Thinking Through Cultures, by Richard Shweder

01/01/1991View on timeline


The University of Chicago anthropologist Richard Shweder (1991, 72) defined cultural psychology as the study of “the way cultural traditions and social practices regulate, express, and transform the human psyche, resulting less in psychic unity for humankind than in ethnic divergences in mind, self, and emotion.” If we here substitute human brain for human psyche and neural unity for psychic unity and then add “brain” to the loci of ethnic divergence, we obtain an accurate depiction of cultural neuroscience.


The difference between neuroanthropology and cultural neuroscience with regard to neuroimaging is consistent with their conceptual and disciplinary roots in cultural anthropology and cultural psychology respectively. Cultural psychology is indeed cultural neuroscience’s “parent discipline” (Denkhaus and Bös 2012)—but in a manner that involves little more than replacing the “mind” of the psy by the “brain” of the neuro.

Vidal, Fernando and Ortega, Francisco. Being Brains: Making the Cerebral Subject (Forms of Living)....

Cover of the book.
You can buy the book at Harvard University Press, or have limited access to it on Google Books:

Shweder, Richard A. 1991. Thinking Through Cultures: Expeditions in Cultural Psychology. Cambridge,...

Thinking Through Cultures on Google Books

Richard A. Shweder is a cultural anthropologist and the Harold H. Swift Distinguished Service Profes...

Richard Shweder's profile in the University of Chicago's website

Here are two interviews with the author Richard Shweder:

Robust Cultural Pluralism: An Interview With Professor Richard A. Shweder

#9 Rick Shweder on Multiculturalism and Diversity | Half Hour of Heterodoxy

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Published in 14/01/2019

Updated in 19/02/2021

All events in the topic Chap. 2: The Neurodisciplines of Culture:


Invalid DateThe Encultured Brain, by Greg Downey and Daniel H. LendeThe Encultured Brain, by Greg Downey and Daniel H. Lende
Invalid DateSpecial Issues on Cultural Neuroscience
Invalid DateSpecial Issues on NeuroanthropologySpecial Issues on Neuroanthropology
Invalid DateFirst appearance of the term cultural neuroscienceFirst appearance of the term cultural neuroscience
Invalid DateEarly use of the term social neuroscience
Invalid DateSocial Neuroscience, by John T. Cacioppo and Gary BerntsonSocial Neuroscience, by John T. Cacioppo and Gary Berntson
Invalid DateLaunch of the journal Social Neuroscience
Invalid DateFoundation of the Social and Affective Neuroscience SocietyFoundation of the Social and Affective Neuroscience Society
Invalid DateFoundation of the Society for Social NeuroscienceFoundation of the Society for Social Neuroscience
Invalid DateFoundation of the journal Culture & Brain
Invalid DateThinking Through Cultures, by Richard ShwederThinking Through Cultures, by Richard Shweder
Invalid DateThe first Ph.D. in NeuroanthropologyThe first Ph.D. in Neuroanthropology
Invalid DatePrimitive Culture, by Edward Burnett TylorPrimitive Culture, by Edward Burnett Tylor
Invalid DateKeywords: A Vocabulary of Culture and Society, by Raymond WilliamsKeywords: A Vocabulary of Culture and Society, by Raymond Williams
Invalid DateComing of Age in Samoa, by Margaret MeadComing of Age in Samoa, by Margaret Mead
Invalid DateLaunch of the journal Social Cognitive and Affective NeuroscienceLaunch of the journal Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience
Invalid DateAppearance of the term neuroanthropology in the Dictionary of AnthropologyAppearance of the term neuroanthropology in the Dictionary of Anthropology
Invalid DateNeuroanthropology vs. Cultural Neuroscience
Invalid DateNeural Basis of Cultural Influence on Self-Representation, by Zhu et al.
Invalid DateTopics researched in cultural neuroscienceTopics researched in cultural neuroscience