The writings of L.S. Vygotsky continue to be a source of new ideas (inspiration) for people from many different disciplines, nearly ninety years after his death. The practical applications for education are myriad including preschool programs such as Tools of the Mind, Playworlds, and The Golden Key. Vygotskian concepts, such as the zone of proximal development, have also been applied throughout numerous curriculum programs, facilitating learning across the life-span and across disciplines. Yet, one very important aspect of his work remains relatively unknown, the development of creative imagination as a higher psychological function and its coordination with other higher psychological functions in psychological systems. These five Coffee Hours consist of series of ZOOM sessions with a presentation by a guest speaker followed by participant discussion.
You can follow current Coffee Hour discussions HERE. The Five Coffee Hours on Imagination and Creativity in Vygotsky’s Works continue as a Seminar Series. If you would like to join the seminars, contact Francine Smolucha at email@example.com
The 1st of Five Coffee Hours on Imagination and Creativity in Vygotsky’s Works
Hosted by Michael Cole on March 29, 2022.
A conversation with three Vygotsky translators (Francine Smolucha, Bernard Schneuwly, and David Kellogg) about Chapter 4 of Vygotsky’s paper from 1930 Imagination and Creativity in Childhood.
Links to the Readings:
Lev Vygotsky, Imagination and Creativity in Childhood, Chapter 4. English Version/Russian Version
The 2nd of Five Coffee Hours on Imagination & Creativity in Vygotsky’s Works
Hosted by Michael Cole on May 2, 2022.
Featuring Tania Zittoun as Guest Speaker on “The Loop of Imagination”. A discussion of the dynamic relationship between imagination and reality.
Link to the Reading:
The Loop of Imagination. In Zittoun, T., & Gillespie, A. (2016). Imagination in Human and Cultural Development (pp. 38-55). Routledge.
The 3rd of Five Coffee Hours on Imagination & Creativity in Vygotsky’s Works
Hosted by Michael Cole on May 23, 2022.
Featuring Christiane Moro discussing the origins of imagination and creativity in infancy and early childhood.
Link to the Reading:
Vygotskian approach to play itself in play. A working paper presented May 23, 2022 by Christiane Moro, University of Lausanne, Switzerland.
The 4th of Five Coffee Hours on Imagination and Creativity in Vygotsky’s Works
Hosted by Francine Smolucha on June 8, 2022.
Featuring Michael Cole discussing the role of imagination in filling the gap in our knowledge, whether it be perceptual knowledge or knowledge about the past, present, or future.
Link to the Reading:
Minding the Gap: Imagination, Creativity and Human Cognition by Etienne Pelaprat & Michael Cole (2011).
The 5th of Five Coffee Hours on Imagination & Creativity in Vygotsky’s Works
Hosted by Michael Cole on August 15, 2022.
Featuring a presentation by Francine Smolucha on Vygotsky’s three papers on imagination & creativity and their connection with Vygotsky’s theory as a whole.
Link to the Readings: Vygotsky’s Three Papers on Creativity: The Origins and Future of Vygotsky’s Theory by Larry and Francine Smolucha, Slides presented at the Conference on Imagination in Vygotsky’ Works Lausanne, Switzerland, November 19, 2021
Larry Smolucha & Francine Smolucha (2021). Vygotsky’s theory in-play: early childhood education, Early Child Development and Care, 191:7-8, 1041-1055.
I would like to add these two films to the discussion, two favorites of mine that I saw in MOMA in the 1990’s, it is amazing what is on line!
(A famous animator team, a married couple, he refused to denounce communism in the 1950’s in Hollywood — these two films, particularly, help me to think through some of what we are discussing.)
The second is the voices of their children as they play — recorded as Paley did — I wonder if she saw this film, too? Beth
Thanks for sharing these films! They make me think, “play with me” and that there is so much to see.
Everyone is welcome to use this Comments section to discuss anything from the Five Coffee Hours on Imagination & Creativity in Vygotsky’s Works. Some might be accessing the videos and readings for the first time, others might be revisiting them as we transition
to a Seminar format. There are now four sessions since we formally began our seminar series starting with Shannon Brincat’s presentation on Imagination and International Relations.To date we have had nine sessions (Five Coffee Hours and Four Sessions in the seminar). The 9th session was Suki John’s presentation of Sh’ma on Jan 10th.
We are already planning sessions for Feb and March 2023, always making connections
to Vygotsky’s works. Please continue to visit the Cultural Praxis web-site for updates.