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Egocentrism

In the field of psychology, egocentrism is defined as

  • The incomplete differentiation of the self and the world, including other people and
  • The tendency to perceive, understand and interpret the world in terms of the self.

The name is derived from the Greek and Latin / ego, which means "I," "me," and "self". An egocentric person cannot completely have compassion, i.e. "put himself in other peoples' shoes," and believes every person sees what she/he sees (or that what he/she sees, in some way, exceeds what others see).

At present the egocentric attitude towards the world is present by and large in younger children. They are not capable to split their own way of life, thoughts and ideas from others. E.g. if a kid sees that there is toffee in a box, he assumes that somebody else entering into the room also knows that there is toffee in that box. He utterly reasons with the aim that "since I know it, you know it too". Egocentrism is therefore the child's inability to see other people's viewpoints

As confirmed in the past this may be embedded in the restrictions in the child's theory of mind skills. On the other hand, it does not stand for that children are not capable to put themselves in someone else's shoes. As long as the mind-set is concerned, it is revealed that children show signs of empathy before time on and are intelligent to assist with others and be conscious of their desires and requirements.

Younger kids previous to age 7, for the duration of the so-called pre-operational stage, selected the picture of the analysis that they themselves saw and were hence found to be short of the aptitude to be thankful for a viewpoint different from their own. In other words, their method of reasoning was egocentric.

Jean Piaget (1896-1980) claimed that young children are egocentric. This does not mean that they are selfish, but that they do not have the mental ability to understand that other people may have different opinions and beliefs from themselves.

Questions:

  • What was the mountain test done by Piaget with his colleague Barbel Inhelder?
  • Is egocentrism beneficial?



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