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CALL. 15.08.2020 [SESSION 1]: The Lives of Things in Human Mindscapes: Developing Approaches to Cogn




LUGAR/LOCATION/LUOGO: (Leicester, England)

ORGANIZADOR/ORGANIZER/ORGANIZZATORE: Emanuele Prezioso; Antonis Iliopoulos.

INFO: web - -


What does it mean to say that things are ‘alive’ when referring to the archaeology of mind? This question seems to be of primary significance in cognitive archaeology (Malafouris and Renfrew 2010).The emergence of ‘new materialism(s)’, along with post-humanist and non-representationalist perspectives, has given social scientists new ways to conceive of objects and things as living entities. ‘Symmetry’ (Olsen et al. 2012), ‘interaction’ (Gamble 2007), ‘entanglement’ (Hodder 2012), ‘assemblage’ (Fowler 2017), and ‘indexicality’ (Preucel 2006) are only some of the concepts used by archaeologists seeking to highlight the active participation of things in the worlds inhabited by humans. In cognitive archaeology,this ‘material turn’has been mainly driven by atheoretical framework known as Material Engagement Theory(in short,MET; Malafouris 2013). For MET, things are not the result of a priori thoughts imposed on matter. They are, instead, constitutive elements of thinking as it emerges in situated contexts of material engagement. Of course,the situated processes that give rise to the human ‘mindscape’, so to speak (Malafouris 2012), extend beyond the micro-scale of the situated individual. Appreciating how things shape the mind requires attending to the communities of practice occupying the meso-scale, as well as the inter-regional networks linking them at the macro-scale (Knappett2005,2011). The aim of this session thus rests at tracing the multi-scalar dynamics of cognition, whether be it through ‘material engagement’, ‘archaeological semiotics’ or any other non-anthropocentric approach. All contexts of analysis are welcome.

To submit a paper you need a title and an abstract, which should be no more than 250 words long. Please send your abstract to the session organisers not us here at TAG2020, it’s up the individuals running sessions to decide who is included. The session organisers will get back to you and let you know whether they think your paper fits in their session or not.

The call for papers will be open until the 1st of September.

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