New work by Emiliano Bruner on cognitive archaeology and visuospatial capacities

Emiliano Bruner, paleoneurologist at the Centro Nacional de Investigación sobre la Evolución Humana (CENIEH), has participated in a book entitled Evolution of Primate Social Cognition, with an article on visuospatial capacities in prehistoric studies, where he presents kinds of evidence and methods for investigating these elements in the fossil and archaeological record which enable analysis of the spatial integration capacities of extinct human species and populations, including neuroanatomy, the use of tools, and the management of territory.

The paper fits into the context of the theories of extended mind, which assess whether the particular evolution of our species could be the outcome of the capacity to extend our cognitive resources by delegating part of the mental process onto elements external to the brain, namely technology. “In this case, the brain would only be one part of the cognitive system, the body and the environment comprising an integral element of our mental mechanisms”, says Bruner.

Written for the scientific publisher Springer, this article, entitled Visuospatial integration: paleoanthropological and archaeological perspectives, was written with the collaboration of Enza Spinapolice, of La Sapienza University in Rome (Italy), Karenleigh Overmann, of the University of Oxford (United Kingdom), and Ariane Burke, of the University of Montreal (Canada).