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[Xmca-l] Re: Hegel's imagination - Piaget did read Hegel

Interesting, isn't it, that the one who actually read Hegel and apparently found Hegel inspiring (Piaget) was the one who thought conceptual schemas were built into our biology, while the one who never read Hegel (Vygotsky) really grasped Hegel's essential contribution, that concepts are socially constructed forms of activity.
*Andy Blunden*
On 10/12/2015 9:43 AM, Martin John Packer wrote:

The book does indeed mention some of Piaget's personal stories, but its goal seems to be to identify a hidden and even occult aim behind Piaget's entire body of work. For example, the author concludes that "There can be no doubt that he [Piaget] is a serious devotee of the bewitching magical arts, and that they are an important part of his professional strategy" (p. 264).

To me, it doesn't seem a very convincing analysis of the impact on Piaget of Hegel, or any other serious thinker.


On Dec 9, 2015, at 3:17 PM, Lplarry <lpscholar2@gmail.com> wrote:

Is this possibly not merely Piaget's  personal story of having a crisis or ecstasy at a point in his biography (an overwhelming experience) and some factor that gave sustenance at this time. This type of overwhelming experience generating an (attitude) or orientation and using (ideas) and (images) to make sense of the experience.
 From here complex models may be elaborated.
One example is William James in 1870 experiencing a deep psychic wound that projected him into his life work.
He had the courage to explore this event in his book (varieties of religious experience).
I sense many philosophers are working (out) these types of profound experience which they have undergone. Their theories are not neutral and call upon cultural historical (templates).

-----Original Message-----
From: "Martin John Packer" <mpacker@uniandes.edu.co>
Sent: ‎2015-‎12-‎09 11:40 AM
To: "eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity" <xmca-l@mailman.ucsd.edu>
Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: Hegel's imagination - Piaget did read Hegel

According to this, how shall I say?, interesting book, Piaget was not merely influenced by Hegel:

"Piaget... is completely committed to his metaphysical [Hegelian] doctrines, but is well aware that they are not acceptable to the academic community in their unadulterated form. Herculean efforts were made to maintain his views, even if undercover, while he presented a fraudulent view for general consumption. His boldest, most presumptuous deception was to present his metaphysical doctrine dressed up in scientific garb." (p. 6)

This is certainly a fresh interpretation of Piaget!


On Dec 9, 2015, at 3:29 AM, Rauno Huttunen <rakahu@utu.fi> wrote:


There are biographical documents that proof that Piaget indeed read Hegel. Following sitation is from Webster R. Callaway´s book Jean Piaget: A Most Outrageous Deception, p. 4:

"Piaget´s autobiography shows that he became enchanted with Hegel´s Absolute as an adolescent and proceeded immediately to build his entire philosophy and essentially all his psychology around Him. Literally everthing could be explained by iyts relationship to Him. He 'recalled one evening of profound revelation'. 'The Identification of God with life was an idea that stirred me almost to ecstacy because it enabled me to see in biology the explanation of all things and the mind itself' (Piaget, 1976b, 119)."

I read this fragment from Google Books, so I don't  know what is reference Piaget 1976b. But if this sitation is valid, it shows that Piaget was really enchanted byt Hegel's idea mystic related to the notion of Absolut.


Rauno Huttunen
University of Turku

Lähettäjä: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu [xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu] käyttäjän Andy Blunden [ablunden@mira.net] puolesta
Lähetetty: 9. joulukuuta 2015 1:08
Vastaanottaja: xmca-l@mailman.ucsd.edu
Aihe: [Xmca-l] Re: Hegel's imagination

I have a recollection of discussions in the late 70s/early
80s where a number of Marxists (whose knowledge of Hegel was
derivative of Engels in any case) fervently argued that
Piaget was "compatible" with Marxism and that he was an
"unconscious" dialectician. I am inclined to believe that
Piaget never read Hegel, as you say Arthur, but a lot of
people perceived a likeness. In my own reading of Piaget,
which is extremely limited - but I did read his Genetic
Epistemology, for example - is that he has not read Hegel or
appropriated anything from him. But like Kuhn, the nature of
the ideas he introduced made many people think of Hegel -
the concern with sophisticated logic, transformational
change between stages, for example.

