HOW THINGS SHAPE THE MIND A THEORY OF MATERIAL ENGAGEMENT MIT PRESS

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How Things Shape The Mind

Author : Lambros Malafouris
ISBN : 9780262019194
Genre : Psychology
File Size : 37.32 MB
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An account of the different ways in which things have become cognitive extensions of the human body, from prehistory to the present.
Category: Psychology

How Things Shape The Mind

Author : Lambros Malafouris
ISBN : 9780262315678
Genre : Psychology
File Size : 88.71 MB
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An increasingly influential school of thought in cognitive science views the mind as embodied, extended, and distributed rather than brain-bound or "all in the head." This shift in perspective raises important questions about the relationship between cognition and material culture, posing major challenges for philosophy, cognitive science, archaeology, and anthropology. In How Things Shape the Mind, Lambros Malafouris proposes a cross-disciplinary analytical framework for investigating the ways in which things have become cognitive extensions of the human body. Using a variety of examples and case studies, he considers how those ways might have changed from earliest prehistory to the present. Malafouris's Material Engagement Theory definitively adds materiality -- the world of things, artifacts, and material signs -- into the cognitive equation. His account not only questions conventional intuitions about the boundaries and location of the human mind but also suggests that we rethink classical archaeological assumptions about human cognitive evolution.
Category: Psychology

How Things Shape The Mind

Author : Lambros Malafouris
ISBN : 0262528924
Genre : Medical
File Size : 72.37 MB
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An increasingly influential school of thought in cognitive science views the mind as embodied, extended, and distributed rather than brain-bound or "all in the head." This shift in perspective raises important questions about the relationship between cognition and material culture, posing major challenges for philosophy, cognitive science, archaeology, and anthropology. In How Things Shape the Mind, Lambros Malafouris proposes a cross-disciplinary analytical framework for investigating the ways in which things have become cognitive extensions of the human body. Using a variety of examples and case studies, he considers how those ways might have changed from earliest prehistory to the present. Malafouris's Material Engagement Theory definitively adds materiality -- the world of things, artifacts, and material signs -- into the cognitive equation. His account not only questions conventional intuitions about the boundaries and location of the human mind but also suggests that we rethink classical archaeological assumptions about human cognitive evolution.
Category: Medical

Landscape Of The Mind

Author : John F. Hoffecker
ISBN : 9780231518482
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 50.30 MB
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John F. Hoffecker explores the origin and growth of the mind, drawing on information from the human fossil record, archaeology, and history. Hoffecker argues that, as an indirect result of bipedal locomotion, early humans developed a feedback relationship among their hands, brains, and tools, evolving the capacity to externalize thoughts in the form of shaped stone objects. When anatomically modern humans evolved a parallel capacity to externalize thought as symbolic language, individual brains within social groups were integrated into a neocortical internet, or super-brain, thus giving birth to the mind. Noting that archaeological traces of symbolism coincide with evidence for the ability to generate novel technology, Hoffecker contends that human creativity, as well as higher-order consciousness, is a product of the collective super-brain. Hoffecker equates the subsequent growth of the mind with human history, which began in Africa more than 50,000 years ago. As anatomically modern humans spread across the globe, adapting to a variety of climates and habitats, they redesigned themselves technologically and developed alternative realities via toolmaking, tool use, and artistic expression. Hoffecker connects the rise of civilization to a hierarchical reorganization of the super-brain, triggered by explosive population growth. According to him, subsequent history reflects the varying degrees to which rigid hierarchies of states and empires suppressed the creative powers of the mind, constraining the further accumulation of knowledge. The modern world emerged from the fragments of a collapsed empire after 1200 AD. In the final chapter, Hoffecker speculates on the possibility of artificial intelligence and a mind without biology.
Category: Social Science

