This lucidly argued volume covers the key philosophical revolutions that are shaping contemporary psychology. Harr[ac]e and Gillett herald a new paradigm in psychology, dissolving the Cartesian distinction between mind and body in favour of the discursive turn in psychological theory. The authors explore the discursive origins of the self, the problem of agency and social understanding of personality. In the process, they elevate the emotions to a significant place in our understanding of mind, action and being. The theoretical breadth of the book is matched by its treatment of a wide range of subjects, including: consciousness; the brain; perception; thought; personality; and the emotions.

Cognitive Psychology of the First Kind

Cognitive psychology of the first kind

It is misleading then to talk of thinking as a mental activity. We may say that thinking is essentially the activity of operating with signs.

Wittgenstein

Cognition

When psychologists realized that the study of behavior and its relation to physical specified conditions would not suffice for an understanding of what human beings do, they began to try to look at the processes in the mental “black box” that were supposed to intervene between stimulus-input and behavioral-output. The study of these processes was to be the focus of cognitive psychology, the program that we have called the First Cognitive Revolution. Neisser outlines the topic of this kind of cognitive psychology as follows:

“Cognition” refers to all the processes ...

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