Psikhologicheskie Issledovaniya • ISSN 2075-7999
peer-reviewed • open access journal


2017 Vol 10 Issue 54

Falikman M.V. New Vygotskian wave in cognitive science: The mind as an unfinished project

Full text in Russian: Фаликман М.В. Новая волна Выготского в когнитивной науке: разум как незавершенный проект

Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow, Russia
National Research University Higher School of Economics, Moscow, Russia 
Institute for Humanities, Russian Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Moscow, Russia

About author
Suggested citation

The paper reveals two simultaneous tendencies in the contemporary cognitive science: the ascendance of neuroscience and the growing interest in those aspects of human cognition which distinguish human mind from operation of a technical device. Current research trends are considered, which group around the ideas of cultural-historical constructivism. As examples of this ''Vygotskian'' wave in cognitive science, we discuss, first, Neuroarchaeology and the Material Engagement theory (L.Malafouris), second, Extended Cognition and the predictive coding framework (A.Clark), and third, the Culture as Situated Cognition theory (D.Oyserman). In the Material Engagement theory, L.Malafouris puts forward the original key concepts of metaplasticity and the material sign, which he uses to analyze co-evolution of human mind and the material environment in the historical development of humankind. According to A.Clark's Extended Cognition theory, human cognitive system at any stage of evolution is open to the material word, which thus becomes its integral part, and the two could be considered only as intrinsically interconnected. D.Oyserman provides an original explanation of the dichotomy of individualist (Western) and collectivist (Eastern) cultures widely discussed in the contemporary cultural neuroscience, relying upon the understanding of culture as situated cognition. Which unites all these approaches are the pronounced interest towards evolution and the idea of the predictive nature of human activity typical for constructivist approaches to cognition. We believe that bridging gaps between state of the art cognitive studies and the cultural-historical activity theory, largely based upon the principle of anticipation, can be considered as one of the primary concerns for the contemporary psychology.

Keywords: cultural-historical psychology, embodied cognition, neuroarchaeology, predictive coding


The author thanks Alexander G. Asmolov for his invaluable comments on the paper.


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Received 14 April 2017. Date of publication: 31 August 2017.

About author

Falikman Maria V. PhD, Dr. habil., Senior Research Associate, Faculty of Philology, Lomonosov Moscow State University, GSP-1, Leninskie Gory, 119991 Moscow, Russia; Leading Research Associate, Cognitive Research Lab, National Research University Higher School of Economics, ul. Myasnitskaya, 10, Moscow, Russia; Senior Research Associate, Institute for Humanities, Russian Academy of National Economy and Public Administration. 
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Suggested citation

Falikman M.V. New Vygotskian wave in cognitive science: The mind as an unfinished project. Psikhologicheskie Issledovaniya, 2017, Vol. 10, No. 54, p. 2. (in Russian, abstr. in English).

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