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Architecture, memes and minds
Author: Chris Abel

While there is widespread agreement across disciplines that the identities of individuals, groups and places are significantly interrelated, there are equally divergent views as to the nature and origins of those relationships. The first part of the book highlights that the prime importance of the human body in spatial cognition and human perception generally. In stressing the fundamental role of the body as the medium of all personal experience, the concept of the self that emerges thus far retains a strong unitary core. An alternative theory of extended minds which retains the integrity of individual human agents while embracing the extension of personal powers by external devices is also discussed. The second part looks at the scope of inquiry to take in the wider impact of technology on human evolution and the extended self. Selected writings from some of Stiegler's prominent followers and critics were also examined for what they contribute to our understanding of Stiegler's ideas and their possible further applications. He and his followers continue to fall back upon neo-Darwinian concepts and terminologies in elaborating their ideas. Theories of emergence and self-production, or autopoiesis, are investigated as promising alternatives to orthodox evolutionary theory. The subject of design, function of memes, impacts of the coevolution of humankind and technology on the human mind and the self are some other concepts discussed. The third part of the book focuses talk about cognitive roots of classification and combinativity, the relations between form and content, and vernacular architecture.

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Chris Abel

Massimo Piattelli-Palmarini claim does not explain the evolution of organic life, let alone, as Timothy Taylor also argues, how humanity’s unique powers of technology to change and dominate the natural environment might have evolved. Theories of emergence and self-production, or autopoiesis as it is also called, were investigated in the same chapter as promising alternatives to orthodox evolutionary theory, proffering a concept of ‘natural drift’ in place of natural selection. The chapter concluded with a critical examination of applications of autopoiesis to human

in The extended self
Chris Abel

traits could be acquired during the lifetime of an organism and passed on to the next generation, thus breaching the basic law of natural selection, which lays down that favorable variations evolve only by a process of elimination of the weaker species. In other words, unless a species is already possessed of such traits, as a result of either previous selection or random mutations, those traits will not be carried forth. Rejected as heresy by neo-Darwinists, Lamarck’s theory is being taken increasingly seriously by critics of orthodox evolutionary theory, if mostly at

in The extended self