The Relational Zone – The Role of Caring Relationships in the Co-Construction of Mind

The  literature  rooted  in  Vygotsky‘s  theories has  focused  on  the more strictly cognitive  aspects  of the process  of the  co-construction  of mind,  leaving the affective  nature  of these  interactions  unexplored.  The purpose of this article is  to describe  the  affective,  volitional face  of the zone  of  proximal  development.  By drawing on Nel Noddings’s work on  the ethic  of care, I argue  that the  interpersonal  character  of  the  zone  of proximal  development  closely resembles a  caring  encounter.  In merging caring  and  the notion  of the co-construction  of  knowledge,  I  intend  to  broaden  our  conception  of  the teaching-learning  process  and  to  enhance  our  understanding  of  the  roles played  by affect,  volition,  and  relationship  in  cognitive  development.

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About Giorgio Bertini

Director at Learning Change Project - Research on society, culture, art, neuroscience, cognition, critical thinking, intelligence, creativity, autopoiesis, self-organization, rhizomes, complexity, systems, networks, leadership, sustainability, thinkers, futures ++
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