Vygotsky : An Intellectual Biography

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This intellectual biography offers a fundamentally novel account of the life and times of Lev Vygotsky, who has long been considered a pioneer in the field of learning and human development. The diverse Vygotskian literature has created many distinct images of this influential scientist, which has led many researchers to attempt to unearth 'the real Vygotsky'. Rather than join this quest to over-simplify Vygotsky's legacy, this book attempts to understand the development of 'the multiple Vygotksies' by exploring a number of personae that Vygotsky assumed at different periods of his life. Based on the most recent archival, textological and historical investigations in original, uncensored Russian, the authors present a ground-breaking account that is far from the shiny success story that is typically associated with 'the cult of Vygotsky'. Vygotsky's theories of learning and human development have been widely disseminated, but new evidence suggests that Vygotsky became increasingly critical of his own ideas and had never planned to publish his manuscripts. Shortly before his death he attempted to destroy what he had created, but in the remaining time of his life he failed to create something new, coherent and theoretically solid in its place. However, in this book, the authors suggest that his final work is the most interesting and promising line of Vygotskian research -- considerably influenced by German-American Gestalt psychology -- that, as unfinished and fragmentary as it is, remains of relevance to and importance for contemporary psychological theory. This book will be an essential contribution to Vygotskian scholarship and of interest to advanced students and researchers in history of psychology, history of science, Soviet/Russian history, philosophical psychology and philosophy of science.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 224 pages
  • 156 x 234mm
  • Taylor & Francis Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1138806730
  • 9781138806733

About Anton Yasnitsky

Anton Yasnitsky is Research Associate at University of Toronto, Canada. Rene van der Veer is Professor at the Department of Education and Child Studies, University of Leiden, the Netherlands.show more