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Resolves the fundamental debate between cognitivists and social constructionists concerning the metaphysics of human psychology, and offers new insights into therapy, education, and creativity.
"This book provides a strong, coherent philosophy of science for psychology that builds upon and is consistent with the American pragmatic, functional tradition and the continental phenomenological, hermeneutic tradition. It provides a 'middle way' between an objectivist, positivist approach and a subjectivist, postmodernist approach while being sympathetic to arguments of each. The book is full of important insights. It bridges the gap between European hermeneutics and more familiar American pragmatism and offers new insights into therapy, education, and creativity." -- David F. Barone, Nova Southeastern University
This book addresses one of the most enduring debates within psychology, namely, the conflicting claims of those who adopt an individual, cognitivist perspective and those who adopt a social, culturalist perspective. The authors examine this debate and provide fresh insights that permit the bridging of traditional dualisms between self and society with respect to the subject matter of psychology, and between scientism and relativism with respect to knowledge about this subject matter.
"It is more difficult to explain and defend an integrated, middle-ground position than it is myopically argue for a simplistic, extreme position. Martin and Sugarman accomplish this more difficult task beautifully." -- George Howard, University of Notre Dame
At Simon Fraser University, Jack Martin is Associate Dean of Graduate Studies and Professor of Education and Jeff Sugarman is a Learning and Study Specialist.
Table of Contents
1. The Challenge: Overcoming the Problems of Dualism without Sacrificing the Psychological
Social Constructionism and Cognitive Constructivism in Psychology
Atomism Versus Holism
2. Selves and Societies: The Metaphysics of Dynamic Interactionism and the Emergence of the Psychological
The Dynamics of the Developmental Context
The Emergence of the Psychological Self
Selves and Societies
The Underdetermination Thesis
The Shifting Ontology of the Psychological
3. Scientism, Relativism, and Neorealistic Hermeneutics: An Epistemology for Psychology
The Subject Matter of Psychology and the Challenges It Poses
Avoiding Scientism and Relativism
A Neorealist Hermeneutics
Our Thesis in Summary
4. Applying a Psychology of Possibility and Constraint: Psychotherapy
Social Constructionist and Cognitive Constructivist Perspectives on Psychotherapy
An Integrative Proposal
5. Applying a Psychology of Possibility and Constraint: Education
Sociocultural Versus Constructivist Accounts of Educational Development
Bridging Sociocultural and Constructivist Accounts of Educational Development
Creativity and Innovation
6. Human Possibility and Constraint
The Individual and the Social
Gadamer's Perspectivism and the Ethics of Dialogical Understanding
A Psychology of Possibility and Constraint in Modern Times