Book Chapter

Cognitive Change and Material Culture: a Distributed Perspective



Wheeler M (2020) Cognitive Change and Material Culture: a Distributed Perspective. In: Hodder I (ed.) Consciousness, Creativity, and Self at the Dawn of Settled life. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 90-106.

Whichever way one looks at it, studying ancient minds is a challenge. This is largely because the main investigative strategies that have proven to be so successful in unravelling the secrets of modern minds are rendered unavailable. Long-dead subjects cannot sign up for reaction time laboratory experiments, and decomposed brains aren’t suitable for neuroimaging. Call this epistemological quandary ‘the problem of ancient minds’. Given that the questions addressed by this volume concern the existence and character of changes in consciousness and cognition at the Neolithic site of Çatalhöyük, there seems little doubt that the problem of ancient minds will be prowling the pages of the various chapters, just itching to make a nuisance of itself.

Publication date31/12/2020
Publication date online31/03/2020
PublisherCambridge University Press
Place of publicationCambridge

People (1)


Professor Michael Wheeler

Professor Michael Wheeler

Professor, Philosophy