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The Singular Self

An Introduction to the Psychology of Personhood

Rom Harre University of Oxford & Georgetown University, Washington
© 1998   208 pages   SAGE Publications Ltd   
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Paperback ISBN: 9780761957393 £34.99
Hardcover ISBN: 9780761957386 £91.00
`Harr[ac]e draws on psychology, philosophy, anthropology, and linguistics to develop an intellectually rigorous and integrative understanding of selfhood as a unitas multiplex - a diversity in unity. The breadth of Harre[ac]e's scholarship and the rigor which he evaluates various conceptual positions are awe inspiring. Harr[ac]e's keen insights and erudite arguments about selfhood help to clear a space for an intellectually rigorous psychology of persons. Although many readers will find this a very challenging book, Harr[ac]e bills his text as An Introduction to the Psychology of Personhood. He is laying out some of the basic concepts that must be invoked if one is to develop a credible science of persons.... In conclusion, Harr[ac]e's brilliant exegesis of the grammar underlying self-talk provides a philosophical clearing within which a sophisticated and generative science of persons may be allowed to take place' - Contemporary Psychology

This landmark work draws on material from psychology, philosophy, anthropology and linguistics to develop a hierarchical and structured concept of personhood. Rom Harr[ac]e shows that despite the centrality of our social and cultural identities, the self must ultimately be understood as autonomous, distinct and continuous - as a shifting but unified pattern of multiplicities and singularities.

This masterly analysis offers an opportunity to develop a truly scientific account of personhood. By charting a path across the psychological landscape that acknowledges both the symbolic and the physiological aspects of our being, from language to biology, Harr[ac]e maps the terrain of what it is to be a person in the context of discursive psychology.

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