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[Xmca-l] Re: Followup on "If you want to under something, try to change it"



Susan Jurow and I just used this quote for our new paper   Good timing 

Sent from my iPhone

> On Jun 10, 2015, at 3:12 PM, mike cole <mcole@ucsd.edu> wrote:
> 
> Poking along with this issue I have arrived at Urie Bronfenbrenner's 1979
> volume on the ecology of human development.
> There, among other things, I found a passage where he links this idea to
> the notion of formative, or as he translates it here,
> a transformative, experiment that he takes from......
> 
> This foreshortened theoretical  perspective [of American psychology-mc]  was
> first brought to my attention by Professor A. N. Leontiev of the University of
> Moscow. At the time, more than a decade ago, I was an exchange scientist at
> the Institute of Psychology there. We had been discussing differences in the
> assumptions underlying research on human development in the Soviet Union and
> in the United States. In summing up his views, Professor Leontiev offered
> the following judgment: "It seems to me that American researchers are
> constantly seeking to explain how the child came to be what he is; we in the
> U.S.S.R. are striving to discover not how the child came to be what he is,
> but how he can become what he not yet is."
> 
> 
> 
> Leontiev's statement is of course reminiscent of Dearborn's** in­junction ("
> If you want  to understand  something, try to change it."), but it goes much
> further; indeed, in Leontiev's view, it is  revolutionary in its
> implications. Soviet psychologists often speak of what they call the
> "transforming experiment." By this they mean an experiment   that  radically
> restructures   the  environment,   producing a new configuration that
> activates previously unrealized behavioral potentials of the subject.
> (1979, p. 41)
> 
> 
> For them what's interested.
> 
> mike
> 
> 
> (**Dearborn was one of UB's psych professors - as noted on xmca, this
> notion is widely attributed to Kurt Lewin U.B acknowledged as a major
> influence on his work)
> 
> -- 
> 
> All there is to thinking is seeing something noticeable which makes
> you see something you weren't noticing which makes you see something
> that isn't even visible. N. McLean, *A River Runs Through it*