This month’s featured book that the Center for Cognitive Archaeology faculty want to highlight is Squeezing Minds From Stones, a collection of essays edited by UCCS alum Karenleigh A. Overmann and UCCS Professor Frederick L. Coolidge.
Cognitive archaeology is an exciting interdisciplinary science that interprets ancient artifacts—stone tools, beads, figurines, and art forms—using insights from cognitive science in order to understand the minds of their makers. Squeezing Minds From Stones is a collection of essays co-edited by cognitive archaeologist Karenleigh A. Overmann and neuropsychologist Frederick L. Coolidge. The essays range from early pioneers in the field, archaeologists like Thomas Wynn and Iain Davidson and evolutionary primatologist William McGrew, to ‘up and coming’ newcomers like Shelby Putt, Ceri Shipton, Mark Moore, James Cole, Natalie Uomini, and Lana Ruck. The essays address a wide variety of topics in contemporary cognitive archaeology: the evolutionary bases for cognition, how stone tools may reflect the brains and minds of their makers, when and how stone tools move from the practical to the aesthetic, and the social implications of archaeological artifacts and their relationships to attention, language, working memory, materiality, and numbers.