The Problem of the General and the Individual in L.S. Vygotsky's Work: Between Empiricism and Dialectics

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Abstract

In the article the problem of the general and the individual is considered as the fundamental problem of psychology. A brief reference of the empirical and the dialectical approaches to the problem of the general and the individual, according to E.V.Ilyenkov, is also given. Considering ideas of Wundt, Dilthey and psychological schools of the beginning of the 20th century, the author reveals the contradictory nature of the achievements of the empirical psychology that caused a crisis of the empirical principle of generalization. The author notes the dualistic foundation of Vygotsky's conception of general psychology, which combines the dialectical approach with features of empirical thinking. The empirical tradition became apparent first of all in his understanding of the method of general psychology. The dialectical trend of investigations gave Vygotsky an opportunity to lay down the foundation of the non-classical psychology of higher mental functions and to overcome the classical oppositions of the general and the individual in psychology.

General Information

Keywords: the general and the individual, generalization, general psychology, K. Marx, dialectics, empiricism

Journal rubric: Discussions and Discourses

Article type: scientific article

For citation: Chesnokova A.G. The Problem of the General and the Individual in L.S. Vygotsky's Work: Between Empiricism and Dialectics. Kul'turno-istoricheskaya psikhologiya = Cultural-Historical Psychology, 2008. Vol. 4, no. 2, pp. 39–49. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)

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Information About the Authors

Alla G. Chesnokova, PhD in Psychology, научный сотрудник кафедры общей психологии факультета психологии Московского государственного университета им. М.В. Ломоносова, Moscow, Russia, e-mail: alches@list.ru

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