'An array of exciting new studies of child and
adolescent development phenomena.'
Unique in its attention to both cultural
and critical perspectives, this book contributes strongly to the advance
of developmental psychology beyond the cognitive-developmental paradigm
that has defined the field for the past quarter century. It provides insight
from critical pedagogy, cultural psychology, feminism, postmodernism,
critical theory, and semiotics and offers new perspectives into the lived
experiences of children, adolescents, and adults in the contemporary world.
Martin J. Packer is Associate Professor
of Psychology at Duquesne University, and the coeditor of Entering
the Circle: Hermeneutic Investigation in Psychology, also published
by SUNY Press. Mark B. Tappan is Associate Professor and Chair
of the Education and Human Development Program at Colby College, and the
coeditor (with Martin J. Packer) of Narrative and Storytelling: Implications
for Understanding Moral Development.
November 2001 / 352 pages
$26.95 paperback ISBN 0-7914-5180-1
$78.50 hardcover ISBN 0-7914-5179-8
The terms in which psychologists understand
human development have been changing rapidly in recent years. No longer
is it assumed without question that development is solely a process of
cognitive reorganization, directed towards a single, universal endpoint,
and accomplished within the individual child. New attention to culture
and to critique has brought new voices into academic psychology and begun
to transform its institutions: journals; programs; faculty. This volume
makes a timely contribution, unique in its attention to both cultural
and critical perspectives, and will capture attention from a wide readership.
Its origins were two linked symposia presented at the annual meetings
of the American Educational Research Association. The editors sought to
bring together people "doing cultural work" and those "doing critique,"
in the hope that some cross-pollination (if that is the apt metaphor)
would occur. In many respects our expectations were exceeded. These sessions
overflowed the room they were held in, with an engaged and enthusiastic
The chapters in this volume are based on those
papers, together with some additional invited contributions. They explore
implications for developmental psychology of an awareness of culture
and the adoption of a critical stance. They bring insights from critical
pedagogy, cultural psychology, feminism, postmodernism, critical theory,
semiotics and other approaches into dialogue, presenting studies of
developmental change at various points across the lifespan, and offering
reflections on the changing character of inquiry. They illustrate disparate
ways in which the complexities of human development can be grasped and
comprehended, while avoiding the reductionisms of cognitivism. They
contribute strongly to the advance of developmental psychology beyond
the cognitive-developmental paradigm that has defined the field for
the past quarter century. They present an array of exciting studies
of developmental phenomena.
1 : CULTIVATION, TILLAGE 2 : the act of developing the intellectual
and moral faculties esp. by education 3 : expert care and training
<beauty ~> 4 : enlightenment and excellence of taste acquired by
intellectual and aesthetic training 5 a : a particular stage of advancement
in civilization b : the characteristic features of such a stage or
state c : behavior typical of a group or class 6 : cultivation of
living material in prepared nutrient media; also a product
of such cultivation. (Webster’s Seventh New Collegiate Dictionary)
: an act of criticizing; esp : a critical estimate or discussion
crit.i.cism 1 a : the act or criticizing usu. unfavorably b
: a critical observation or remark c : CRITIQUE 2 : the art of evaluating
or analyzing with knowledge and propriety works of art or literature
3 : the scientific investigation of literary documents (as the Bible)
in regard to such matters as origin, text, composition, character,
or history. (Webster’s New Collegiate Dictionary)
"every theory of
criticism is implicitly a theory of culture" (Gunn, 1987, p. 5)
means: the arrangements of artifacts, practices and events that make
up an intentional world
to disclose how culture provides conditions for a possible way of
by uncovering the conditions for the possibility
of a particular form of life; articulating the context this culture
provides for a specific way of living.
play of power, as a place and process of division, exclusion and domination
the operation of power and its consequent exploitations and coercions,
and seeking to undo their effects.
"to empower the
powerless and transform existing social inequalities and injustices"
(McLaren, 1995, p. 168).
Concerned with the dynamics, contradictions,
and asymmetries of power and privilege in human experience.
semiotic forms of messages and texts in human communication
to read critically, to disclose the operation of subtexts; the appraisal
of the ideology of these forms, and the effort to diagnose their latent
operation, the hidden interests at work in messages and texts; analysis
of cultural forms and the ways they are produced and received in social
interaction and human relationship. In general can be subsumed within
a hermeneutic logic of inquiry, and entails a "depth hermeneutics,"
a "hermeneutics of suspicion"