The present volume collects some examples of scientific work done by contemporary Russian psychologists, both empirical and theoretical, in different directions of research. Russian psychology in its development has undergone various times, some of them could be characterized as significant intensity of research, some could be described as essential decrease in volume of the leaded development. Those changes were mostly determined by the external reasons: political revolutions of the beginning and the end of the twentieth century, two World wars, which have influenced all areas of Russian life, economic and political shocks of the first half and the end of the same century, ideological restrictions (during the Soviet period) that were imposed on studied problems and treatment of the results of those studies, and also in the form of significant reduction of communication between the Russian and world psychology, etc.
Philosophy of Psycholog
Cognitive Frames in Psychology: Demarcations and Ruptures
This article looks at the main symptoms of the crisis in psychology. The author believes that in addition to the traditional manifestations that have dogged psychology since it emerged as an independent science, there have appeared some new symptoms. The author identifies three fundamental "ruptures": "vertical" ruptures between various schools and trends, "horizontal" ruptures between natural science and humanitarian psychology and "diagonal" ruptures between research (academic) and practical psychology. In the author's opinion, these manifestations of the crisis of psychology have recently been compounded by the crisis of its rationalistic foundations.
Russian psychology which had been cut off from the world science for the greater part of the 20th century is now facing a challenge to join the international mainstream. To facilitate the integration of Russian psychology into the international mainstream, a certain hermeneutics is needed, applied to the explicit methodology and terminology Russian scientists used, as well as to the system of implicit beliefs and assumptions concerning human nature "embedded" into the Russian psychology. The latter is compared to its counterparts in major Western psychological theories.
The paper presents analysis of principles, treatments and ways of using phenomenology in psychology. Six different ways of using phenomenological method in psychology are discerned: as
(1) a method of clarifying of phenomena of consciousness and concepts,
(2) a way of differentiation, description and analysis of psychopathological phenomena,
(3) a way of understanding and penetration to the living world of a person,
(4) a form of subjective self-reports of participants,
(5) a method of psychotherapeutic work with experience,
(6) a qualitative research strategy in academic psychology.
The approach to phenomenology as a special style of research and practice, which implies the intuitive, reflective, unprejudiced, descriptive, detailed approach to phenomena, is developed.
Phenomenology as a Style of Research and Practice
Modern Psychology: Systems Meaning of a Paradigm Shift
The article is focused on the history of psychology from a perspective of its paradigm shifts. Based on the transspective analysis, the author identifies the grounds for progressive development of the psychological science as an open self-organizing theoretical system. The transspective analysis is also considered a methodological tool for studying self-organizing psychological systems. It is asserted that modern psychology is moving toward a post-non-classical paradigm within the framework of which psyche and consciousness acquire a new explanation.
Modern Psychology, philosophy of psychology
The psychological component of terrorism in four major attitudes is considered in the article: psychology of terrorism, psychology of counteraction to terrorism, psychological training of experts and the psychological help to victims of terrorism. Socio-psychological factors of development of terrorism, including concept of "contributing events" as well as hypothesis "frustration-aggression" are investigated. Specific features and the external factors promoting involving into terrorism are analyzed. The system of measures of counteraction of transformation of groups of risk is presented to the potential terrorist organizations, including in aspect of the control over ideology, education, education and work of mass media. Features of work with victims of acts of terrorism and extreme situations, minimization of its negative consequences are made out. Psychological reactions of the experts, engaged by liquidation of consequences of actions of terrorism, resulting works with victims of extreme situations are revealed. Features of vocational training of the personnel working with victims of terrorism and extreme situations are specified. Ways of overcoming of the negative psychological consequences arising at experts as a result of long contact to victims of extreme situations are presented.
Ethnic Identity, Group Status and Type of Settlement as Predictors of Ethnic Intolerance
The results of the field research of intergroup attitudes in Southern Russia (N=723) demonstrated that the relationships of the valence and uncertainty of ethnic identity, perceived discrimination and the level of religious identity with intergroup attitudes depend on a group status (majority-minority) and the type of settlement (dense - sparse). The perceived discrimination predicts the intolerance of intergroup attitudes among the majority group members whereas, the valence and uncertainty of ethnic identity - among the minorities members. The salience of ethnic identity and high level of religious identity predict intolerant attitudes among migrants with the dense way of settlement, the valence of identity and perceived discrimination predict intolerant attitudes among the migrants with the sparse type of settlement. The willingness to distinguish between people by religion provides the maintenance of their group boundaries and identity in multicultural regions of Russia. The growth of uncertainty of ethnic identity, decrease of perceived discrimination and the level of religious identity as well as general ethnic tolerance provide better adaptation of migrants in multicultural regions of Russia.
Social Psychology, Ethnic Identity
Using Psychosemantic Methods in Political Psychology
This articles concerns the relatively and new and specifically developed in Russia methodology of research of social consciousness. The purpose and in the same time the method of the research using this methodology is reconstruction the system of categories (superordinate personal constructs in the terminology of G. Kelly) through which people perceive world and events around him (her). Especially it is very powerful method when dealing with political and socio-cultural issues, because allows to explicate implicit stereotypes which typically are very deep and difficult for diagnostic. Several examples from different topics of political psychology will be presented.
