Monday, December 27, 2010

Aspects of a critique of the “positive” psychology of self efficacy

M.A. Cohn and B.L. Fredrickson,“Positive emotions” (ref.3), whom I’ve discussed recently (A, B, C) are modest in their terms, relative to how teachers and counselors might be expected to understand their short-term opportunities. Building “personal resources” results from “increases in daily positive emotion” (18) because reliably-recurrent good feelings lead to enjoyable “broaden-and-build” (generative) processes or developmental activities, thereby (I add) self-nurturing talents, self-cultivating interest, and honing one’s own skills (but how such recursive efficacy works remains mysterious in their research summary). C&F attend to a behavioral process happening that seems magically lacking life-centered minds or individuational enactivity: desire, aspiration, purpose, and identity (though all that is easily implied by them—just not focal, which all that should be for a theory of learning, which they claim to be conceptualizing).

Saturday, December 11, 2010


I need ‘mindality’ relative to terms—mentality and mind—that don’t work for what I have in mind.

When one says that something is “mental,” likely meant is that the something is brainy content or a piece of mind. Using ‘mentality’ likely doesn’t mean the condition of something’s being mental; ‘mentality’ usually means something like a frame of mind. There’s a gestaltism, if not holism, implied by “mentality.”