Between history and cultural psychology: Some reflections on mediation and normativity when reconstructing the past

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Abstrakt

Innis’ and Brinkmann’s papers (this issue) tackle two key aspects in cultural psychology: the mediating role played by the different systems of meanings throughout history in making sense of the world, and the normative role of those systems, including psychology itself. This paper offers a reflection on these two issues. It begins by highlighting the contribution of psychology and history, as emerging disciplines in the 19th Century, to the creation of a normative framework for the subject of modernity according to the needs of modern nation states. It also alludes to both disciplines’ common pursuit of a reference point in natural science in order to achieve a status that is on a par with the latter’s. It is argued that this resulted in an objectivist stance that equates the study of memory and history with an accurate reproduction of the past, thus concealing the mediated nature of past accounts. Drawing on this assumption, it is
discussed how past events are constructed, thus bringing mediation and
meaning-making to the fore. Special attention is paid to narratives as
symbolic meaning-making tools. We will conclude by discussing usage of
the past and the role that cultural psychology can play in this field.
OriginalsprogEngelsk
TidsskriftCulture & Psychology
Vol/bind22
Udgave nummer3
Sider (fra-til)414-423
Antal sider10
ISSN1354-067X
DOI
StatusUdgivet - 2016

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