book cover

H 245 x W 174 mm

218 pages

Colour illustrations throughout

Published Jun 2024

Archaeopress Archaeology


Paperback: 9781789694994

Digital: 9781789695007

DOI 10.32028/9781789694994

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Archaeological theory; Art; Anthropomorphism; Anthropology; Imagery; Mythology; Material Culture; Religion

Related titles

Anthropomorphism, Anthropogenesis, Cognition

Edited by Dragoş Gheorghiu, Vincent Paladino


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Anthropomorphism could be described as a production of analogies generated by human cognition. It is present in the imaginary, mythologies, religions, and material culture of all ages. This book approaches anthropomorphism from the moment of anthropogenesis, tracing its presence in nature and material culture in prehistory and Antiquity.



Introduction. Anthropomorphism, Anthropogenesis, Cognition – Dragoş Gheorghiu

1. The Strengthening of the Central Nervous System in the Human Lineage and the Emergence of Shamanism – Anne Dambricourt Malassé

2. Did the Vikings Really See Sea-serpents, and Did ‘Peer Gynt’ Meet Trolls? Ancient Evolutionary Brain-benefits – Still Vibrant in our Perception – Torill Christine Lindstrøm

3. Echoes through Time of Myth, Metaphor and Memory – Roberta Robin Dods

4. Images in Rocks as Interplay between Nature and Culture – Luboš Chroustovský

5. Anthropomorphism: In Service to the Rational Mind and Technological Development – Vincent C. Paladino

6. Places with Faces. Figures in a Landscape – Paul Devereux

7. Witness Standing Stones and the Cosmic Order – Gail Higginbottom

8. Rock Incarnations and Materializations at Myrina Kastro: The Figural and the Aniconic – Christina Marangou

9. Anthropomorphism in Southern African Rock Art – Petro Cecilia Keene

10. Stone-Atlantes: Anthropomorphic Metaphors of Force in Pre-Pottery Neolithic Architecture in Mesopotamia – Dragoş Gheorghiu

11. Symbolism and Use of Birch Tree in the Bronze Age – Pavol Jelínek and Lenka Horáková

About the Author

Dragoş Gheorghiu is a historical anthropologist/archaeologist and experimentalist whose studies focus on the process of cognition, material culture, ancient technologies, and iconography. Professor Gheorghiu has edited books on anthropomorphic and zoomorphic figurines, fire in archaeology, fire as an instrument, early ceramic traditions, metaphorical thought, experientiality and imagination in archaeology. During the last two decades he carried out large scale experiments of art and archaeology.

Vincent C. Paladino is a cognitive anthropologist/archaeologist and educator who specializes in the study of audiovisual technologies, cyber environments, and feedback systems, which he terms anthrocyberism. His research focuses on the effect of these modern technologies on human cognition and behavior. His research interests include archaeoacoustics, investigating the role of sound in ancient contexts and its connection to cognitive processes and learning in both historical and contemporary settings.