But quite apart from general resemblances with how change
and development is conceived, the passage I sent the link to
was from the Subjective Spirit. This is a work which has
been very little discussed outside of "professional" Hegel
scholarship until very recent times. If Piaget read Hegel
that would not suggest that he knew anything about Hegel's
ideas about Imagination.

*Andy Blunden*
On 9/12/2015 8:48 AM, Bakker, A. (Arthur) wrote:
Andy, Peter,

I  just read an interesting book by Kitchener (1986) on Piaget:

Kitchener, R. F. (1986). Piaget's theory of knowledge: Genetic epistemology & scientific reason. Yale University Press.

There is a passage on dialectical thinking in Piaget's work, and there is an Hegelian influence, but Kitchener claims that Piaget never read Hegel.
I brought the book back to the library, so I cannot check the page numbers (cannot find it in google books).
However in the Cambridge Companion to Piaget, Hegel is mentioned a few times (e.g. p. 163 ff by Campbell) so



Dr Arthur Bakker | Freudenthal Institute | Faculty of Science and Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences| Utrecht University | Princetonplein 5, kamer 465 |PO Box  85170, 3508 AD Utrecht | tel. 030 253 5641 | a.bakker4@uu.nl | sampling (ESM 2015), inquiry (ZDM 2015). scaffolding (ZDM 2015)

From: xmca-l-bounces+a.bakker4=uu.nl@mailman.ucsd.edu [xmca-l-bounces+a.bakker4=uu.nl@mailman.ucsd.edu] on behalf of Peter Feigenbaum [Staff] [pfeigenbaum@fordham.edu]
Sent: Tuesday, December 08, 2015 4:36 PM
To: ablunden@mira.net; eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: Hegel's imagination


No, it's merely an hypothesis--although I must admit I never bothered to
check whether Piaget ever made any direct references to Hegel. The basis
for my hypothesis are several of Piaget's earliest essays in The Essential
Piaget (Howard Gruber & Jacques Vonèche, Eds.), which are all about *The
Idea*. Those essays are what led me (years ago) to infer that he was
fascinated with Hegel. Piaget's later writings, which weave dialectical
logic into his theory of development, only added further weight to that

Apparently, I'm not the only one to see an affinity between Piaget and
Hegel: Piaget's dialectical approach to development has been examined
by several philosophers, such as James Lawler and Marx Wartofsky. The
general critique of Piaget's application of dialectical logic by these
authors is that it doesn't stick closely enough to Hegel's formulation,
leading Piaget into inconsistencies.


On Tue, Dec 8, 2015 at 9:52 AM, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net> wrote:

Do you have any evidence that Piaget studied Hegel?
*Andy Blunden*
On 9/12/2015 1:30 AM, Peter Feigenbaum [Staff] wrote:


What an amazing excerpt!  From this one passage alone I can see the
strong influence that Hegel had upon Piaget.

Thanks for bringing this section of The Subjective Spirit to attention.
It's chock-full of interesting thoughts.


On Mon, Dec 7, 2015 at 11:53 PM, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net <mailto:
ablunden@mira.net>> wrote:

    *Andy Blunden*
    On 8/12/2015 3:47 PM, Annalisa Aguilar wrote:

        Hi Andy,

        Would you post a link reference to texts where
        Hegel discusses imagination?



Peter Feigenbaum, Ph.D.
Office of Institutional Research <
Fordham University
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Bronx, NY 10458

Phone: (718) 817-2243
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email: pfeigenbaum@fordham.edu <mailto:pfeigenbaum@fordham.edu>

Peter Feigenbaum, Ph.D.
Office of Institutional Research
Fordham University
Thebaud Hall-202
Bronx, NY 10458

Phone: (718) 817-2243
Fax: (718) 817-3817
email: pfeigenbaum@fordham.edu