The Cognitive Life Of Things

Author : Lambros Malafouris
ISBN : 1902937511
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 77.40 MB
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"Things have a social life. They also lead cognitive lives, working subtly in our minds. But just how is it that human thought has become so deeply involved in and expressed through material things? There is today a wide recognition that material culture regulates and shapes the ways in which people perceive, think and act. But just how does that work? This is one of the most challenging research topics for the archaeology and anthropology of human cognition. The understanding of the working of past and present material culture - its cognitive efficacy - is becoming a key issue in the cognitive and social sciences more widely. This volume, with innovative case studies ranging from prehistory to the present, seeks to establish a cross-disciplinary framework and to set out future directions for research. Its aim is to redress the balance of the cognitive equation by at last bringing materiality firmly into the cognitive fold. But how can we integrate artefacts - material culture - into existing theories of human cognition? How do we understand the significant role of the human use of the things we have ourselves created in the development of human intelligence? The distinguished contributors here argue that the boundaries of the mind must now be understood as extending beyond the individual and to include the world of the artefact if we are fully to grasp how interactions among people, things, space and time have come, over thousands of years, to shape the transformations in human cognition that have made us what we are."--Publisher's description.
Category: Social Science

Distributed Objects

Author : Liana Chua
ISBN : 9780857457431
Genre : Art
File Size : 53.98 MB
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One of the most influential anthropological works of the last two decades, Alfred Gell's Art and Agency is a provocative and ambitious work that both challenged and reshaped anthropological understandings of art, agency, creativity and the social. It has become a touchstone in contemporary artifact-based scholarship. This volume brings together leading anthropologists, archaeologists, art historians and other scholars into an interdisciplinary dialogue with Art and Agency, generating a timely re-engagement with the themes, issues and arguments at the heart of Gell's work, which remains salient, and controversial, in the social sciences and humanities. Extending his theory into new territory – from music to literary technology and ontology to technological change – the contributors do not simply take stock, but also provoke, critically reassessing this important work while using it to challenge conceptual and disciplinary boundaries.
Category: Art

How The Body Shapes The Mind

Author : Shaun Gallagher
ISBN : 9780191622571
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 74.73 MB
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How the Body Shapes the Mind is an interdisciplinary work that addresses philosophical questions by appealing to evidence found in experimental psychology, neuroscience, studies of pathologies, and developmental psychology. There is a growing consensus across these disciplines that the contribution of embodiment to cognition is inescapable. Because this insight has been developed across a variety of disciplines, however, there is still a need to develop a common vocabulary that is capable of integrating discussions of brain mechanisms in neuroscience, behavioural expressions in psychology, design concerns in artificial intelligence and robotics, and debates about embodied experience in the phenomenology and philosophy of mind. Shaun Gallagher's book aims to contribute to the formulation of that common vocabulary and to develop a conceptual framework that will avoid both the overly reductionistic approaches that explain everything in terms of bottom-up neuronal mechanisms, and inflationistic approaches that explain everything in terms of Cartesian, top-down cognitive states. Gallagher pursues two basic sets of questions. The first set consists of questions about the phenomenal aspects of the structure of experience, and specifically the relatively regular and constant features that we find in the content of our experience. If throughout conscious experience there is a constant reference to one's own body, even if this is a recessive or marginal awareness, then that reference constitutes a structural feature of the phenomenal field of consciousness, part of a framework that is likely to determine or influence all other aspects of experience. The second set of questions concerns aspects of the structure of experience that are more hidden, those that may be more difficult to get at because they happen before we know it. They do not normally enter into the content of experience in an explicit way, and are often inaccessible to reflective consciousness. To what extent, and in what ways, are consciousness and cognitive processes, which include experiences related to perception, memory, imagination, belief, judgement, and so forth, shaped or structured by the fact that they are embodied in this way?
Category: Philosophy

Embodiment Enaction And Culture

Author : Christoph Durt
ISBN : 9780262035552
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 66.49 MB
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The first interdisciplinary investigation of the cultural context of enactive embodiment, offering perspectives that range from the neurophilosophical to the anthropological.
Category: Philosophy

Ceramic Theory And Cultural Process

Author : Dean E. Arnold
ISBN : 0521272599
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 31.15 MB
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A theory of ceramics that elucidates the complex relationship between culture, pottery and society.
Category: Social Science