Confronting Theory: The Psychology of Cultural Studies

Intellect, University of Chicago Press
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2010, 1
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The eight essays in this book address overlapping aspects of the theoretical assumption that human experience, culture, communication, and 'life' itself can be meaningfully understood without reference to 'human nature' (however flexible and non-essentialist that concept may be). I present arguments against the idea that systematic empirical knowledge about people, their biology and their psychology, is irrelevant to the domains of the humanities [sicJ and social sciences. I regard it as educationally imperative that students be taught that it is possible to know objective things about why and how people behave and feel as they do in particular cultural and social circumstances. I mount this thesis by examining key concepts and assumptions in post-humanist capital-T Theory: is it epistemologically and ontologically more tenable, more productive, more useful as the basis for conversing about cultural life than the episteme that it overturns?
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