Social Cognition and the Acquisition of Self

Social Cognition and the Acquisition of Self

by Michael Lewis PhD, Jeanne Brooks-Gunn


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It is always enlightening to inquire about the origins of a research en­ deavor or a particular theoretical approach. Beginning with the observa­ tion of the mental life of the infant in 1962, Michael Lewis has contrib­ uted to the change in the view of the infant as an insensate mass of confusion to a complex and intellectual being. Anyone fortunate enough to have participated in the infancy research of the 1960s knows how exciting it was to have discovered in this small creature such a full and complex organism. More central to the origins of this work was the perception of the infant as an interactive, not a reactive, organism, and as one who influenced its social environment and constructed its cogni­ tive life, not one who just passively received information. Other areas of psychology had already begun to conceptualize the organism as active and interactive, even while developmental psychologists still clung to either simple learning paradigms, social reinforcement theories, or reflex­ ive theories. Even though Piaget had proposed an elaborate interactive theory, it was not until the late 1960s that his beliefs were fully im­ plemented into developmental theory and practice. A concurrent trend was the increase of concern with mother-infant interactions (Ainsworth, 1969; Bowlby, 1969; Goldberg & Lewis, 1969; Lewis & Goldberg, 1969) which provided the impetus for the study of social and emotional as well as cognitive development.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780306402326
Publisher: Springer US
Publication date: 01/01/1979
Pages: 296
Product dimensions: 0.00(w) x 0.00(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

1 The Origins of Self.- Social Cognition.- Duality of Self.- Theoretical Accounts of the Origins of Self.- Self Knowledge and Self Awareness.- Plan of This Volume.- 2 Mirror Representations of Self.- Mirror Study I.- Mirror Study II.- 3 Videotape Representations of Self and Others.- Videotape Study I.- Videotape Study II.- 4 Pictorial Representations of Self and Others.- Picture Study I.- Picture Study II.- 5 Verbal Labeling of Self and Others.- Labeling Study I.- Labeling Study II 150.- 6 Individual Differences in the Expression of Self Recognition.- 7 Self Recognition and Emotional Development.- A Definition of Emotion.- The Ontogenesis of Emotional Experience and Self Knowledge.- 8 The Development of Self Recognition.- Representational Forms of the Self.- Criteria for Self Recognition.- The Ontogeny of Self Recognition.- Individual Differences in the Development of Self Recognition.- 9 Toward a Theory of the Development of Self.- Self Development.- Self, Interaction, and Other: The Onset of Social Cognition.- Three Principles of Social Cognition.- Social Dimensions and the Categorical Self.- 10 The Uses of a Theory of Self.- The Ontogeny of Thought: A Sociobiological Approach.- The Role of Self in Cognition.- The Self-Other Distinction.- Self and Interaction.- References.- Author Index.

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