Encyclopedia of Sciences and Religions

2013 Edition
| Editors: Anne L. C. Runehov, Lluis Oviedo

Upper Paleolithic

  • Matt Rosano
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-8265-8_200106

A period of time beginning about 35,000 years before present when increasingly sophisticated stone tools, complex social systems and settlement patterns, cave art, and other abstract, symbolic artifacts emerge in the archeological record in Europe. This period is often cited as a “cultural revolution” marking the beginning of modern thinking. Recent work questions the extent to which modern behavior emerged suddenly with the Upper Paleolithic as increasing evidence of modern behavior continues to accrue in the pre-Upper Paleolithic African archeological record. However, the quantity and, to some degree, quality of UP artifacts associated with modern cognitive abilities (e.g., symbolism) continue to stand as significant.

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Psychology DepartmentSoutheastern Louisiana UniversityHammondUSA