Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology (J Theor Phil Psychol )

Publisher: American Psychological Association

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ISSN 1068-8471
OCLC 313232002
Material type Periodical
Document type Journal / Magazine / Newspaper

Publisher details

American Psychological Association

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Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This article makes the case for “social justice” in relation to the conceptions of “madness” that currently operate in mental health practice. The argument proceeds in eight steps which challenge dominant views of “madness” in the discipline of psychology. Each of these eight steps is linked to the question of social justice. The first step concerns the irresolvable differences between “models” of madness, with a focus here on four mainstream models: the psychiatric medical model, psychoanalytic conceptions of “psychosis,” systemic interventions into family systems, and cognitive–behavioral therapy approaches. The second step concerns the differences internal to each of these models. In the third step I identify a fifth “model” which is usually occluded in psychological debate, the model madness elaborates of itself. The article then turns to the social conditions that structure different models of madness. Step four of the argument is to emphasize the way that models of madness are embedded in structures of power and point five steps back to the historical separation of reason from unreason as condition of possibility for “madness” as such to be configured as object of psychology. Step six is concerned with the “madness” of contemporary social reality, and step seven with the way that this socially structured madness informs clinical practice. The eighth step is to draw attention to already-existing alternative social practices; social justice in action organized by and for the mental health system user and survivor movements. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
    Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 01/2014; 34(1):28.
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    ABSTRACT: From an anticapitalist perspective we examine the personal and political economy of the desires for social justice expressed by psychologists associated with either the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI) or Behaviorists for Social Responsibility (BSR). First, we consider terms and concepts related to social justice and acknowledge our conceptual debts to critical theory, poststructuralism, feminist epistemology, and liberation psychology. To provide context, we briefly review North American psychologists’ historical relationship to the state. Then, after discussing the implications of different accounts of SPSSI’s past expressions of interest in social justice, we assess three collections of articles in the last decade of SPSSI’s house organ, the Journal of Social Issues. Next, we examine the interests in social justice shown by B. F. Skinner and subsequent generations of operant behaviorists, known as behavior analysts. Overall, our review of these two bodies of literature indicates that authors tended to use the language of social justice loosely and to present liberal political visions, abstracted from direct political involvement and aimed at reforming social conditions. Furthermore, we infer that the privileged socioeconomic status of academic psychologists compromises aspirations to contribute to social action that challenges the status quo. Accordingly, we propose abandoning attempts as psychologists to practice social justice. Instead, we advocate joining emancipatory struggles in solidarity with other citizens, while striving to overcome socioeconomic and intellectual hierarchies in academic psychology. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
    Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 01/2014; 34(1):41.
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    ABSTRACT: Although there has been considerable empirical scholarship on the psychological dimensions of social justice, there has been less interest in interrogating and clarifying the philosophical and theoretical issues that lie at the intersection of psychology and social justice. The purpose of this special issue is to bring together a range of established scholars with diverse social and political commitments to reflect on some of the philosophical and theoretical issues that emerge when psychologists address social justice in their research and practice. The major themes taken up in this issue include the relationship between the individual and the community, the role that psychology plays both in promoting and in preventing the development of more equitable social and political institutions, and the way that different forms of universalism (e.g., moral, scientific, psychological) inform the struggle for social justice. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
    Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 01/2014; 34(1):1.
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    ABSTRACT: This document announces news and notes relating to the American Psychological Association Division 24 Society for Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved)
    Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 01/2013; 33(1):68.
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    ABSTRACT: This article takes a dialogical and interactive approach to the development of perception, looking at the role that internal conversation (or microdialogue), feeling, and emotion plays in our perception of self and others. Using the work of Bakhtin and Merleau-Ponty, I argue against cognitive and neurological understandings of perception, affect, and cognition, in which “the mind” is conceived as mental “representations.” Instead, I argue for an embodied understanding of perception and action in which the “field of perception” and our internal microdialogue is informed by the emotional−evaluative stances and intonations of others. Thus, perception can never be emotionally neutral because it is informed by the often conflicted and divided voices that evaluate us, and the action stemming from this is motivated by highly personal emotional stances taken toward things, toward others, and toward one’s own self that centers on the “field of perception.” The idea of the “field of perception” is taken from Bakhtin’s notion of the “field of vision” given to the characters in Dostoevsky’s novels, denoting a person’s own particular point of view on the world and on them self, centered on their microdialogue, from which position they interpret and evaluate their surrounding reality and act upon it. I therefore attempt to show how microdialogue, emotion, and feeling are connected to our own individually oriented involvement in lived interactions with others. These elements are central to our individual field of perception and to how we interpret reality and act within it. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved)
    Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 01/2013; 33(4):267.
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    ABSTRACT: A psychology of the emotions should recognize that culture grounds our experience of emotions, particularly existential emotions such as guilt and the anxiety of uncertainty. Nietzsche and Weber present historical models that emphasize the role of culture in solving the problem of theodicy—explaining seemingly unjust suffering—and thereby conditioning the individual's experience of emotion in response to suffering. More important, they identified the transition from cultural premodernity to modernity with the shift from guilt-oriented to uncertainty-oriented culture. Although individuals in premodern cultures tended to interpret suffering in terms of personal inadequacy and guilt, individuals in modern culture tend to interpret suffering in terms of uncertainty and disillusionment. In the present article I review the histories of theodicy of Nietzsche and Weber. This cultural-historical theory is applied to integrate diverse empirical findings from psychology and anthropology relevant to the relationship between culture and existential emotion and to enrich relevant contemporary theory. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved)
    Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 01/2013; 33(2):107.
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    ABSTRACT: Today, the idea that postcolonialism—the domain of inquiry into and critique of colonialism and its aftermath—and psychology have much to say to each other may nevertheless be met with a number of negative reactions, ranging from doubtfulness to indignity from scholars in academic spheres. It is therefore worthwhile to address why this is the case. “Postcoloniality and Subjectivity,” the title of this special issue, is a collection of several in-depth essays that looks at various aspects of the relation between colonialism and its psychic legacies, culture and society in the postcolonial era—and psychology and psychoanalysis. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved)
    Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 01/2013; 33(3):135-140.
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    ABSTRACT: Postcolonial theory has been ambivalent towards psychoanalysis, for good reasons. One of them is the general suspicion of psychological approaches, with their individualistic focus and general history of neglect of sociohistorical concerns. Additionally, there are specific elements of psychoanalysis’ conceptual framework that draw upon, and advance, colonialist ideology. Freud’s postulation of the “primitive” or “savage” mind, which still infects psychoanalytic thinking, is a prime example here. On the other hand, psychoanalysis’ assertion that all human subjects are inhabited by such “primitivity” goes some way to trouble developmental assumptions. In addition, psychoanalysis offers a number of tools that provide leverage on postcolonial issues—most notably, the damage done by colonialist and racist thought. This article presents some of these arguments in greater detail and also examines two specific contributions to postcolonial psychology made by psychoanalysis. These contributions address the “colonizing gaze” and the “racist imaginary.” (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved)
    Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 01/2013; 33(3):141.
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    ABSTRACT: Embodied familiarization is offered as an overarching conception of learning informed by work in the hermeneutic philosophical tradition, especially the writings of Heidegger, Merleau-Ponty, Taylor, and Dreyfus. From this perspective, learning is conceptualized as meaningful engagement that involves a shift in embodied familiarity—that is, a shift in one’s sense of “dwelling” and capability. This view of learning differs from others in that it is based on an agentic account of human practical involvement (viz., participational agency) and makes no effort to explain learning-related phenomena through mental representation or other reified constructs. As an alternative to traditional learning theories in psychology, embodied familiarization treats concernful, practical involvement as its primary ontological commitment. This conceptual alternative is described through a discussion of four lived phenomena (antecedent familiarity, encounters with unfamiliarity, exploration, and tacitization) and three modes of familiarity (basic, working, and skilled). (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved)
    Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 01/2013; 33(4):216.
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    ABSTRACT: Recent experimental research on concepts has identified a number of important aspects of concepts which appear to be generally incompatible with each other (e.g., research supporting concepts as prototypes vs. psychological essences, or supporting concepts as statistical accumulations vs. generics). We propose that the Aristotelian–Thomistic (A-T) view of concepts provides a theoretical framework within which such disparate results can be accommodated. We show that the classical view of concepts ruled out in the 1970s was not the A-T view of concepts, and that the evidence that rules out the classical view does not rule out the A-T view. We then show that many modern research results are prefigured by aspects of the A-T view. Our review indicates that the A-T view of concepts remains a viable approach and warrants reconsideration. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved)
    Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 01/2013; 33(2):71.
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    ABSTRACT: Psychological theories have alternately been embraced and rejected by those working in the field of postcolonial studies. This essay briefly surveys some of the early psychological approaches to colonization offered by writers Octave Mannoni and Frantz Fanon, before focusing on a group of writers most commonly termed “trauma” theorists—Cathy Caruth, Dominick LaCapra, and Marianne Hirsch—in order to think about the important possibilities created by recent psychological formulations for the ever-shifting terrain of postcolonial studies. The application of psychology to the study of postcolonialism offers a deeper understanding of the effects on the pysche of those who experienced not only colonial traumas (including slavery, forced migration and colonisation) and their descendants, as well as the effects of more recent 20th- and 21st-century traumas of the postcolonial world. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved)
    Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 01/2013; 33(3):170.
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    ABSTRACT: The article discusses the news and meeting announcements of the American Psychological Association's Division 24, the Society for Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology. The article also mentions the passing of Joseph Frank Rychlak. Rychlak was born on December 17, 1928 and passed away April 16, 2013. A clinical psychologist, Rychlak’s teaching career spanned 44 years at five different universities before his retirement. He authored numerous books and chapters, as well received many awards. He was an avid history enthusiast and mentor. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved)
    Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 01/2013; 33(3):203.
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    ABSTRACT: By some accounts, prevalence estimates of bipolar have increased 240-fold over the past three decades, and are twice as high in the United States when compared to worldwide averages. In this article, I argue that these numbers (at least in part) emerge from a circulation of risk in the bipolar milieu—it is now by-and-large one’s potential madness that is diagnosed and drugged. I map out how this circulation occurs via a number of psy technologies: kindling, recurrence, diagnostic hypervigilance, early intervention, excess, reproductive counseling, prophylaxis, drug-induced diagnoses, pharmaceutical marketing, and pharmaceutical consumerism. In turn, I consider how these technologies’ collaborative biologizing, classifying, and pharmaceutilizing of risk interacts with the U.S. political climate of intensified surveillance and security. I thus use bipolar as a site to explore the reconfiguration of psy assemblages within a shifting context of discipline and terror. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved)
    Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 01/2013; 33(3):185.
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    ABSTRACT: Aristotle’s rich account of moral development in children is an ideal vehicle for modern developmental psychologists. His psychology is inherently developmental because he considered actual change to be based on the individual’s potential and to be cumulative. It is also functionalist (psychological states are defined by their operation) and teleological (psychological processes are organized around their outcomes). Aristotle’s ethical system rests on the assumption that the most general goal of a person’s actions is that of producing a flourishing and social life. He argues that ethical development proceeds through three processes: perceiving morally relevant situations, making reasonable ethical decisions, and participating in a fruitful communal life. Navigating through each of these phases requires “moral habituation” which produces a “settled character,” oriented toward producing ethical outcomes for actions. Comparing Aristotle’s account with important modern theories reveals that his is both more encompassing in its range and less encumbered by stage sequence, intellectualist, or subjectivist assumptions. Linking moral development to both philosophical ethics and biological functioning, Aristotle’s theory remains today the most systematic and comprehensive analysis of ethical development, and psychologists would be well served to become familiar with it. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved)
    Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 01/2013; 33(4):233.
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    ABSTRACT: In this article the place of psychoanalysis in thinking about postcolonial subjectivities is considered, and reference is made to the contemporary South African situation. The article is divided into two sections. First, it is shown that, with its attention to the unconscious, to the past and its disguised repetition, psychoanalysis is especially attuned to the displaced routes of colonial desire after the end of official colonial (or apartheid) rule. The second section then considers Frantz Fanon’s strategic deployment of psychoanalysis, focusing on the way Fanon reworked key psychoanalytic concepts in Black Skin, White Masks, emphasizing what he referred to as “sociogeny,” the way colonial neuroses are produced out of an internalization—or “epidermalization” in Fanon’s terms—of racist social structure. The argument made is that psychoanalysis must, if it is to be a part of a critical frame for postcolonial subjectivities, be rendered not only instrument but also object of analysis, a part of the very social structure toward which Fanon shifted his attention. Psychoanalysis is adept at throwing into relief repetitions of the colonial past. Nonetheless, psychoanalytic thinking, pervasive in a postapartheid context—that is, not simply at the isolated level of clinical or scholarly practice, but as a discursive lens for engagements with the South African national past, as exemplified in the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission—emerges as itself a particular kind of acting out the colonial past at an epistemological level. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved)
    Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 01/2013; 33(3):155.