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Activity As The Substance Of A Science

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Chapter Summary

Each science defines the specific character of its subject matter or the approach it takes to the subject matter with a basic principle or concept. Both Pavlov and Bekhterev claimed reflexology as a 'universal science', but Vygotsky contrasted Bekhterev with Pavlov, who had made genuine scientific discoveries. For Kantian skepticism, science deals with a domain of appearances, manifesting things-in-themselves which are beyond perception and cannot be the subject matter of science. A 'science of activity' would be a misconception because it would amount to subsuming the subject matter of all the human sciences less than one concept, just as a 'science of matter' would be an abstract totalization of the natural sciences. This work does not aim at a critique of psychology, but is concerned with the use of Activity Theory that impinges on the 'hermeneutic circle' where the psychological insights of CHAT interact with the sociological sciences.

Keywords: activity theory; hermeneutic circle; sociological sciences; Vygotsky

10.1163/ej.9789004184060.i-344.39
/content/books/10.1163/ej.9789004184060.i-344.39
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