© 1991

Symbolic Action Theory and Cultural Psychology


Part of the Recent Research in Psychology book series (PSYCHOLOGY)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages I-IX
  2. Walter J. Lonner, Robert B. Textor
    Pages 1-6
  3. Ernest E. Boesch
    Pages 7-19
  4. Ernest E. Boesch
    Pages 20-28
  5. Ernest E. Boesch
    Pages 29-39
  6. Ernest E. Boesch
    Pages 40-142
  7. Ernest E. Boesch
    Pages 143-177
  8. Ernest E. Boesch
    Pages 178-254
  9. Ernest E. Boesch
    Pages 255-294
  10. Ernest E. Boesch
    Pages 295-361
  11. Ernest E. Boesch
    Pages 362-367
  12. Back Matter
    Pages 368-387

About this book


Gustav Jahoda University of Strathclyde Ever since psychology emerged as a separate discipline about a century ago, there have been differing views as to what it is or ought to be. Some, like Ebbinghaus, saw it as a budding natural science, experimental and quantitative. Others, like Dilthey, regarded psychology in the main as a humane field of study, historical and interpretative in character. The dichotomy of "explaining" versus "understanding" has been a subject of debate ever since. Regrettably, most of the protagonists of these respec­ tive positions tend to view them as mutually exclusive, in spite of the fact that already Wundt had stressed that "hard" experimental and "soft" VOlkerpsychologie are both equally important. For the major part of the present century the field has been largely dominated by advocates of "hard-nosed" scientific approaches, typified first by Behaviorism and, latterly, cognitive psychology which concen­ trates on central processes involved in cognition. Without in any way wishing to denigrate the undoubted achievements of cognitive psycholo­ gy, it has its limitations that are epitomized by T. H. Huxley's dictum "The great end of life is not knowledge but action". This might well serve as the motto for the action theory of Ernest Boesch, who is one of several prominent psychologists out of harmony with the prevailing ethos. They travel under different banners such as "social constructivism", "ethogen­ ics" or "hermeneutics", but all share reservations about what many feel is the arid "scientism" of the mainstream.


Action Theory Anthropologie Anthropology Culture Handlungstheorie Kultur Psychologie Symbol Theory psychology

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Scheidt-SBGermany

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Symbolic Action Theory and Cultural Psychology
  • Authors Ernest E. Boesch
  • Series Title Recent Research in Psychology
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1991
  • Publisher Name Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Softcover ISBN 978-3-540-53992-6
  • eBook ISBN 978-3-642-84497-3
  • Series ISSN 1431-7532
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages IX, 387
  • Number of Illustrations 0 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Psychology, general
    Environmental Health
  • Buy this book on publisher's site
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