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Soc Cogn Affect Neurosci. 2010 Jun;5(2-3):264-73. doi: 10.1093/scan/nsp057.

The brain-artefact interface (BAI): a challenge for archaeology and cultural neuroscience.

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1
McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK. lm243@cam.ac.uk

Abstract

Cultural neuroscience provides a new approach for understanding the impact of culture on the human brain (and vice versa) opening thus new avenues for cross-disciplinary collaboration with archaeology and anthropology. Finding new meaningful and productive unit of analysis is essential for such collaboration. But what can archaeological preoccupation with material culture and long-term change contribute to this end? In this article, I introduce and discuss the notion of the brain-artefact interface (BAI) as a useful conceptual bridge between neuroplastisty and the extended mind. I argue that a key challenge for archaeology and cultural neuroscience lies in the cross-disciplinary understanding of the processes by which our plastic enculturated brains become constituted within the wider extended networks of non-biological artefacts and cultural practices that delineate the real spatial and temporal boundaries of the human cognitive map.

PMID:
20123661
PMCID:
PMC2894672
DOI:
10.1093/scan/nsp057
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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