Relevance. The results of the interaction of man and the environment are fixed and function in the mind with the help of signs and symbols. The need to study the patterns of mastering the subject content presented in a symbolic form, as well as socialization in general, makes it important to appeal to the fundamental question of the correlation of symbolic function with the structure and work of consciousness.
Objective. This article represents the processual model of consciousness allowing to consider the symbolic function as a moving force of human connection with the surrounding world. The essence of this connection is cognitive.
Methods. Analysis, synthesis and modeling. The study was carried out in the concept of a semiotic approach.
Results. Social origin of consciousness allows to model its structure. The following components of consciousness can be distinguished: the sensual fabric of an image; biodynamic fabric of the movement and action; meaning; sense.
The symbolic function should be studied within the concept of the processual model consciousness. Logic of processual model imposes studying of signs and symbols moving from the separate nominal condition through the systemic organization to the reflection.
Conclusions. Consciousness can be studied through the processual model, where the main characteristic of its elements is the interaction and mediation by signs and symbols. The primacy of a sign or symbol is determined by the degree of orientation of the subject in the situation. The transition of a sign into a symbol occurs as a result of the inclusion of a separate sign in an increasing number of sign-symbolic systems. This is possible in the process of personal temporal and spatial inclusion in the general vector of the “chronotope”.
Relevance. On the course of the history human development is attended by and is determined by development of sing and symbolic systems, cultural codes of different languages. Modern civilization dictates the necessity of active intercultural exchange.
Objective. Analyzing the problem of exploring the development of symbolic function being achieved as unity of affective (emotional, “personally experienced”) and cognitive (intellectual, “subjective and knowledgeable”).
Methods. Theoretical analysis of cultural typology presented by B.S. Bibler; structural and content analysis of the world image as a generalized construction of the social realm representativity in the human mind; objective and analytical approach to studying artifacts as social interaction mediated results.
Results. We substantiated the symbolic function as an individual mechanism implemented in culturally determined representation systems necessary for the emergence of interaction between individuals and for learning social implications. Studying the symbolic function presupposes analyzing those cultures where sign and symbolic means are created. Sign and symbolic means as cultural codes mediate human development and, at the same time, determine it. Signs and their systems being used in practical activity record achievements of human experience and allow creation of “cultural artifacts”.
Conclusions. The image of the world is represented in the culture, and cultural types indicate different images of the world in people belonging to those cultures. The structure of artifacts implements the function of the world image: representation of the structure, its logical links, and a set of tools for mediation in their symbolic role as well as the possible form of experiencing. Symbolic function is actively developed while learning. The content of polycultureeducation is focused learning of sign and symbolic systems’ principles creation and functioning. Instruments of activity themselves are considered as primary artifacts, and secondary artifacts are the rules of primary artifacts use.
In the most cited psychological theory of stress and coping by R. Lazarus the concept of “cognitive appraisal” includes evaluation of “threat”, “loss”, “challenge”, “control”, as well as the analysis of the possibilities of coping. The approach is based on separation of cognitive appraisal and emotion. The article presents a different point of view, the theoretical foundations of which are world image concept by A.N. Leontiev, the principle of unity of the cognitive and emotional components of the appraisal, and the categorization as the basis of evaluation. The processes of formation and the structure of the image of a difficult situation are described on the basis of the works by A.N. Leontiev and his followers. Perception creates a sensual image of the situation; cognition creates a meaning, which is linked with understanding of the situation. Reflection represents in one’s conscious a personal meaning, understood as the ratio between the motive and the goal. In the course of categorization the situation is classified as difficult on the basis of certain features (criteria). Based on the theoretical analysis and empirical data, the author shows that the results of evaluations are: a) the significance of the situation; b) matching the events with motives and personal meaning; c) the definition of success of the activities in relation to the goal; d) assessment of accountability, clarity, predictability of the situation, and its impact on the future life; e) the comparison of one’s capabilities with the conditions; f) level of the situation difficulty.