Atran & Norenzayan have proposed a study of religion based in the cognitive sciences. Their final conclusions, however, incorporate functionalist definitions. Further, key features by which they characterize religion are not instantiated by some historical evidence. Nevertheless, the foci of their arguments are central to any study of religion and should provoke further research and experimentation along the lines suggested.
We are pleased to present the following Review Forum of Harvey Whitehouse’s book, Arguments and Icons: Divergent Modes of Religiosity. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000. 204 pages. ISBN 0-19- 823414-7 (cloth); 0-19-823415-5 (paper). We have given the contributors and the book’s author sufficient space to discuss its themes carefully and thus make a significant contribution to the further analysis of religion and ritual generally.
Machine generated contents note: 1. Introducing persons and the psychology of personhood Jack Martin and Mark H. Bickhard; Part I. Philosophical, Conceptual Perspectives: 2. The person concept and the ontology of persons Michael A. Tissaw; 3. Achieving personhood: the perspective of hermeneutic phenomenology Charles Guignon; Part II. Historical Perspectives: 4. Historical psychology of persons: categories and practice Kurt Danziger; 5. Persons and historical ontology Jeff Sugarman; 6. Critical personalism: on its tenets, its historical obscurity, and its future prospects James (...) T. Lamiell; Part III. Social-Developmental Perspectives: 7. Conceiving of self and others as persons: evolution and development John Barresi, Chris Moore and Raymond Martin; 8. Position exchange theory and personhood: moving between positions and perspectives within physical, sociocultural and psychological space and time Jack Martin and Alex Gillespie; 9. The emergent ontology of persons Mark H. Bickhard; 10. Theorising personhood for the world in transition and change: reflections from a transformative activist stance on human development Anna Stetsenko; Part IV. Narrative Perspectives: 11. Identity and narrative as root metaphors of personhood Amia Lieblich and Ruthellen Josselson; 12. Storied persons: the double triad of narrative identity Mark Freeman. (shrink)
In their search for more communal forms of agency that might guide education, contemporary educational psychologists have mostly neglected the theorizing of George Herbert Mead. In this essay, Jack Martin aims to remedy such oversight by interpreting Mead’s social‐psychological and educational theorizing of selfhood and agency through the lenses of the perspectival realism Mead developed in the last decade of his life. This interpretation understands education as concerned with the cultivation and coordination of cultural, societal, interpersonal, and personal perspectives. (...) Within this framework, communal agency is understood as a self‐interpreting, self‐determining capability of persons. This agentive capability derives from immersion and participation with others within sociocultural practices and perspectives, but also includes reactivity to those same practices and perspectives. The education of communal agents as envisioned here emphasizes the social nature of education, students’ experience and development, and the critical role of the teacher as a mediator between student development and social process. Such an education is grounded in the immediate experiences and perspectives of learners, but increasingly assists learners to move beyond their own experiences through engaged interaction with others and with resources for acquiring broader, more organized perspectives on themselves, others, and the world. (shrink)
G. H. Mead developed an alternative "metaphysics" of selfhood and agency that underlies, but is seldom made explicit in discussions of, his social developmental psychology. This is an alternative metaphysics that rejects any pregiven, fixed foundations for being and knowing. It assumes the emergence of social psychological phenomena such as mind, self, and deliberative agency through the activity of human actors and interactors within their biophysical and sociocultural world. Of central importance to the emergence of self-consciousness and deliberative forms of (...) human agency is the ability of developing individuals to take the perspectives of others within their own conduct. However, precisely what is involved in this process, and whether or not it assumes the preexistence of exactly those forms of selfhood and agency, the emergence of which it seeks to explain, have been much disputed. In this essay, recent reinterpretations of Mead's "metaphysics" are used to argue that his overall theoretical program contains resources necessary to overcome charges of ontological and epistemological circularity. In particular, once his interactionism, perspectivism, emergentism, and compatibilism are explicated, it is possible to see that Mead's "taking the perspective of the other" is not primarily a process of internalization that requires a preexisting "internalizer," but a process of participation with others within conventionalized sequences of interactivity. This participatory process enables the development of prereflective forms of perspective taking and self-other differentiation that serve as necessary conditions for the further emergence of more reflective forms of perspective taking, self-consciousness, and deliberative agency. Compatibilist interpretations of deliberative agency, thus understood, also are discussed. (shrink)
Carl Henry devotes a few chapters directly in volume 6 of his God, Revelation, and Authority [GRA] to the problem of evil [POE]. The author examines Henry’s contribution as a theologian, noting that GRA is a work of theology, not philosophy proper. However, Henry had a PhD in Philosophy, and one finds present several presuppositions and control beliefs that are philosophically motivated. Observation of the text reveals several of these. Chief here is Henry’s working assumption that to understand and explain (...) the nature of evil, one must first understand and explain the nature, origin and etiology of good. This point and its implications are developed at length in this article. Unsurprising is Henry’s contribution exhibiting an awareness of methods and theodical approaches traditionally used by philosophers of religion such as Rowe, Plantinga, and Hick. Surprising is the fact that Henry does not clearly take a side on the nature of human free will. What he does say seems to underdetermine his exact position. Finally, the importance of Kant vis a vis Henry’s theodicy and entire theological program is emphasized as well. (shrink)
Two jarring results concerning the main theses of Georg Henrik von Wright's Explanation and Understanding are reached through an examination and criticism of his project. It is shown, contrary to his settled judgment both in EU and subsequently, that the schema of practical inference is a causal principle, and that it is nomological in character. But one feature of von Wright's overall analysis holds up and continues to show promise: his idea of understanding explanation. This idea combines the EU account (...) of the schema and its instantiation with the notion of an intelligible connection of these instantiating elements with one another. Here the schema is deployed in conjunction with the test of intelligible connection as one of its conditions of application. The schema, so deployed, is revisable on the basis of experiences that do not conform to what we expect them to be when they are regimented in accordance with the model of understanding explanation; thus, even though the schema is not a general law, we have a basis for characterizing it as nomological, nonetheless. (shrink)