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Cultural-Historical Psychology

Publisher: Moscow State University of Psychology and Education

ISSN (printed version): 1816-5435

ISSN (online): 2224-8935

DOI: https://doi.org/10.17759/chp

License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Started in 2005

Published quarterly

Free of fees
Open Access Journal

Affiliated ISCAR

 

The Concepts of “Tool”, “Psychological Tool”, “Sign” and Their Relationship 197

Pavlenko V.N.
PhD in Psychology, Chair of Applied Psychology, Faculty of Psychology, V.N. Karazin Kharkiv National University, Kharkiv, Ukraine
ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4947-3995
e-mail: vnp49@ukr.net

Abstract
The article focuses on a number of key concepts for cultural-historical psychology — ‘tool’, ‘psychological tool’, ‘sign’ — and their relationship, both in the past and modern researches. It analyses different approaches to the interpretation of the concept of ‘tool’ and proposes an alternative version of its understanding. Notably, L.S. Vygotsky moved away from the concept of ‘psychological too’ to the concept of ‘sign’, and this transition is discussed in terms of Vygotsky’s understanding of the latter. The paper presents a comparative analysis of tools and signs in their plain, historically original forms. It is suggested that the main difference between tools and signs is that the function of tools is to replace the individual as a participant of collective activity in its various specific operations, while the function of signs is to replace the individual in just one aspect — in the regulation of social interaction in joint activities. Such understanding is consistent with the idea of the social nature of signs as well as with the idea of the possibility of forming self-regulation on this basis.

Keywords: tool, psychological tool, sign, mediation, cultural-historical psychology

Column: Discussions And Discourses

DOI: https://doi.org/10.17759/chp.2020160112

For Reference

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