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Integr Psychol Behav Sci. 2017 Jul 24. doi: 10.1007/s12124-017-9401-y. [Epub ahead of print]

Can We Abandon Mediation? A Commentary on the Article "Theorizing with/out 'Mediators'".

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Faculty of Philosophy, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia.


In view of the status of mediation as a long standing and widely used developmental principle, it is clear that theoretical challenging of mediation would have far reaching consequences. Therefore, it is assumed that the best strategy to respond to challenge would be to examine the solidity of foundations of both the principle of mediation and the suggested alternative non-mediational position. This strategy has determined the structure of the paper. First, it offers anthropological, cultural-historical, ontogenetic, microgenetic and epistemological foundations of the principle of mediation in order to justify its historical and theoretical status. In the second step, claims which challenge the necessity and fruitfulness of mediation as a developmental principle will be examined. Within the challenging strategy two argumentative patterns will be analysed: first, the validity of interpretation of mediation principle offered by its critics and second, explanatory potentials of non-mediational standpoints. In conclusion, it will be argued that the proposed non-mediational position does not offer sufficient justification for repudiation of mediation principle and adoption of an alternative non-mediational standpoint.


Development; Marx; Mediation; Symbolic tools; Vygotsky


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