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[xmca] RE: xmca Digest, Vol 75, Issue 5, Bladeless Knives Without Handles (David Kellogg)

Dear all. I have no idea why Kellog refers to my "article" "Vygotsky before Vygotsky" in respect to periodization. I do not have an article called "Vygotsky before Vygotsky", I have the book "Undiscovered Vygotsky" (1999) which provides the periodization. The "article" Kellog refers to is terribly abridged Introduction of my Ph. D. theses. Somebody put it in Internet without my permission.  Everybody who are able to read my book (I hope there are some) can easily see that (1) I do not emphsize any negation and do not stress ABSOLUTE difference between the early Vygotsky and middle Vygotsky. In my book I do something absolutely opposite trying to find the links between the periods. (2) I do not split off early Vygotsky from Marxism. Everybody can easily see my approach in my paper "Marxist and non-Marxist aspects of the cultural-historical psychology of L.S. Vygotsky"   (http://ojs.statsbiblioteket.dk/index.php/outlines/article/viewFile/2110/1873) (3) I do not stress that I am THE FIRST to make the distinction. On the contrary, in my book I undertook an analysis of all other periodizations existed at that time (just to remind that the paper of Mauricio Ernica David Keelog refers to, was published in 2008 which is ten years AFTER my Ph. D. Theses). So I do not think it is OK to make conclusions about colleagues' works using expressions like "extravagant claims of priority and extreme claims of periodizationon" on the basis of short and abridged fragments of texts. It is always better to read the book before criticising its abstract. I have an impression that Kellog's attacks have no serious grounds and are based on his own (mis)interpretations which, in turn, can mislead the people. I also think that we have to avoid the criticism of personalities and concentrate on the content.
Nikolai Veresov    

> a)    Both Rey and Veresov (in his article “Vygotsky Before Vygotsky�) emphasize NEGATION in their periodization: they stress absolute differences between the early Vygotsky (interested in art, literature, imagination, creativity, emotion, and personality) and middle Vygotsky (interested in completely unrelated notions such as history, culture, mediation, tools, symbols, and internalization). I think there is indeed a very important distinction to be made, but I think it is more like the distinction between explanans and explanandum than either writer would like to admit. For example, isn’t an artwork a kind of instrument? Doesn’t art work involve the use of both tools and symbols? It is more than a little suggestive that both Rey and Veresov appear to distinguish a “real� Vygotsky concerned with individual development from a false, objectivist and institutionalized Vygotsky concerned with Marxist psychology and (to link this thread to the
>  last discussion article) the Soviet social project. Rey does take this project much further than Veresov, and tries to split Vygotsky away from cultural-historical psychology altogether (whereas Veresov simply tries to split off the early Vygotsky from Marxism).
> Â 
> b)    Both Rey and Veresov stress that they are the FIRST to make this distinction (and thus ignore each other, as well as writers (Mauricio Ernica, Gunilla Lindqvist) who have made similar points in a less ambitious, less absolutist and (as a result) more acceptable fashion. For example, van der Veer and Kozulin have taken into account the clear examples of reflexological terminology in “Psychology of Art� (even idiots like me! See “The Real Ideal� in the LCHC discussion papers pigeonhole); actually the whole work uses as a unit of analysis an “aesthetic reaction�. Oppositely, there are those pesky works by Vygotsky himself, e.g. “Imagination and Creativity in the Adolescent� which came out in 1931 at the very nadir of Vygotsky’s supposedly “objectivist� period. Of course, knowing how hard it is to get published in MCA, I quite understand the temptation to make extravagant claims of priority and extreme claims of periodization.

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