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Mental Development in the Child and the Race
ISBN : 8177554670
Author : James Mark Baldwin
Pages : 500 pp
Year of Publishing : 2002
Binding : Hardback
Publisher : Cosmo Publications
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SKU: COSM081 Category: Art, Architecture & Antiquities
Baldwin’s Mental Development is a central text in the development of social psychology in North America and recently has re-emerged as a primary source in artificial intelligence, being part of the set of Baldwin publications documenting what is now known as “the Baldwin effect.” Unfortunately, we have not been able to obtain a usable copy of the 1895 edition and have had to rely on a reprint of the third edition. Intervening years introduced some changes and references in the 1890s documents will not always be relevant to this version.
In his introduction to the reprint, Vahan Sewny wrote:-
“The importance of Mental Development lies mainly in the fact that it represents a pioneer effort to present a picture of the social nature of the self and the manner of its growth. The new evolutionary approach to the subject marked a movement away from the atomistic and rigidly structural interpretations that characterized much of the psychological and sociological literature up to the last decade of the nineteenth century.” (Sewny, 1968)
The book is often referenced as a predecessor to Mead’s analysis of the development of the self. Following Royce, Baldwin had argued for a development process, a stepwise bootstrapping into selfhood, ideas similar to those later expounded by Mead. Also, Baldwin argues for the co-emergence of concepts of self and other, of ego and alter, ideas that would also be developed more fully by Cooley and Mead.