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May 8, 2024 32 mins

These days, a mention of cyborgs often conjures images from a science fiction future: robot arms and legs, infrared eyes, and other modified humans. However, we don’t need to look into the future to find cyborgs. In many ways, people today are already cyborgs. We are deeply intertwined with technology—from the clothes we wear to the structures we live in. But when did our relationship with technology start? Who was the first cyborg?

These questions take us from the present to the deep past, with host Eshe Lewis joining Cindy Hsin-yee Huang, a Paleolithic archaeologist, on a journey to ponder cyborg anthropology, tool use, and the relationship between our ancient hominin ancestors and their technologies.

Cindy Hsin-yee Huang is a doctoral candidate in the School of Human Evolution and Social Change at Arizona State University and affiliated with the Institute of Human Origins. Cindy is a Paleolithic archeologist, with a focus on stone tools and cultural evolution. Her research, supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, uses stone tools in the archeological record to investigate large-scale patterns of innovation and cultural diffusion during the ancient past. This work helps us understand how technology impacted, facilitated, and reflected human evolution, migration, and social interactions.

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