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How Things Shape The Mind

Author : Lambros Malafouris
ISBN : 9780262019194
Genre : Psychology
File Size : 37.10 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

The Oxford Handbook Of History And Material Culture

Author : Ivan Gaskell
ISBN : 9780197500125
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 71.32 MB
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Most historians rely principally on written sources. Yet there are other traces of the past available to historians: the material things that people have chosen, made, and used. This book examines how material culture can enhance historians' understanding of the past, both worldwide and across time. The successful use of material culture in history depends on treating material things of many kinds not as illustrations, but as primary evidence. Each kind of material thing-and there are many-requires the application of interpretive skills appropriate to it. These skills overlap with those acquired by scholars in disciplines that may abut history but are often relatively unfamiliar to historians, including anthropology, archaeology, and art history. Creative historians can adapt and apply the same skills they honed while studying more traditional text-based documents even as they borrow methods from these fields. They can think through familiar historical problems in new ways. They can also deploy material culture to discover the pasts of constituencies who have left few or no traces in written records. The authors of this volume contribute case studies arranged thematically in six sections that respectively address the relationship of history and material culture to cognition, technology, the symbolic, social distinction, and memory. They range across time and space, from Paleolithic to Punk.
Category: Social Science

Thinking In The World

Author : Jill Bennett
ISBN : 9781350069206
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 78.16 MB
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Engaging with contemporary issues responsibly and creatively can become a very abstract activity. We can sometimes find ourselves talking in terms of theories and philosophies which bear very little resemblance to how life is actually lived and experienced. In Thinking in the World, Jill Bennett and Mary Zournazi curate writings and conversations with some of the most influential thinkers in the world and ask them not just why we should engage with the world ,but also how we might do this. Rather than simply thinking about the world, the authors examine the ways in which we think in and with the world. Whether it's how to be environmentally responsible, how to think in film, or how to dance with a non-human, the need to engage meaningfully in a lived way is at the forefront of this collection. Thinking in the World showcases some of the most compelling arguments for a philosophy in action. Including wholly original, never-before-released material from Michel Serres, Alphonso Lingis, and Mieke Bal, the different chapters in this book constitute dialogues and approachable essays, as well as impassioned arguments for a particular way of approaching thinking in the world.
Category: Philosophy

The Corporeality Of Clothing In Medieval Literature

Author : Sarah Brazil
ISBN : 9781580443586
Genre : History
File Size : 37.39 MB
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Every known society wears some form of clothing. It is central to how we experience our bodies and how we understand the sociocultural dimensions of our embodiment. It is also central to how we understand works of literature. In this innovative study, Brazil demonstrates how medieval writers use clothing to direct readers’ and spectators’ awareness to forms of embodiment. Offering insights into how poetic works, plays, and devotional treatises target readers’ kinesic intelligence—their ability to understand movements and gestures—Brazil demonstrates the theological implications of clothing, often evinced by how garments limit or facilitate the movements and postures of bodies in narratives. By bringing recent studies in the field of embodied cognition to bear on narrated and dramatized interactions between dress and body, this book offers new methodological tools to the study of clothing.
Category: History

How The Body Shapes The Mind

Author : Shaun Gallagher
ISBN : 9780191622571
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 82.21 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

How The Body Shapes The Way We Think

Author : Rolf Pfeifer
ISBN : 9780262288521
Genre : Computers
File Size : 60.94 MB
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How could the body influence our thinking when it seems obvious that the brain controls the body? In How the Body Shapes the Way We Think, Rolf Pfeifer and Josh Bongard demonstrate that thought is not independent of the body but is tightly constrained, and at the same time enabled, by it. They argue that the kinds of thoughts we are capable of have their foundation in our embodiment -- in our morphology and the material properties of our bodies.This crucial notion of embodiment underlies fundamental changes in the field of artificial intelligence over the past two decades, and Pfeifer and Bongard use the basic methodology of artificial intelligence -- "understanding by building" -- to describe their insights. If we understand how to design and build intelligent systems, they reason, we will better understand intelligence in general. In accessible, nontechnical language, and using many examples, they introduce the basic concepts by building on recent developments in robotics, biology, neuroscience, and psychology to outline a possible theory of intelligence. They illustrate applications of such a theory in ubiquitous computing, business and management, and the psychology of human memory. Embodied intelligence, as described by Pfeifer and Bongard, has important implications for our understanding of both natural and artificial intelligence.
Category: Computers

How To Read The Bible Without Losing Your Mind

Author : Kent Blevins
ISBN : 9781630872977
Genre : Religion
File Size : 60.20 MB
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Does reading the Bible sometimes leave you confused? Do you have difficulty seeing the relevance of the Bible to modern concerns or to important issues in your life? Do you believe Bible reading and intellectual inquiry are mutually exclusive? This book explores how the Bible can serve as a resource for discovering truth. It provides a method that accepts and incorporates the knowledge gained from modern scholarship while also recognizing that truth-discovery is a personal, multifaceted journey. It honors the integrity of Scripture while remaining open to insight from additional truth-sources. In exploring what we mean when we speak of the Bible's authority, it is honest about the challenges presented to modern readers by the cultural chasm separating the biblical writers from today's world. How to Read the Bible Without Losing Your Mind shows how the Bible can be read with full engagement of both mind and heart.
Category: Religion

The Uplift War

Author : David Brin
ISBN : 9780307575357
Genre : Fiction
File Size : 23.4 MB
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David Brin's Uplift novels are among the most thrilling and extraordinary science fiction ever written. Sundiver, Startide Rising, and The Uplift War--a New York Times bestseller--together make up one of the most beloved sagas of all time. Brin's tales are set in a future universe in which no species can reach sentience without being "uplifted" by a patron race. But the greatest mystery of all remains unsolved: who uplifted humankind? As galactic armadas clash in quest of the ancient fleet of the Progenitors, a brutal alien race seizes the dying planet of Garth. The various uplifted inhabitants of Garth must battle their overlords or face ultimate extinction. At stake is the existence of Terran society and Earth, and the fate of the entire Five Galaxies. Sweeping, brilliantly crafted, inventive and dramatic, The Uplift War is an unforgettable story of adventure and wonder from one of today's science fiction greats.
Category: Fiction

The Cognitive Life Of Things

Author : Lambros Malafouris
ISBN : 1902937511
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 58.74 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