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The Evolution of Imagination

Chicago: University of Chicago Press (2017)

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  1. Imagination: A New Foundation for the Science of Mind.Stephen T. Asma - 2022 - Biological Theory 1:1-7.
    After a long hiatus, psychology and philosophy are returning to formal study of imagination. While excellent work is being done in the current environment, this article argues for a stronger thesis than usually adopted. Imagination is not just a peripheral feature of cognition or a domain for aesthetic research. It is instead the core operating system or cognitive capacity for humans and has epistemic and therapeutic functions that ground all our sense-making activities. A sketch of imagination as embodied cognition is (...)
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  • Creative Motor Actions As Emerging from Movement Variability.Dominic Orth, John van der Kamp, Daniel Memmert & Geert J. P. Savelsbergh - 2017 - Frontiers in Psychology 8.
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  • Affect, Belief, and the Arts.Rami Gabriel - 2021 - Frontiers in Psychology 2.
    The cultural project is a therapeutic melding of emotion, symbols, and knowledge. In this paper, I describe how spiritual emotions engendered through encounters in imaginative culture enable fixation of metaphysical beliefs. Evolved affective systems are domesticated through the social practices of imaginative culture so as to adapt people to live in culturally defined cooperative groups. Conditioning, as well as tertiary-level cognitive capacities such as symbols and language are enlisted to bond groups through the imaginative formats of myth and participatory ritual. (...)
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  • Music and the Evolution of Embodied Cognition.Stephen Asma - forthcoming - In M. Clasen J. Carroll (ed.), Evolutionary Perspectives on Imaginative Culture. pp. pp 163-181.
    Music is a universal human activity. Its evolution and its value as a cognitive resource are starting to come into focus. This chapter endeavors to give readers a clearer sense of the adaptive aspects of music, as well as the underlying cognitive and neural structures. Special attention is given to the important emotional dimensions of music, and an evolutionary argument is made for thinking of music as a prelinguistic embodied form of cognition—a form that is still available to us as (...)
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