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Prospects for a Cultural-Historical Psychology of Intelligence

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Chapter Summary

This chapter presents a possible way of reflecting on the concept of intelligence, on the basic scientific ideas underlying it, and the prospects for a cultural-historical perspective on intelligence. In discussing the concept of abilities, Evald Ilyenkov focuses mainly on the aspect of the social mediation and the social character of human thinking and acting. Ilyenkov agrees with Davydov's theory and supports the idea of teaching theoretical concepts on the basis of practical activity. Two aspects of the conception of intelligence in cultural-historical psychology need to be emphasised. First, it is a general problem of quantitative approaches that they seek to apply formal categories to developing intellectual activities manifested in a variety of forms of expression. Second, in regard to a cultural-historical theory of intelligence, both Ilyenkov's Spinozist theory of thought and Hegel's philosophy open up possibilities for a critical analysis of research on and contemporary approaches to intelligence.

Keywords: concept of intelligence; cultural-historical psychology; Davydov's theory; Evald Ilyenkov; social mediation; theoretical concepts

10.1163/9789004246928_005
/content/books/b9789004246928_005
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