gregory A. Thompson, Ph.D.
> >> Assistant Professor
> >> Department of Anthropology
> >> 883 Spencer W. Kimball Tower
> >> Brigham Young University
> >> Provo, UT 84602
> >> http://byu.academia.edu/GregoryThompson
> >>
>
>
>


--
Gregory A. Thompson, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Anthropology
882 Spencer W. Kimball Tower
Brigham Young University
Provo, UT 84602
http://byu.academia.edu/GregoryThompson