Imagination Inflation After a Change in Linguistic Context
Participants in Experiment 1 completed a 36-item life events inventory (LEI) in their native language (Russian) two separate times, over a 1-week period. Between the two LEIs, participants got 12 items translated from Russian into English and 12 items in Russian. They performed a series of English-language exercises on translated items and Russian-language exercises on non-translated items. After performing exercises on items translated from Russian into English participants increased their confidence that these life events had occurred in their personal past. There was no similar effect for nontranslated items and for control items. Experiment 2 was run to examine if two factors - a change in linguistic context and a change in level of abstraction taken together boosted the effect. Participants completed a 24-item LEI in Russian two separate times, over a 1 -week period. Between the two LEIs, participants got 12 of these life events at the higher level of abstraction (e.g., "Got lost in a shopping mall" or "found yourself at an unfamiliar public place") translated from Russian into English. Participants translated the event from English into Russian and wrote a sentence using the gist of the item. After performing language exercises on items at the higher level of abstraction participants increased their confidence that these life events had occurred in their personal past. The magnitude of effect was almost twice bigger than in Experiment 1. These results indicate that a change in linguistic context can produce imagination inflation. We discuss our findings in terms of familiarity misattribution, whereby processing fluency is experienced as familiarity and misattributed to autobiographical memory.
The article reveals the subject-matter of the systemacity (consistency) principle in psychology and some forms of its realization. Basic statements of the original version of the system approach by major Russian psychologist and science institutor Boris F. Lomov are considered. The state and the tendencies of development of system approach in the modern period are discussed.
The article describes various studies on awareness - unawareness processes conducted at the department of General psychology at St.-Petersburg State University, Russia. The topic under discussion is the aftereffect of the negative choice, which was discovered by the author. This phenomenon is related to some other well-known psychological phenomena. The article discusses the meaning of this phenomenon (the aftereffect of the negative choice) for the research program in the psychology of consciousness.
At the current stage the history of researching creativity appears to have drawn a curve which agrees with the methodological conceptions of L.S. Vigotsky. His idea, that of a psychology which intends to study phenomena in their complexity, should replace the methods of dividing into elementary components (atoms) by methods which single out essential non-elemental units, and should make obvious the logic of understanding creative abilities, as it historically developed in the 19lh and 20lh centuries.
Vector Encoding of Light Intensity in Neural Networks of Visual System
Intracellular research of land snail Helix lucorum L. eye demonstrates two types of visual cells responding to flashes of white light by slow sustained depolarization (D-type) and by slow sustained hyperpolarization (H-type), respectively. Peaks of spectral sensitivity of both cell types at 465-500 nm coincide with peak of spectral sensitivity of photopigment "rhodopsin". The two-channel vector model of achromatic vision of snail is proposed. According to the model, responses of D- and H-cells constitute two-dimensional 'excitation vector' of constant length, the direction of which is the code of light intensity. The two-dimensional vector model of light encoding in snails' eye is analogous with achromatic vision models of achromatic vision in vertebrates based on psychophysical and neurophysiological data in fish, rabbit, monkey and human. So, intracellular data in snail taken together with data on vertebrate animals testify in favor of the hypothesis that 2-dimensioanl module of "bright" and "dark" cells is the universal opponent mechanism of "vector encoding" of light intensity in neuronal nets for vision.
Frequency-Selective Gamma Generators in Processing of Auditory Stimuli
Processing of sensory stimuli is controlled by the top-down influences that shape oscillations in the synchrony form revealed in the EEG. However, little is known about the nature of these influences. The present study investigated the contribution of "evoked oscillations" in the perception of auditory stimuli during passive and active attention from the position of pacemaker hypothesis on the origin of gamma rhythm. To analyze the problem, the author suggests a special method based on the narrow frequency filtering event-related potentials, localization of dipole sources of gamma oscillations over the structural MRI slices. Computation of equivalent dipoles for the discrete frequencies demonstrates interaction between prefrontal and auditory cortex during active attention to auditory stimuli. The obtained results are compatible with the pacemaker hypothesis.
Technology, Psychology, and Crises: Does World History Have a Psychological Dimension?
Data about the victims of social violence in different cultures and historical epochs are provided by wars, political repressions, and everyday violence. Rough calculations demonstrate that while demographic densities and the technical capacity for mutual destruction have increased throughout the millennia, the violent death rate - the quantity of deliberate killings per capita per time unit - has been decreasing. The resulting downward trend appears highly non-linear, dramatic, and mediated by man-made catastrophes, but still, in the long term, progressive. Obviously, some perfecting mechanism of cultural aggression-retention has compensated for technological developments; among those mechanisms was economic development. This issue is explored using the pattern of techno-humanitarian balance.
Historical Psychology, Technology, Psychology, and Crises: Does World History Have a Psychological Dimension?