Lucien Lévy-Bruhl

[[Autochrome]] by Georges Chevalier, 1923 Lucien Lévy-Bruhl (10 April 1857 – 13 March 1939) was a French scholar trained in philosophy who furthered anthropology with his contributions to the budding fields of sociology and ethnology. His primary field interest was ways of thinking.

Born in Paris, Lévy-Bruhl wrote about the mind in his work ''How Natives Think'' (1910), where he posited, as the two basic mindsets of mankind, the "primitive" and the "modern". The primitive mind does not differentiate the supernatural from reality but uses "mystical participation" to manipulate the world. According to Lévy-Bruhl, the primitive mind does not address contradictions. The modern mind, by contrast, uses reflection and logic.

Lévy-Bruhl did not necessarily believe in a historical and evolutionary teleology leading from the primitive mind to the modern, but this is often assumed because his work is rarely read in full; rather, his thought is more dynamic, as shown by his later ''Notebooks on Primitive Mentality'', where he admits that non-logical thought is common in modern societies, such as in gambling practices. Sociologist Stanislav Andreski argued that despite its flaws, Lévy-Bruhl's ''How Natives Think'' was an accurate and valuable contribution to anthropology, perhaps even more so than better-known work by Claude Lévi-Strauss.

Lévy-Bruhl's work, especially the concepts of ''collective representations'' and ''participation mystique'', influenced the psychological theory of Carl Jung.

His thought also plays a large part in the work of Norman O. Brown. Provided by Wikipedia