Larissa Mendoza Straffon, Ph.D.


2020 – present

Before joining the Cognitive Psychology Unit, Larissa was Lecturer at the Leiden University Centre for the Arts in Society. She holds a PhD from the Faculty of Humanities at Leiden University, a MA in Palaeolithic archaeology and Human Origins, and a Licentiate degree in archaeology.


Larissa is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Cognitive Psychology Unit of Leiden University and is affiliated with the Centre for Early Sapiens Behaviour and the Faculty of Psychology at the University of Bergen. Her main interests are cognitive archaeology and the evolutionary interplay between the human mind, culture, and behaviour. She is PI of the project ‘Visual Signs as Cognitive Tools: Phylogeny and Ontogeny’, supported by a grant from the John Templeton Foundation and hosted by CoPAN. This project studies the material production of early visual signs in relation to the development of symbolic cognition and aesthetic behaviour over evolution and in childhood.



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