Dr Cory Stade
Cory came to archaeology via linguistics. Asking herself, “When and how did language evolve in our species?”, she realised the best way to answer this is through Palaeolithic archaeology, which provides a context for the time when language evolved. Her research interests include lithic technology, cognitive archaeology and experimental archaeology.
She began a PhD at Southampton under the supervision of Clive Gamble in 2013. Her thesis, “Lithic Morphological Variability as a Proxy for Palaeolithic Language Ability: A Knapping Training Study Exploring Cultural Transmission, Theory of Mind and Langauge” examined experimentally produced stone tools made by novice knappers who she taught in various ways to mimic transmission by groups with different theory of mind abilities. By connecting different methods of social learning to theory of mind ability, and the linguistic abilities they suggest (such as in modern humans but also non-human animal populations), she proposed a method of discerning linguistic ability from lithic technological complexity during the Palaeolithic, allowing us to read ‘when’ language first appears by looking at the archaeology.
After graduation, Cory started a proofreading and copy editing business specialising in proofreading PhD theses, grant applications and manuscripts before submission (www.cocoproofreading.com). She also continues to create and sell jewellery on Etsy (www.coryographies.etsy.com), including knapped and glazed porcelain stone tool necklaces with fellow CAHO alumnus Christian Hoggard (www.stoneageceramics.etsy.com).
She hopes to begin (one day) writing popular science books about the origins and evolution of language from an archaeological perspective.