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Fajardo, B. (1996). Notes: September 1994. CONFERENCE ON CHANGING ECOLOGICAL APPROACHES TO DEVELOPMENT: ORGANISM-ENVIRONMENT MUTUALITIES.. Psychoanal Q., 65:460-463.

(1996). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 65:460-463

Notes: September 1994. CONFERENCE ON CHANGING ECOLOGICAL APPROACHES TO DEVELOPMENT: ORGANISM-ENVIRONMENT MUTUALITIES.

Barbara Fajardo

In the 1990's, the literature of developmental psychology began to include much self-consciousness and introspection about epistemological paradigms and their relationship to research inquiry, experimental method, and data analysis, as exemplified by Emde's 1994 article, “Individuality, Context, and the Search for Meaning” (Child Devel., 65:719-737), and by many articles in American Psychologist and Developmental Psychology. Simultaneously, there has been commentary (such as Parke's in Developmental Psychol., 1992, 28:987-989) about the field's splintering into multiple subspecialties, e.g., cognitive, social, biological, or perceptual development, each constituting an isolated intellectual and academic world with its own politics and social system. This divisive pluralism is counterbalanced by desire for new integrative theoretical frameworks. The search for integration has led to an increasing sophistication about paradigms and epistemology, as was apparent in the debates published in the American Psychologist during the early 1990's. These themes and changes in developmental psychology are consistent with similar trends in psychoanalysis, as evidenced by articles in psychoanalytic journals related to epistemology and to the integration of discrete psychoanalytic schools of thought.

In response to the tensions between pluralism and the desire for a new integrative framework, a conference of academic developmental psychologists was organized to bring together three subgroups within the field.

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