The aim of this work is to focus on a basic concept in Brunerian narrative theory, that of violation of canonicity, showing how it relates to other basic concepts of cognitive theories such as anomaly, expectation and relationship between constancy and variability. To reach this aim, we will firstly discuss the Piagetian theory, in particular regarding the way in which the child deals with new and interesting events moved from the need to face and produce “spectacles interessantes” by means of experiencing the violation of canonicity. We will also briefly consider some results of neurosciences studies pointing out that the constancy-variability issue is at the base of human development. Secondly, we will show the convergence between Piagetian theory and Brunerian theory of narration, producing some examples of how violation of canonicity can occur in children and adults.
This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Price includes VAT for USA
Subscribe to journal
Immediate online access to all issues from 2019. Subscription will auto renew annually.
This is the net price. Taxes to be calculated in checkout.
We want here thank Eleonora Bartoli, Roberta della Croce, Benedetta Elmi, Debora Pascuzzi for their contribution to the research carried over by our laboratory of narrative processes
Baillargeon, R., & Graber, M. (1987). Where’s the rabbit? 5.5-month-old Infants' representation of the height of a hidden object. Cognitive Development, 2(4), 375–392.
Bamberg, M. (1997). Emotion talk (s): The role of perspective in the construction of emotions. In S. Niemeir & R. Dirven (Eds.), The language of emotions conceptualization: Expression and theoretical foundation (pp. 209–225). Amsterdam: J. Benjamins.
Bornstein, M.H. (1984). A descriptive taxonomy of psychological categories used by infants, in C. Sophian (a cura di), Origins of Cognitive Skills. Hillsdale N.J., Erbaum., pp. 312–338.
Bruner, J. (1962). On Knowing: Essays for the Left Hand, Harvard, Harvard University Press, On Knowing.
Bruner, J. (1973). Beyond the information given: Studies in the psychology of knowing. New York: W. W. Norton.
Bruner, J. (1990). Acts of Meanings. New York: Hardvard University Press.
Bruner, J. (1991). The narrative construction of reality. Critical Inquiry, 18(1), 1–21.
Bruner, J. (2004). Life as narrative. Journal of Social Research, 3, 691–710.
Bruner, J. S., & Postman, L. (1949). On the perception of incongruity: A paradigm. Journal of Personality, 18, 206–223.
Bruner, J. S., & Sherwood, V. (1976). Early rule structure: The case of peekaboo. In J. S. Bruner, A. Jolly, K. Sylva (Eds.), Play: Its role in evolution and development. London, Penguin Books.
Bruner, J., Jolly, A., & Silva, K. (1978), Play: its role in development and evolution, Harmondsworth, Penguin books;
Burke, K. (1945). A grammar of motives. New York: Prentice-Hall.
Cohen, L. B. (1991). Infant attention: An information processing approach. In M. J. Weiss & P. R. Zelazo (Eds.), Newborn Attention: biological constraints and the influence of the experience, Norwood. NJ (pp. 1–21). Ablex.
Dissanayake, E. (2001). Becoming homo aestheticus:Sources of aesthetic imagination in mother-infant interactions, in Porter Abbott, H. (Ed.), On the origin of fictions: interdisciplinary perspective, “SubStance 94/95” vol. 30, 1, 2. Madison WI: University of Wisconsin Press, pp. 85–103;
Fasulo, A. (2019). A different conversation: the autistic self and narrative psychology. (IPBS, 53, 3).
Fivush, R., & Reese, E. (2002). Reminiscing and relating: The development of parent– Child talk about the past. In J. D. Webster & B. K. Haight (Eds.), Critical advances in reminiscence work: From theory to application (pp. 109–122). New York: Springer.
Gazzaniga, M. S. (1985). The social brain. New York: Basic Book.
Goldberg, E., & Costa, L. D. (1981). Hemisphere differences in the acquisition and use of descriptive systems. Brain Language, 14(1), 144–173.
Graneist, A., & Habermas, T. (2019). Beyond the text given: Studying the scaffolding of narrative emotion regulation as a contribution to Bruner and Feldman's cultural cognitive developmental psychology (IPBS, 53, 3).
Grazzani, I., & Brockmeier, J. (2019). Language games and social cognition: Revisiting Bruner (IPBS, 53, 3).
Hudson, J. A., & Shapiro, L. R. (1991). From knowing to telling: The development of children’s scripts, stories, and personal narratives. Developing narrative structure, 89–136.
Iannaccone, A. , Perret-Clermont, A.N., & Convertini J. (2019). Children as investigators of Brunerian “Possible worlds”. The role of narrative scenarios in children’s argumentative thinking. (IPBS, 53, 3).
Kirkham, N. Z., Slemmer, J. A., & Johnson, S. P. (2002). Visual statistical learning in infancy: evidence for a domain general learning mechanism. Cognition, 83(2), B35–B42.
Labov, W. (1972). Language in the inner city: Studies in the black English vernacular (Vol. 3). University of Pennsylvania Press.
Macchi Cassia, V., Turati, C., & Simion, F. (2004). Can a non specific bias toward top-heavy patterns explain newborns’ face preference? Psychological Science, 15, 379–383.
Macchi Cassia V., Valenza, E., & Simion, F. (2004). Lo sviluppo cognitivo. Dalle teorie classiche ai nuovi orientamenti, Bologna: il Mulino.
Martin, A., Wiggs, C. L., & Weisberg, J. (1997). Modulation of human medial temporal lobe activity by form, meaning or experience. Hippocampus, 7, 587–593.
Mendelson, M. J., & Haith, M. M. (1976). The relation between non-nutritive sucking and visual information processing in the human newborn. Child Development, 46, 1025–1029.
Peterson, C., & McCabe, A. (1983). Developmental psycholinguistics: Three ways of looking at a Child’s narratives. New York, NY: Plenum Press.
Piaget, J. (1936), La naissance de l’intelligance chez l’enfant, Neuchatel, Delachaux e Niestlé; trad. En the origin of the intelligence in children, New York: International university press 1952.
Piaget, J. (1945). La formation du symbole chez l'enfant, Neuchatel, Delachaux e Niestlé; trad. En. Play, dream and imitation. London: Routledge, 1951.
Salvatore, S. (2019). Beyond the meaning given. The meaning as Explanandum. (IPBS, 53, 3).
Siegel, D.J. (1999), The developing mind: Toward a neurobiology of interpersonal experience, New York, Guilford Press.
Skowronski, J. J., & Walker, W. R. (2004). How describing autobiographical events can affect autobiographical memories. Social Cognition, 22(5), 555–590.
Streri, A., & Spelke, E. S. (1988). Haptic perception of objects in infancy. Cognitive Psychology, 20, 1–23.
Vygotsky, L.S. (1986). Thought and Language. Cambridge MA: MIT Press.
Wilson, E. O. (1998). Consilience. New York: Random House Inc..
Andrea Smorti has received a Research Grant from Regione Toscana POR 2014–2020.
The Researchers complied with the ethical standards.
Conflict of Interest
The authors declare that there is no conflict of interest.
All the mentioned studies were carried out in accordance with the ethical standards.
No human subjects were involved in the preparation of the article.
No animals were used or mentioned.
Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.
About this article
Cite this article
Fioretti, C., Smorti, A. Beyond the Anomaly: Where Piaget and Bruner Meet. Integr. psych. behav. 53, 694–706 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12124-019-9477-7
- Narrative development