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Squeezing Minds From StonesCognitive Archaeology and the Evolution of the Human Mind$
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Karenleigh A. Overmann and Frederick L. Coolidge

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780190854614

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190854614.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 16 January 2022

A Simian View of the Oldowan

A Simian View of the Oldowan

Reconstructing the Evolutionary Origins of Human Technology

Chapter:
(p.13) 1 A Simian View of the Oldowan
Source:
Squeezing Minds From Stones
Author(s):

William C. McGrew

Tiago Falótico

Michael D. Gumert

Eduardo B. Ottoni

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190854614.003.0002

Findings from field primatology show that three living primate genera—ape (Pan), Old World monkey (Macaca), and New World monkey (Sapajus)—use elementary lithic technology to obtain and process food in nature. All three taxa use stone tools, producing enduring artifacts with distinctive archaeological signatures. In a comparison we show that each taxon has its own suite of tools, both organic and inorganic. All use percussion, but there are differences in the number and type of other tools in each taxon. Our assessment also allows for point-by-point comparisons with the early toolkits of extinct hominins, and here we compare to the Oldowan. This broader comparison shows that modeling the evolutionary origins of human material culture continues to advance. Wynn’s “ape adaptive grade” must now be expanded to a more inclusive “simian adaptive grade,” as monkeys too show convergent features with percussive stone technology.

Keywords:   capuchin, chimpanzee, macaque, subsistence technology, lithics, primate archaeology, tool use, extractive foraging, Oldowan, material culture

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