RE: [xmca] George Herbert Mead. help please

From: Michael Glassman <MGlassman who-is-at>
Date: Thu Nov 01 2007 - 05:02:58 PDT

It's difficult to describe, but even though the theorists don't get so much play, much of the theory of Mead and the others is integrated in to everyday activity in United States society (why the disconnect? Hmmmm.) Every time somebody does Case Management they are testing this theory. Many drug programs and housing programs are testing this theory. Most street level social work is working within and testing this theory. Many teachers, inside the classroom, are continuously testing this theory (Standardized Curriculums can be seen as a frontal political attack on these ideas). The results need to be empirical but they are not positivist, and they are not generalizable - which in itself is part of Pragmatic thought. It is not so much these ideas aren't constantly used and tested, but perhaps more the way we view testing and evidence.


From: on behalf of Andy Blunden
Sent: Wed 10/31/2007 9:14 AM
To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
Subject: RE: [xmca] George Herbert Mead. help please

Please understand Michael that my knowledge of Mead is very thin; I only
know what have read in terms of a couple of hundred pages of his writings,
a couple of biographical articles and of course I am familiar with the
Progressive Movement, Dewey, Peirce and everyone, of which he was a part.
But I get the impression that he worked out these ideas, as you say, in
dialogue especially with Dewey and in the midst of that milieu, but I don't
imagine that there was a lot of laboratory work involved, controlled
experiments and observation, and so on, by Mead, during his own lifetime.
The Vygotsky school on the other and incorporates today many decades of
empirical and practical experimental work and observation by scores of
psychologists. Yes? How many research groups or psychological practitioners
use Symbolic Interactionism specifically today, as their comprehensive
theoretical paradigm?

At 08:58 AM 31/10/2007 -0400, you wrote:
>Mead's work was not just one man - he was surrounded by an entire group at
>the University of Chicago that had come together under the umbrella of
>this type of Pragmatic thought. John Dewey recruited him to the
>University of Chicago from the Univfersity of Michigan, and they were best
>friends - both intellectually and socially. There was also a large, more
>application oriented group centered around Jane Addams and Hull House, and
>the nascent labor movement. When Dewey went to Columbia, there was a
>great deal of cross-pollination between the group he started at Columbia
>and Mead who stayed at the University of Chicago and the remains of that
>group. Mead's ideas are not the ideas of one man but a brilliant
>philosophical movement that helped to create what we now call psychology,
>and sociology, and qualitative methodology, and even to a certain extent
>much of modern anthropology (Boas was also a marginal member of this whole
>I'm interested, why would you think the ideas are so much more speculative
>than say CHAT?
>From: on behalf of Andy Blunden
>Sent: Wed 10/31/2007 8:21 AM
>Subject: [xmca] George Herbert Mead. help please
>I'm currently reading a collection of George Herbert Mead, which confirms
>my view that his ideas on social psychology were very close to our own,
>though inevitably, as the work of just one man, relatively speculative.
>Can anyone recommend to me a critique of Mead by a CHAT person, perhaps a
>message in the XCMA archive or a paper available in HTML or PDF? I know
>that you guys cover him in your courses at UCSD.
> Andy Blunden : tel (H) +61 3 9380 9435,
>mobile 0409 358 651
>xmca mailing list
>xmca mailing list

  Andy Blunden : tel (H) +61 3 9380 9435,
mobile 0409 358 651

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Received on Thu Nov 1 05:09 PDT 2007

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