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Title: Handling prehistory: tools, electrophysiology, and haptics
Authors: Fedato, Annapaola
Bruner, Emiliano
Keywords: Arousal;Attention;Body cognition;Cognitive archaeology;Electrodermal analysis;Embodiment;Lower paleolithic;Stone tools
Issue Date: 2023
Publisher: Elsevier
Citation: Cognitive Archaeology, Body Cognition, and the Evolution of Visuospatial Perception, 2023, p. 241-262
Abstract: Humans display a specialized “prosthetic capacity” aimed at integrating tools into the body and brain schemes. The evolution of such technological skill was likely associated with changes in the haptic system, in the ability of sensing tools, and in the attentional feedback associated with tool use. Investigating this topic in cognitive archaeology is indeed challenging. Biomechanical models are traditionally employed to study the evolution of the hand, the tool morphology, and the corresponding grasping patterns. Electrodermal analysis can be instead used to investigate the attentional engagement triggered by haptic exploration of Paleolithic stone tools, associated with changes in arousal and other general emotional components. Experimental evidence shows different reactions when handling different tool types, partially influenced by some physical features of the tools. Such psychophysiological correlates may reveal part of the mechanisms involved in the evolution of the human ability to sense and integrate tools in their cognitive system.
ISBN: 978-0-323-99193-3
DOI: 10.1016/B978-0-323-99193-3.00012-X
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Type: Book chapter
Appears in Collections:Paleobiología

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