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Introduction

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  28 May 2021

Radu J. Bogdan
Affiliation:
Tulane University, New York
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Summary

I begin with some disclaimers. A famous painting by René Magritte shows a pipe yet is mischievously titled (in French) “This is not a pipe.” (Magritte was a communist and a consistently humorous contrarian; I am just a contrarian and rarely humorous here.) The present book has the word “me” in the title and a good part of the text, and it has the word “self” and its various hyphenated combinations on almost every page, yet (no mischief intended) it is not actually, not centrally and not elaborately a book about the self, at least not in the analytic sense explored by philosophers or the empirical sense explored by neuroscientists, psychologists and social scientists. Nor, despite many and often detailed discussions of memory, particularly autobiographical memory, should the book be taken as a fresh contribution to memory research; the memory part is just a prop – albeit an important one – for the overall argument of the book. Nor, finally, despite its subtitle and frequent references and at times extended discussions, is the book really and centrally an analytically detailed and lavishly illustrated account of self-reflection as a mental practice – that is, an account of when and how people self-reflect, through what conceptual and linguistic means, in what concrete contexts, for what specific reasons and in pursuit of what particular goals.

Type
Chapter
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Why Me?
The Sociocultural Evolution of a Self-Reflective Mind
, pp. 1 - 8
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2021

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  • Introduction
  • Radu J. Bogdan
  • Book: Why Me?
  • Online publication: 28 May 2021
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108999496.001
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  • Introduction
  • Radu J. Bogdan
  • Book: Why Me?
  • Online publication: 28 May 2021
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108999496.001
Available formats
×

Send book to Google Drive

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

  • Introduction
  • Radu J. Bogdan
  • Book: Why Me?
  • Online publication: 28 May 2021
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108999496.001
Available formats
×