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Piskoppel, A.A. (2008). Explanation and understanding in dialogue between "explanatory" and "descriptive" psychologies

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Journal
Methodology and History of Psychology. 2008. Volume 3. Issue 1
Section
Problem of Explanation in History of Psychology
Pages
47-57
Type
Scientific article
Title
Explanation and understanding in dialogue between "explanatory" and "descriptive" psychologies
Authors
Abstract
Explanation and understanding in the history of psychology were opposed to each other as two lines, two different methodological principles of organization of psychology itself. In particular, W. Dilthey consciously and consistently opposed the "understanding" to rational (constructive) functions, and in this respect to "explanation". For this line feature of "understanding" is that it preserves and expresses the experience of communication and connectivity, i.e. it is more or less experience ("comprehension") itself. It is productive to start from the idea of complementarity of understanding and explanation in psychology and from the relevance of each of the types of understanding and knowledge in different psychological subjects and disciplines. In light of signs and semiotic interpretation of knowledge and consciousness thesis of W. Dilthey on the priority of understanding of the explanation for the first time gets the real justification. Putting the "understanding" on the first place means a change of priority of paradigmatics – the transition from the coordinate system "man – explanation – nature" to the system "man – understanding – culture". It allows to allocate, on the one hand, forms of understanding, based on the explanation, – explaining the understanding, and, on the other hand, kinds of explanations based on understanding – understandig the explanation.
Keywords
  • descriptive psychology
  • explanatory psychology
  • understanding
  • explanation
  • consciousness
  • experience
  • givenness
  • thinking
  • logic
  • meaning
  • sign
  • hermeneutics
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To cite this article
Piskoppel, A.A. (2008). Explanation and understanding in dialogue between "explanatory" and "descriptive" psychologies. Methodology and History of Psychology, 3(1), 47-57.

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