Welcome to the Protolang 6 website!
The 6th edition of the Protolang conference series will take place in Lisbon, Portugal from 9 to 12 September, 2019.
Protolang 6 is organized by the Applied Evolutionary Epistemology Lab and the Primate Cognition Research Group of the Center for Philosophy of Science of the Faculty of Science of the University of Lisbon; the William James Center for Research of the University Institute of Psychological, Social and Life Sciences (Instituto Universitário de Ciências Psicológicas, Sociais e da Vida); the Católica Research Center for Psychological, Family and Social Well-Being of the Catholic University of Lisbon (Universidade Católica Portuguesa); and the Portuguese Association for Archaeological Investigation (APIA - Associação Portuguesa de Investigação Arqueológica).
Protolang 6 is additionally sponsored by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation; the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology; FCiências.ID, the Association for the Investigation and Development of the Sciences of the Faculty of Science of the University of Lisbon; SEAC - the European Society for Astronomy in Culture; and the Philosophy of Formal Sciences, Epistemology and Methodology division of the Center for Philosophy of Science.
The Protolang conference series creates an interdisciplinary platform for scholarly discussion on the origins of symbolic communication distinctive of human beings.
The thematic focus of Protolang is on delineating the genetic, anatomical, neuro-cognitive, socio-cultural, semiotic, symbolic and ecological requirements for evolving (proto)language. Sign use, tools, cooperative breeding, pointing, vocalisation, intersubjectivity, bodily mimesis, planning and navigation are among many examples of such possible factors through which hominins have gained a degree of specificity that is not found in other forms of animal communication and cognition.
We aim at identifying the proximate and ultimate causes as well as the mechanisms by which these requirements evolved; evaluating the methodologies, research tools and simulation techniques; and enabling extended and vigorous exchange of ideas across disciplinary borders.