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Home Journal Index 2021-1

Clear the Clouds and See the Sun in the World of Vygotsky's Ideas: An Interview with James Lantolf

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Lili Qin
Dalian University of Foreign Languages, China


Abstract
Lev Semenovich Vygotsky was one of the greatest psychologists of the twentieth century who, together with his close colleagues, Leontiev and Luria, created a new field of psychology: cultural-historical psychology. They proposed a solution to the crisis between theory and methodology in empirical research. Undoubtedly, he gained worldwide fame due to this contribution. Beginning with an introduction to Vygotsky’s life, educational background, and academic experience, this paper briefly narrates his great achievements in the field of psychological research, as well as the historical development of his thoughts. However, due to Vygotsky’s premature death, his thoughts are often misinterpreted by academia. Through an interview with Professor James Lantolf, a distinguished linguist from Pennsylvania State University, adjunct professor at Xi’an Jiao Tong University and pioneer in contemporary research on Vygotsky’s thought, this article addresses the confusions of scholars in understanding his theoretical underpinnings.

 

Keywords
Cultural-historical psychology, methodology, consciousness, dialectics