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The Essential Child: Origins of Essentialism in Everyday Thought
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The Essential Child: Origins of Essentialism in Everyday Thought

4.44  ·  Rating Details ·  9 Ratings  ·  1 Review
Essentialism is the idea that certain categories, such as "dog," "man," or "intelligence," have an underlying reality or true nature that gives objects their identity. Where does this idea come from? In this book, Susan Gelman argues that essentialism is an early cognitive bias. Young children's concepts reflect a deep commitment to essentialism, and this commitment leads ...more
Paperback, 392 pages
Published March 1st 2005 by Oxford University Press, USA (first published 2003)
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Jessica Zu
Aug 04, 2011 Jessica Zu rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is truly a wonderful book for those of us who wanders why racism and sexism are so persistent in our society throughout history. Understanding essentialism is the starting point for a way out of these social injustices which all of us participate and propagate in different ways.
The good news from Susan Gelman's research is that we are NOT hard-wired to essentialize gender, race and a whole lot of other things. Rather, our mind's essential bents are more likely the unintended effects of our
...more
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