By Steven Mithen
"A actually pioneering paintings, probably the 1st by way of a training archaeologist to check coherently the evolution of human cognitive abilities." ―Colin Renfrew, writer of Before Civilization and Archaeology and Language
this is an exciting highbrow functionality, within the culture of Roger Penrose's The Emperor's New Mind and Steven Pinker's The Language Instinct. to be able to displaying how the realm of our historic ancestors formed our sleek modular brain, Steven Mithen stocks one provocative perception after one other as he solutions a sequence of attention-grabbing questions:
- Were our brains hard-wired within the Pleistocene period via the wishes of hunter-gatherers?
- When did non secular ideals first emerge?
- Why have been the 1st work made by way of humankind so technically entire and expressive?
- What can the sexual behavior of chimpanzees let us know concerning the prehistory of the fashionable mind?
this is often the 1st archaeological account to help the hot modular inspiration of the brain. the idea that, promulgated via cognitive and evolutionary psychologists, perspectives the brain as a set of specialised intelligences or "cognitive domains," just a little like a Swiss military knife with its really expert blades and instruments. Arguing that simply archaeology can resolution a number of the key questions raised by means of the hot idea, Mithen delineates a three-phase series for the mind's evolution over six million years―from early Homo in Africa to the ice-age Neanderthals to our sleek modular minds. The Prehistory of the Mind is an exciting and not easy clarification of what it potential to be human, a daring new conception in regards to the origins and nature of the brain. 70 illustrations