Numerical Abstraction in Prehistory. A View from Cognitive Archeology = Abstracción numérica en la Prehistoria. Una visión desde la arqueología cognitiva

Ángel Rivera Arrizabalaga


This paper attempts to analyse the origin of numerical abstraction. In his study, a Psychobiological and Social Model (Functional Structuralism) has been used on our cognitive evolution, and causal cognition processes as the main drivers of cognitive and behavioural development. The process takes place over a long historical period, because although it seems that there are antecedents at the end of the Middle Palaeolithic, its main development begins with the beginning of the Upper Palaeolithic, where archaeologically an advanced development of causal cognition related to measurement behaviours is observed. Its subsequent evolution to counting and numbering behaviours would depend on the social, technological and emotional development of Neolithic and Bronze Age societies.

En este trabajo se intenta analizar el origen de la abstracción numérica. En su estudio se ha utilizado un Modelo Psicobiológico y Social (Estructuralismo funcional) sobre nuestra evolución cognitiva y los procesos de cognición causal como motores principales del desarrollo cognitivo y conductual. El proceso se realiza en un amplio periodo histórico, pues aunque parece que existen antecedentes a finales del Paleolítico medio, su principal desarrollo comienza con el inicio del Paleolítico superior, donde arqueológicamente se constata un avanzado desarrollo del cognición causal relacionado con conductas de medición. Su posterior evolución a conductas de contaje y numeración dependería del desarrollo social, tecnológico y emocional de las sociedades del Neolítico y la Edad del Bronce.

Palabras clave

Measure; Count; Numerical abstraction; Psychobiological and Social Model; Causal cognition = Medir; Contar; Abstracción numérica; Modelo Psicobiológico y Social; Cognición causal

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