oa Alternation - To Be is an Answer; Not to Be is the Question: Action, Understanding, and Human Mediation

Volume 10, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1023-1757



The first lesson we learn from Vygotsky is that psychological functions, in their mature state, present as knots, or tapestries, can only be understood if they are undone and the generative processes of their formation revealed. Vygotsky's distinctive contribution to our understanding is grounded in his concept of human mediation. The Vygotskian paradigm is often cast in opposition to or in contrast to that of Piaget and is often captured, if not caricatured, in the statement that '[t]he path from object to child and from child to object passes through another person' (Vygotsky 1978:30). The other person is a 'social other' who serves as a cultural guide and inducts the developing child into the surrounding social milieu.

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