Glozman, Janna
July 2013
Acta Neuropsychologica;Jul-Sep2013, Vol. 11 Issue 3, p231
Academic Journal
This paper deals with the theory of the social genesis of higher mental functions (HMF) developed by V?gotsky and Luria. Their systemic cultural-historical approach, the first premise of developmental neuropsychology, stresses the influence of social and cultural factors on the child's cognitive development, the social nature of function formation, and the role of mediation (the use of social means) in the genesis of HMF. The dynamic ontogenic localization of HMF at various levels is discussed, along with the types of brain structures and their functional integration. The psychogenetic studies done in Russia in the 1920s and 1930s by Luria et al., using the twins method, analyzed genotype - environment relations through cultural-historical theory. These studies revealed changes in the relative impact of heredity and environment due to modifications in mental functioning in response to different educative procedures and the role of speech acquisition in mental development. These psychogenetic studies proved that speech and language have a formative effect on mental processes, and that twins form a risk group in terms of mental development. The psychogenetic studies by Luria also formed the basis of neuropsychological remediation, especially the principles of developing games for small children. The differences between the Russian and Western approaches in developmental neuropsychology are discussed, as well as trends in the progress of developmental neuropsychology. This progress is due to the tendency to analyze the dynamics of brain / mind functioning and interaction through the social conditions of a person's life.


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