Universals of Human Thought: Some African Evidence

Overview

This book was originally published in 1981 and the theme of universals attracted a great deal of attention in the decade preceding publication. Psychologists and linguists in particular attempted to identify substantive universals that underlie the social diversity across cultures, which anthropologists and others documented. The contributors to this volume all focus on the relevant data in Africa to explain and test the major questions at issue. The book is divided into three main sections, dealing respectively ...

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Overview

This book was originally published in 1981 and the theme of universals attracted a great deal of attention in the decade preceding publication. Psychologists and linguists in particular attempted to identify substantive universals that underlie the social diversity across cultures, which anthropologists and others documented. The contributors to this volume all focus on the relevant data in Africa to explain and test the major questions at issue. The book is divided into three main sections, dealing respectively with perception, cognitive development and language. There is also a general Review and Prospectus by Jerome Bruner, and a wide-ranging introduction to the philosophical background by Ernst Gellner. The volume will be of particular interest to cross-cultural psychologists, linguists, Africanists and anthropologists.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521298186
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 3/5/1981
  • Pages: 300
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 9.02 (h) x 0.67 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface; Michael Ogbolu Okonji: African psychologist Herman A. Witkins; Contributors; 1. General introduction: relativism and universals Ernest Gellner; Part I. Perception: 2. Pictorial perception and the problem of universals Gustav Jahoda; 3. Tallensi children's drawings Meyer Fortes; 4. Space and community behaviour: a discussion of the form and function of spatial order in settlements Roland Fletcher; 5. Taxonomic and multi-dimensional representations of reality John Gay; Part II. Cognitive Development: 6. 'Strong' and 'weak' universals: sensori-motor intelligence and concrete operations Pierre Dasen; 7. Psychological differentiation Ogbolu Okonji; 8. Cognitive development, education and social mobility Barbara Lloyd; Part III. Language: 9. Language and learning: some observations on the linguistic determination of cognitive processes Nigel Lemon; 10. The formation of relative clauses Bernard Comrie; 11. Literacy and literature Ruth Finnegan; 12. Review and prospectus Jerome Bruner; Indexes.

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