New Directions in Psychological Anthropology

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The field of psychological anthropology has changed a great deal since the 1940s and 1950s, when it was often known as "Culture and Personality Studies." Rooted in psychoanalytic psychology, its early practitioners sought to extend that psychology through the study of cross-cultural variation in personality and child-rearing practices. Psychological anthropology has since developed in a number of new directions. Tensions between individual experience and collective meanings remain as central to the field as they were fifty years ago, but, alongside fresh versions of the psychoanalytic approach, other approaches to the study of cognition, emotion, the body, and the very nature of subjectivity have been introduced. And in the place of an earlier tendency to treat a "culture" as an undifferentiated whole, psychological anthropology now recognizes the complex internal structure of cultures.

The contributors to this state-of-the-art collection are all leading figures in contemporary psychological anthropology, and they write about recent developments in the field. Sections of the book discuss cognition, developmental psychology, biology, psychiatry, and psychoanalysis, areas that have always been integral to psychological anthropology but which are now being transformed by new perspectives on the body, meaning, agency and communicative practice.

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Editorial Reviews

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"...state-of-the-art collection of papers by prominent scholars....This volume will interest many psychologists and social scientists concerned with clinical phenomena. It should also interest psychiatrists....a useful reference." The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease

"...a thoughtful and thorough account of what anthropologists working in this area have come up with to date....Reading through this volume is to hear psychology in a new interpretive key....[T]hese rewards make the voyage of discovery that this book offers well worth the effort." Mark Glat, Contemporary Psychology

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Product Details

Table of Contents

List of contributors
Introduction 1
I Cognition and social selves
1 Ethnopsychology 21
2 Cognitive anthropology 47
3 Schemes for schemata 59
4 The woman who climbed up the house: some limitations of schema theory 68
II Learning to be human
5 Language as tool in the socialization and apprehension of cultural meanings 83
6 Human development in psychological anthropology 102
III The body's person
7 Putting people in biology: toward a synthesis of biological and psychological anthropology 125
8 Cupid and Psyche: investigative syncretism in biological and psychosocial anthropology 150
IV Psychiatry and its contexts
9 Culture and psychopathology: directions for psychiatric anthropology 181
10 A prologue to a psychiatric anthropology 206
11 Hungry bodies, medicine, and the state: toward a critical psychological anthropology 221
V Psychoanalytic approaches
12 Is psychoanalysis relevant for anthropology? 251
13 Intent and meaning in psychoanalysis and cultural study 269
14 Some thoughts on hermeneutics and psychoanalytic anthropology 294
VI Disciplinary perspectives
15 Polarity and plurality: Franz Boas as psychological anthropologist 311
16 Anthropology and psychology: an unrequited relationship 324
Index 350
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