Introduction: Wittgenstein and Developmental Psychology

  • Michael Chapman
  • Roger A. Dixon


Why Wittgenstein and developmental psychology? What does the renowned philosopher of language have to do with psychological development? At first glance, this juxtaposition might appear to be far-fetched, but a closer look reveals at least three types of connections. First, there are certain aspects of Wittgenstein’s life and thought that are directly related to the subject matter of developmental psychology. Second, Wittgestein’s philosophy has specific implications for the conceptual and metatheoretical foundations of psychology in general and of developmental psychology in particular. Third, certain aspects of his philosophy may also have specific implications for both theoretical and empirical research in developmental psychology. Although the chapters contained in this book do not all fall neatly into one and only one of these categories, they can generally be classified as emphasizing one of these connections more than the others. Thus, Chapters 2 through 4 (by Karl Brose, James Russell, and Roger Dixon) deal mainly with thematic relations between Wittgenstein’s philosophy and aspects of developmental psychology, Chapters 5 through 8 (by Jochen Brandtstädter, Jeff Coulter, Michael Chapman, and Joseph Margolis) address conceptual and metatheoretical issues, and Chapters 9 through 12 (by Eleanor Rosch, Charlotte Patterson, Daniel Bullock, and Rom Harré) describe some implications of a Wittgensteinian perspective for developmental theory and research.


Ordinary Language Philosophical Investigation Psychological Concept Conceptual Confusion Specific Implication 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael Chapman
  • Roger A. Dixon

There are no affiliations available

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