Numbers and time: The role of materiality in numerical cognition

Author(s): Karenleigh Overmann

Year: 2015


Numerical elaboration and the extension of numbers to non-tangible domains such as time have been linked to cultural complexity in several studies. However, the reasons for this phenomenon remain insufficiently explored. In the present analysis, Material Engagement Theory, an emerging perspective in cognitive archaeology, provides a new perspective from which to reinterpret the cultural nexus in which quantification and timekeeping develop. These insights are then applied to representative Neolithic, Upper Palaeolithic, and Middle Stone Age artifacts used for quantification.

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Numbers and time: The role of materiality in numerical cognition. Karenleigh Overmann. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 395519)