Re: [xmca] Two books of possible interest

From: Martin Packer (
Date: Tue Oct 18 2005 - 07:54:53 PDT

I am reading the new edition of Luria's autobiography, and finding it very
interesting. The organization of the book makes possible (even demands)
entry in a variety of ways, so while I'm only half way through Luria's
original text I've read the original (1979) introduction and epilogue by
Mike, and the new section 'Luria in Retrospect' by Mike and Karl Levitin,
and I've begun to watch the interviews on the DVD. The new material adds
immeasurably to our picture of Luria's life and work.

Something clicked for me while listening to the interview with Mike (audio
only, accompanied by memorable images from the Luria family photo album, it
seems), when he pointed out that while the changing political winds in the
USSR forced Luria to change jobs, even careers, many times, his vision of an
intellectual project was broad enough to enable him to unify all his work. I
find myself wondering if this was how he survived. Without this grand
scientific project, which he took over from Vygotsky, he would surely have
been broken by the state's brutality. He was able to achieve continuity,
safety, identity, on an intellectual plane. We are faced with the irony that
a man who believed that each of us must be understood in relation to our
culture needed to erase the role of his own culture from his own
autobiography, in order to live through its contradictions.


On 10/8/05 2:26 PM, "Mike Cole" <> wrote:

> While I was at ISCAR a new version/edition of the autobiography of Alexander
> Luria was published. It
> is a re-issue of the autobiography that appeared in 1979 that was censored
> as a result of Soviet
> policies. In this re-issue, Karl Levitin (a science writer whose book, *One
> is not born a personality*
> you may know) and I include a new introduction and a new afterward that
> provide information about
> the social context and personal position of Alexander Romanovich that could
> not be published at the time.
> The book contains a DVD that features interviews with Jerry Bruner, Oliver
> Sachs, Volodya Zinchenko,
> Peter Tulviste and others. Here is the Erlbaum info on the book
> (paper)*<
> 9-1>
> Subtitle: A Dialogue With the Making of Mind
> Author: *Michael Cole, Karl Levitin and Alexander R. Luria*
> Primary Subject: COGNITIVE SCIENCE
> ISBN: 0-8058-5499-1
> Year: 2005
> Price: $19.95
> Also of potential interest is a book edited by Honorine Nocon and Monica
> Nilsson about an international
> project involving school reform. The relevant information from the Peter
> Lang website if the following:
> School of Tomorrow Teaching and Technology in Local and Global Communities
> Year of Publication: 2005
> Oxford, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, New York, Wien, 2005.
> 186 pp. ISBN 3-03910-273-7 / US-ISBN 0-8204-7201-8 pb.
> This volume provides a description and analysis of findings from a European
> Commission research and development project: «The Fifth Dimension - Local
> Learning Communities in a Global World», funded within the framework
> «Information, Society, and Technology (IST), School of Tomorrow». The
> contributors take as a point of departure that the school of tomorrow, the
> school in the information society, has two significant features. One is the
> expanded use of information and communication technologies (ICT). The other
> is the development of partnerships. The cases described here are based on
> the work of three European university teams from Blekinge Institute of
> Technology in Sweden; the University of Copenhagen and Roskilde University
> in Denmark, and the Autonomous University of Barcelona in Spain, that
> developed collaborations jointly to create new technology-based tools and
> learning environments that expanded beyond school walls. Using the Fifth
> Dimension approach to building learning environments, this network of
> university researchers worked together with teachers and software developers
> to co-design tools, strategies, and materials for teaching and learning in
> the «school of tomorrow». The volume addresses both the challenges and the
> possibilities of integrating technology in schools and classrooms that are
> partners in local and global learning communities.
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