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The Concept of Development in the Study of Individual and Social Change

  • Roger A. Dixon
  • Richard M. Lerner
  • David F. Hultsch
Chapter
Part of the Annals of Theoretical Psychology book series (AOTP, volume 7)

Summary

In this chapter we suggest that the major models of developmental psychology may be distinguished in terms of patterns of positions on four dimensions along which the concept of development may be defined. These dimensions include universality, reversibility, qualitative versus quantitative change, and directionality. The pattern of positions taken on these dimensions is indicative of the relative ‘strength’ or ‘weakness’ of the concept of development associated with a given model. In exploring the implications of strong versus weak concepts of development to the study of individual and social change, we focus on the dimension of directionality (and teleology). Two implications are discussed in some detail: (a) the extent to which an interaction between the individual and social levels of change is emphasized, and (b) the position taken regarding the explanatory primacy of the individual or social level of change.

Keywords

Social Change Developmental Change Individual Development Social Level Family Resemblance 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Roger A. Dixon
    • 1
  • Richard M. Lerner
    • 2
  • David F. Hultsch
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of VictoriaVictoriaCanada
  2. 2.Department of Human Development and Family StudiesThe Pennsylvania State UniversityUniversity ParkUSA

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