from month 10/2008

Cosma Shalizi on Supernatural Horror in Electoral Politics

Some of you may not know Cosma Shalizi, one of the most interesting intellectuals and interdisciplinary scientists of our time. Well, the last post in his blog, Three-Toed Sloth asks an anthropological question about the cultural origin of the demonization in some quarters of the Democratic ...

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Are humans intuitive dualists?

Chinese afterlife (from Hodge's paper) Mitch Hodge has just published an article questioning the hypothesis that human intuitive reasoning about other persons supposes a type of Cartesian mind (or soul)-body substance dualism (see Journal of Cognition and Culture 8, 2008), a hypothesis that ...

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Tasty food for anthropological thought

Picture: Taste buds from Gray's Anatomy The alleged non-existence of universal colours categories provided a textbook illustration for cultural and linguistic relativism until Berlin and Kay’s published their famous Basic color terms: Their universality and evolution (1969), ...

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Encephalon 57

The excellent Mind Hacks presents the 57th Encephalon blog carnival of neuroscience and psychology, featuring cooperative hunting in monkeys, the psychology of hope, some ancient history of the BOLD signal as well as the latest news about it, and many things beside. Enjoy!     ...

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The AHRC Culture & the Mind Project

We view the International Cognition and Culture Institute as complementary to other initiatives that pursue the same general goal, often in a more focused manner and within a limited time frame. We obviously welcome information about such initiatives in our news, including, at this juncture, about ...

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Maori Memories

In last February's issue of Child Development, I found a paper from a team that investigates the problem of childhood memories among the Maoris. It turns out that when you ask them, Maoris produce the earliest childhood memories on record: 2.5 years on average (the average American has 3.5, ...

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(Archive) Position at Harvard Graduate School of Education

Archive: the deadline is passed. INTERNATIONAL EDUCATION The Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE) invites applications for positions in International Education and Development, at the rank of Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, Professor or Lecturer, depending on qualific...

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ToC of the Journal of Cognition and Culture

Here is the table of content of the last issue (Volume 8, Numbers 3-4, 2008 ) of the Journal of Cognition and Culture.         Articles Cultural Differences in Perception: Observations from a Remote Culture         pp. ...

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The origin and evolution of religious prosociality

Norenzayan, A., & Shariff, A. F. (2008). The origin and evolution of religious prosociality. Science, 322, 58:62 We examine empirical evidence for religious prosociality, the hypothesis that religions facilitate costly behaviors that benefit other people. Although sociological surveys ...

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Religion: Bound to Believe?

Boyer, Pascal (2008) Religion: Bound to Believe? Nature vol 455: 1038-39. Is religion a product of our evolution? In the past ten years, the evolutionary and cognitive study of religion has begun to mature. It puts forward new hypotheses and testable predictions. It asks what in the human ...

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Ideas of immanent justice in cognition and culture

How common in cognitive development and how widespread across cultures is the idea of immanent justice, with the good or bad fortune being seen as generally deserved and even as a sign of the moral worth of lucky or unlucky people? A new article by Kristina R. Olson, Yarrow Dunham, Carol S. Dweck, ...

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Picture of the week: enteromancy among the Dorze of Southern Ethiopia

This picture, taken in 1969, shows two Dorze elders discussing how to interpret the entrails of a lamb that had just been slaughtered. The pattern of blood vessels on the entrails represents genealogical relationships and blemishes show which of these relationships (with the living or with ...

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