The Cultural Nature of Human Development

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  • Edition: Reprint
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2003-02-13
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press

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Three-year-old Kwara'ae children in Oceania act as caregivers of their younger siblings, but in the UK, it is an offense to leave a child under age 14 ears without adult supervision. In the Efe community in Zaire, infants routinely use machetes with safety and some skill, although U.S.middle-class adults often do not trust young children with knives. What explains these marked differences in the capabilities of these children? Until recently, traditional understandings of human development held that a child's development is universal and that children have characteristics and skills that develop independently of cultural processes. Barbara Rogoff argues, however, that human development must be understood as a culturalprocess, not simply a biological or psychological one. Individuals develop as members of a community, and their development can only be fully understood by examining the practices and circumstances of their communities.

Author Biography

Barbara Rogoff is UCSC Foundation Professor of Psychology at the University of California, Santa Cruz

Table of Contents

Orienting Concepts and Ways of Understanding the Cultural Nature of Human Developmentp. 3
Looking for Cultural Regularitiesp. 7
One Set of Patterns: Children's Age-Grading and Segregation from Community Endeavors or Participation in Mature Activitiesp. 8
Other Patternsp. 9
Orienting Concepts for Understanding Cultural Processesp. 10
Moving Beyond Initial Assumptionsp. 13
Beyond Ethnocentrism and Deficit Modelsp. 15
Separating Value Judgments from Explanationsp. 17
Diverse Goals of Developmentp. 18
Ideas of Linear Cultural Evolutionp. 18
Moving Beyond Assumptions of a Single Goal of Human Developmentp. 20
Learning through Insider/Outsider Communicationp. 24
Outsiders' Positionp. 26
Insiders' Positionp. 28
Moving between Local and Global Understandingsp. 29
Revising Understanding in Derived Etic Approachesp. 30
The Meaning of the "Same" Situation across Communitiesp. 32
Development as Transformation of Participation in Cultural Activitiesp. 37
A Logical Puzzle for Researchersp. 38
An Example: "We always speak only of what we see"p. 39
Researchers Questioning Assumptionsp. 41
Concepts Relating Cultural and Individual Developmentp. 42
Whiting and Whiting's Psycho-Cultural Modelp. 43
Bronfenbrenner's Ecological Systemp. 44
Descendentsp. 48
Issues in Diagramming the Relation of Individual and Cultural Processesp. 48
Sociocultural-Historical Theoryp. 49
Development as Transformation of Participation in Sociocultural Activityp. 51
Individuals, Generations, and Dynamic Cultural Communitiesp. 63
Humans Are Biologically Culturalp. 63
Prepared Learning by Infants and Young Childrenp. 67
Where Do Gender Differences Come From?p. 71
Participation in Dynamic Cultural Communitiesp. 77
Culture as a Categorical Property of Individuals versus a Process of Participation in Dynamically Related Cultural Communitiesp. 77
The Case of Middle-Class European American Cultural Communitiesp. 85
Conceiving of Communities across Generationsp. 89
Child Rearing in Families and Communitiesp. 102
Family Composition and Governmentsp. 104
Cultural Strategies for Child Survival and Carep. 106
Infant-Caregiver Attachmentp. 111
Maternal Attachment under Severe Conditionsp. 111
Infants' Security of Attachmentp. 114
Attachment to Whom?p. 116
Family and Community Role Specializationsp. 118
Extended Familiesp. 118
Differentiation of Caregiving, Companion, and Socializing Rolesp. 121
Sibling Caregiving and Peer Relationsp. 122
The Community as Caregiverp. 128
Children's Participation in or Segregation from Mature Community Activitiesp. 133
Access to Mature Community Activitiesp. 133
"Pitching in" from Early Childhoodp. 135
Excluding Children and Youth from Labor--and from Productive Rolesp. 138
Adults "Preparing" Children or Children Joining Adultsp. 140
Engaging in Groups or Dyadsp. 141
Infant Orientation: Face-to-Face with Caregiver versus Oriented to the Groupp. 142
Dyadic versus Group Prototypes for Social Relationsp. 144
Dyadic versus Multiparty Group Relations in Schoolingp. 147
Developmental Transitions in Individuals' Roles in Their Communitiesp. 150
Age as a Cultural Metric for Developmentp. 152
Developmental Transitions Marking Change in Relation to the Communityp. 157
