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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

ignore the psychological and social value of having a continuous focal point for the self of some kind, however fragile its foundations might be, Andy Clark and David Chalmers offer an alternative theory of extended minds which retains the integrity of individual human agents while also embracing the extension of personal powers by external devices – that is, external to the human body. Significantly, while they 56  EXSELF.indb 56 The extended self 30/07/2014 13:39:10 do not elaborate on the idea, they suggest their approach might allow for a concept of the

in The extended self