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Jerome Bruner (1983)-child talk- developmental psychology - Essay Example

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Jerome Bruner (1983)-child talk- developmental psychology

For this latter purpose we can compare the views of Bruner with those of Ludwig Wittgenstein (1889-1951), another scholar who had been interested in the same problem and to whom Bruner often refers throughout the book.
The main task that Bruner set before him was to give a proper account of the evident but nevertheless difficult for explanation fact that the majority of children learn language very easily, while it seems that in order for one to be able to learn something completely new, like language is for a child, one must already have some path to follow. For instance, people who learn foreign languages already have a framework of their own language that helps them to structure new knowledge. But the question is what is this framework for children? Before we overview answers that Bruner offered for this question, we should briefly describe the views of Wittgenstein that chronologically preceded "Child Talk". Wittgenstein speculated about the influence of the earliest forms of training between a teacher (an adult) and a pupil (a child) which yet contains no real explanations by the teacher and no real understanding by a child, but which with time helps a child to learn widespread judgements and to start following linguistic rules. At this moment a language understanding substitutes simple behavioural reactions that had enabled the early pre-linguistic training (Wittgenstein 1958). In his turn, Bruner in his book confirms the importance of forms of training suggested by Wittgenstein, but adds that such an early training is possible because of the existence of some forms of pre-linguistic communication, which are at least as important, or even more so, than the training. In this way, we can already see in the approach of Bruner the presence of a complex of cognitive endowments and proper encouragement due to social factors which combine to give children the necessary ...Show more
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Summary

Bruner`s involvement in the field of cognitive psychology made him interested in children`s cognitive development and in particular he attempted to investigate…
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