Rates of Passing Developmental "Milestones"p. 159
Age Timing of Learningp. 160
Mental Testingp. 161
Development as a Racetrackp. 162
According Infants a Unique Social Statusp. 163
Contrasting Treatment of Toddlers and Older Siblingsp. 164
Continuities and Discontinuities across Early Childhoodp. 165
Responsible Roles in Childhoodp. 168
Onset of Responsibility at Age 5 to 7?p. 169
Maturation and Experiencep. 170
Adolescence as a Special Stagep. 171
Initiation to Manhood and Womanhoodp. 174
Marriage and Parenthood as Markers of Adulthoodp. 176
Midlife in Relation to Maturation of the Next Generationp. 179
Gender Rolesp. 181
The Centrality of Child Rearing and Household Work in Gender Role Specializationsp. 183
Sociohistorical Changes over Millennia in Mothers' and Fathers' Rolesp. 184
Sociohistorical Changes in Recent Centuries in U.S. Mothers' and Fathers' Rolesp. 186
Occupational Roles and Power of Men and Womenp. 190
Gender and Social Relationsp. 192
Interdependence and Autonomyp. 194
Sleeping "Independently"p. 195
Comfort from Bedtime Routines and Objectsp. 197
Social Relations in Cosleepingp. 197
Independence versus Interdependence with Autonomyp. 200
Individual Freedom of Choice in an Interdependent Systemp. 202
Learning to Cooperate, with Freedom of Choicep. 203
Adult-Child Cooperation and Controlp. 207
Parental Disciplinep. 208
Teachers' Disciplinep. 211
Teasing and Shaming as Indirect Forms of Social Controlp. 217
Conceptions of Moral Relationsp. 221
Moral Reasoningp. 221
Morality as Individual Rights or Harmonious Social Orderp. 222
Learning the Local Moral Orderp. 224
Mandatory and Discretionary Concepts in Moral Codesp. 225
Cooperation and Competitionp. 227
Cooperative versus Competitive Behavior in Gamesp. 228
Schooling and Competitionp. 229
Thinking with the Tools and Institutions of Culturep. 236
Specific Contexts Rather Than General Ability: Piaget around the Worldp. 238
Schooling Practices in Cognitive Tests: Classification and Memoryp. 241
Classificationp. 242
Memoryp. 243
Cultural Values of Intelligence and Maturityp. 246
Familiarity with the Interpersonal Relations used in Testsp. 247
Varying Definitions of Intelligence and Maturityp. 249
Generalizing Experience from One Situation to Anotherp. 253
Learning to Fit Approaches Flexibly to Circumstancesp. 255
Cultural Tools for Thinkingp. 258
Literacyp. 258
Mathematicsp. 261
Other Conceptual Systemsp. 266
Distributed Cognition in the Use of Cultural Tools for Thinkingp. 270
Cognition beyond the Skullp. 271
Collaboration in Thinking across Time and Spacep. 272
Collaboration Hidden in the Design of Cognitive Tools and Proceduresp. 274
An Example: Sociocultural Development in Writing Technologies and Techniquesp. 276
Crediting the Cultural Tools and Practices We Think Withp. 278
Learning through Guided Participation in Cultural Endeavorsp. 282
Basic Processes of Guided Participationp. 285
Mutual Bridging of Meaningsp. 285
Mutual Structuring of Participationp. 287
Distinctive Forms of Guided Participationp. 301
Academic Lessons in the Familyp. 302
Talk or Taciturnity, Gesture, and Gazep. 310
Intent Participation in Community Activitiesp. 317
Cultural Change and Relations among Communitiesp. 327
Living the Traditions of Multiple Communitiesp. 329
Conflict among Cultural Groupsp. 331
Transformations through Cultural Contact across Human Historyp. 334
An Individual's Experience of Uprooting Culture Contactp. 335
Community Changes through Recent Cultural Contactsp. 337
Western Schooling as a Locus of Culture Changep. 340
Schooling as a Foreign Missionp. 342
Schooling as a Colonial Toolp. 344
Schooling as a Tool of U.S. Western Expansionp. 346
The Persistence of Traditional Ways in Changing Cultural Systemsp. 347
Contrasting Ideas of Life Successp. 350
Intervention in Cultural Organization of Community Lifep. 352
Dynamic Cultural Processes: Building on More Than One Wayp. 355
Learning New Ways and Keeping Cultural Traditions in Communities Where Schooling Has Not Been Prevalentp. 356
Immigrant Families Borrowing New Practices to Build on Cultural Traditionsp. 358
Learning New Ways and Keeping Cultural Traditions in Communities Where Schooling Has Been Centralp. 360
Cultural Variety as an Opportunity for Learning--for Individuals and Communitiesp. 361
The Creative Process of Learning from Cultural Variationp. 362
A Few Regularitiesp. 366
Concluding with a Return to the Orienting Conceptsp. 367
Referencesp. 371
Creditsp. 413
Indexp. 415
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