I study what makes us human.
My first book, Speaking Our Minds, was reviewed as “The most important and the best book ever written on the evolution of language” and “The best linguistics book I’ve read in 10 years”. See here for details and more reviews.
I’m currently working on a second book, aimed at a broader, more general audience. It’s about the link between mind & culture. How do social, human minds interact to generate & stabilise culture? (Indeed, what is culture, from a natural science point of view?)
I’m based in the Social Mind Center and the Department of Cognitive Science at Central European University, Budapest. I work across disciplines, sitting between and drawing on psychology, anthropology, linguistics, philosophy, & evolutionary biology.
I’ve written short pieces for publications such as Aeon, Scientific American, and The Conversation; and I’ve given public talks for the British Humanist Association, Skeptics In The Pub, Digital Science, and others. My academic articles and research interests concern topics as diverse as bacterial communication, cultural evolution, fine art, great apes, language acquisition, philosophy of biology, and many others.
In my spare time I dance the lindy hop. Avidly.