A tiny hominin found on the island of Flores, Indonesia has shaken up the world of paleoanthropology births a new perspective for Lord of The Rings fans. Human Origins scientist, Matt Tocheri walks you through your anthro-boner. You will unite or you will fall.


Skeletons locked in eternal embrace (from the Neolithic period): The couple are thought to have died young because both had all teeth intact.
Of course they were. Enjoy this Archaeological find with your sappiness, my antropoloogs!

Skeletons locked in eternal embrace (from the Neolithic period): The couple are thought to have died young because both had all teeth intact.

Of course they were. Enjoy this Archaeological find with your sappiness, my antropoloogs!



It is said that if you stare into his infinite beard long enough, you will catch a glimpse of all the universe’s knowledge for exactly 203 seconds.

It is said that if you stare into his infinite beard long enough, you will catch a glimpse of all the universe’s knowledge for exactly 203 seconds.


"I would define politics as the composition of a common world"

Click Bruno Latour’s beautiful face for an interview with this French social anthropologist on politics, ethics, nature, and so on.

"I would define politics as the composition of a common world"

Click Bruno Latour’s beautiful face for an interview with this French social anthropologist on politics, ethics, nature, and so on.



University of Missouri and Arizona State University researchers have  found a bone that indicates human ancestors had arches in their feet.
Click the photo for the article!

University of Missouri and Arizona State University researchers have found a bone that indicates human ancestors had arches in their feet.

Click the photo for the article!



"Because of climate change, we can see and feel winter days get colder and the sea, it’s warmer. And, because of that, it’s more difficult to hunt in the winters.”


Noam Chomsky, on consciousness

Bertrand Russell asked, “How comes it that human beings, whose contacts with the world are brief and personal and limited, are nevertheless able to know as much as they do know?”

Answers:

  1. Aristotelian lines: the world is structured in a certain way and that the human mind is able to perceive this structure, ascending from particulars to species to genus to further generalization and thus attaining knowledge of universals from perception of particulars. A “basic of pre-existent knowledge” is a prerequisite to learning.
  2. a more fruitful approach shifts the main burden of explanation from the structure of the world to structure of the mind. What we can know is determined by “the modes of conception in the understanding. What we do know, then, or what we come to believe, depends on the specific experiences that evoke in us some part of the cognitive system that is latent in the mind.
  3. conformity of objects to our mode of cognition, the mind provides the means for an analysis of data as experience, and provides as well a general schematism that delimits the cognitive structures developed on the basis of experience. (Kant’s idea)

Chomsky’s answer to that question:

Or systems of belief are those that the mind, as a biological structure, is designed to construct. We interpret experience as we do because of our special mental design. We attain knowledge when the “inward ideas of the mind itself and the structures it creates conform to the nature of things.

It is generally assumed that in these domains, social environment is the dominant factor. The structures of mind that develop over time are taken to be arbitrary and accidental; there is no “human nature” apart from what develops as a specific historical product.  According to this view, typical of empiricism speculation, certain general principles of learning that are common in their essentials to all (or some large class of) organisms suffice to account for the cognitive structures attained by humans, structures which incorporate the principles by which humans behavior is planned, organized, and controlled. I dismiss without further comment the exotic though influential view that “internal states” should not be considered in the study of behavior.

Why has it been so causally assumed that there exists a “learning theory” that can account for the acquisition of cognitive structures through experience?

No doubt what the organism does depends in part on its experience, but it seems to me entirely hopeless to investigate directly the relation between experience and action.

If we are interested in the problem of “causation of behavior” as a problem of science, we should at least analyze the relation of experience to behavior into two parts:

1.      relates experience to cognitive state

2.      mechanism, which relates stimulus conditions to behavior, given the cognitive state

the proper way to exorcise the ghost in the machine is to determine the structure of the mind and its products.

Body and mind are two substances, one an extended substance, the other a thinking substance. The first falls within mechanical philosophy, the latter not.