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Study Shows Autistic Traits Behind Revolution in Ice Age Art

The ability to focus on detail, a common trait among people with autism, allowed realistic art to flourish 30,000 years ago during the ice age, according to researchers. Ice age ancestors have created exceptionally realistic art including the extremely accurate depictions of bears, bison, horses, and lions.

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Mammoth Cave National Park preserves the cave system and a part of the Green River valley and hilly country of south central Kentucky. This is the world's longest cave system, with more than 365 miles explored. Image: Wikimedia Commons

The ability to focus on detail, a common trait among people with autism, allowed realistic art to flourish 30,000 years ago during the ice age, according to researchers.

Ice age ancestors have created exceptionally realistic art including the extremely accurate depictions of bears, bison, horses and lions.

Autistic Child lighting a candle
Autistic Child lighting a candle, pixabay

While many have argued that psychotropic drugs were behind the detailed illustrations, the new study argued instead that individuals with “detail focus” — a trait linked to autism, kicked off an artistic movement that led to the proliferation of realistic cave drawings across Europe.

“Detail focus is what determines whether you can draw realistically; you need it in order to be a talented realistic artist. This trait is found very commonly in people with autism and rarely occurs in people without it,” said lead author Penny Spikins from Britain’s University of York.

“We looked at the evidence from studies attempting to identify a link between artistic talent and drug use and found that drugs can only serve to disinhibit individuals with a pre-existing ability. The idea that people with a high degree of detail focus, many of which may have had autism, set a trend for extreme realism in ice age art is a more convincing explanation,” Spikins added.

The research adds to a growing body of evidence that people with autistic traits played an important role in human evolution.

Art Therapy for Autistic Children
Art Therapy for Autistic Children, pixabay

“Individuals with this trait — both those who would be diagnosed with autism in the modern day and those that wouldn’t — likely played an important part in human evolution and survival as we colonized Europe,” Spikins said.

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Besides, contributing to early culture, people with the attention to detail would also have had the focus to create complex tools from materials such as bone, rock and wood, the study showed.

“These skills became increasingly important in enabling us to adapt to the harsh environments we encountered in Europe,” Spikins noted. (IANS)

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Gurgaon Literature Festival Celebrates its Second Edition at Cyber Hub

The event was conducted with great pomp and show as it witnessed the coming in of enthusiastic crowd who had a great inclination for art and literature

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Literature
The event was conducted with great pomp and show as it witnessed the coming in of enthusiastic crowd who had a great inclination for art and Literature.

Gurgaon Literature Festival, the flagship literary event on art and culture rolled out its second edition from 16th to 17th November 2019 at Amphi Theatre & Aditya Birla Arena in DLF Cyber Hub. In its second edition, this renowned literary conclave brought together hundreds of giants from all around India. Mental health, depression, addiction in art and literature were the recurring topics and overall theme of the event to create awareness about mental health problems. The chief guest of the event was Mohammad Kaif and DGP Haryana Manoj Yadav.

The series of events encompassed book launch which was followed by expert panel discussion leading to the award ceremony. The book launch event was carried forward by Manoj Yadav, Haryana DGP at 1 pm. Among other books, Daggers of Treason by Niraj Shrivastav secured the esteemed opportunity to be launched at the Gurgaon Literature Festival. Prior to the event, the DGP threw light on the thin line connecting the working environment of police and mental health associated with it.

Literature
Gurgaon Literature Festival, the flagship literary event on art and culture rolled out its second edition from 16th to 17th November 2019 at Amphi Theatre & Aditya Birla Arena in DLF Cyber Hub.

Followed by an expert panel discussion that took place at 5 pm and The Session on Is mythology actually history? Arjun Raj Gaind, Niraj Srivastav, Antar and Sutapa Basu were among the speakers. Both of the days the GLF witnessed crowd from all across the NCR and other parts of the nation.

Literature
The event was conducted with great pomp and show as it witnessed the coming in of enthusiastic crowd who had a great inclination for art and Literature, Awards were also Distributed.

After the panel discussion, an award ceremony was conducted at 6 pm dissipating a token of appreciation to all the deserving candidates where Niraj Srivastav won the Best Historical Fiction award for his book Daggers of Treason. Daggers of Treason is a historical fiction novel, based on the life and reign of emperor Khurram Shahjahan. One of the four-book series titled ‘The Curse of the Mughal Series.’

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The event was conducted with great pomp and show as it witnessed the coming in of enthusiastic crowd who had a great inclination for art and literature. People who attended the event were greatly inspired by the plethora of perspective and consciousness a cultural event like this could instill in oneself.