Symbolic artifacts present a challenge to theories ofneurocognitive processing due to their dual nature: they areboth physical objects and vehicles of social meanings. Whiletheir physical properties can be read of the surface structure,the meaning of symbolic artifacts depends on theirembeddedness in cultural practices. In this study, participantsbuilt models of LEGO bricks to illustrate their understandingof abstract concepts. Subsequently, they were scanned withfMRI while presented to photographs of their own and others’models. When participants attended to the meaning of themodels, we observed activations associated with socialcognition and semantics. In contrast, when attending to thephysical properties, we observed activations related to objectrecognition and manipulation. Furthermore, when contrastingown and others’ models, we found activations in areasassociated with autobiographical memory and agency. Ourfindings support a view of symbolic artifacts as neurocognitive trails of human social interactions.
|Udgiver||Cognitive Science Society|
|Status||Udgivet - 2015|