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How best to 'go on'? Prospects for a 'Modern Synthesis in the sciences of mind

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889199068 Year: Pages: 91 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-906-8 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Science (General) --- Psychology
Added to DOAB on : 2016-01-19 14:05:46
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Abstract

Psychology straddles areas from the biological to the social and cultural. Within that vast range, there have been recent explosions of interest in neuropsychology, genetics and epigenetics, and the evolutionary bases of mindedness. Correspondingly, there have been conceptual innovations and new empirical evidence in relation to the embodied, social and discursive processes supporting mind and personhood. Simultaneously, awareness of developmental processes and their dynamic interweaving of genetic, physiological, neurological, social and cultural elements has also increased. Might such developments help ‘connect the dots’ between diverse aspects of mindedness and the contexts within which it arises? Whilst it seems clear that mind is co-constituted of both biological and socio-cultural processes, how might we bring these disparate realms of knowledge together? In a number of these areas, suggestive integrative possibilities have been explored (e.g., predictive processing, embodied and situated cognition, dynamic developmental systems theory) and insights such as a focus on action, ‘knowledge as skills’, embeddedness and connectivity have been pursued across a range of disciplines. This edited collection of articles bring together such possibilities – and others - in the same forum in order to provide an opportunity to re-visit a recurring discussion within theoretical psychology: The claimed lack of - and potential for - theoretical synthesis and unity. While the chapters range over a number of areas of research, this collection is focused on current prospects for conceptual synthesis within - or convergence of research between - aspects of mind and mindedness. As is clear from the contributions, it highlights integrative conceptual proposals that emphasize action-orientation, process, embeddedness and connectivity – especially between explanatory ‘levels’. Beyond specific proposals for integration, several of the contributions explicitly or implicitly expose broader questions about the purpose of psychological research, the epistemological and ontological commitments required, and the relevant social, political and economic contexts within which such research is performed. This is perhaps inevitable since any aim for synthesis of various understandings of mind will - or should - lead to consideration of the general implications, beyond the ‘science’, that follow from an integrated account of mind and mindedness. Whether or not the contributions in this volume provide insights into profitable paths towards greater theoretical synthesis in the sciences of mind or, alternatively, provide grist for the mill of renewed skepticism over the potential or even desirability of such synthesis is unpredictable. Whichever the outcome, we feel sure that they will help provoke future productive research in, and thinking about, the sciences of mind.

Life After Guns

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Book Series: Rutgers Series in Childhood Studies ISBN: 9780813573489 Year: Language: English
Publisher: Rutgers University Press Grant: Knowledge Unlatched - 102876
Added to DOAB on : 2019-02-06 08:17:52
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Life After Guns explores how ex-combatants and other post-war youth negotiated a depleted and difficult social and cultural landscape in the years following Liberia’s fourteen-year bloody civil war. Unlike others who study child soldiers, Abby Hardgrove’s ethnography looks at both former combatants and also the youth who were not recruited to fight. She focuses on the structural constraints and household and family organizations that either helped or limited opportunities as these young men grew into adulthood. Whether young men fought or not, and whether they had cultural capital before the war or not, family relations mattered a great deal in how they fared after the war.

Keywords

Anthropology --- child --- aging --- guns --- violence --- adolescence --- adulthood --- childhood --- war --- war culture --- trauma --- men --- boys --- respect --- reciprocity

A Fair Share of Tax: A Fiscal Anthropology of Contemporary Sweden

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ISBN: 9783319697710 9783319697727 Year: Pages: 136 DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-69772-7 Language: English
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan Grant: Riksbankens Jubileumsfond
Subject: Economics
Added to DOAB on : 2018-05-31 18:01:26
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This book takes a taxpayer's perspective to the relations taxation creates between people and their state. Larsen proposes that in order to understand tax compliance and cheating, we have to look beyond law, psychological experiments and surveys to include tax collectors and taxpayers' practices. The text explores the view of taxes seen as citizen’s explicit economic relation to the state and implicit economic relation to all other compatriots. Larsen suggests how to build and increase tax compliance if we take the idea of taxation creating reciprocal relations seriously. The empirical cases are based on ethnography from two opposing tax practices in Sweden. Firstly, from a study of analysts, auditors, legal experts and managers at the Swedish Tax Agency and how they, quite successfully, strive for legitimacy in their tax collecting activities in society. Secondly, from fieldwork among a group of middle-aged Swedes and how they justify their tax-cheating when purchasing work off the books. Sweden is a modern society seen as particularly rational and the least prone to worry about survival issues; they trust their government and fellow citizens. Sweden is therefore an important country to look at as an example of tax compliance and whether other countries showing a continuous inclination towards these values will follow their lead.

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