(Image: Eric Michael Johnson/The New York Times)

Humans are materialistic by nature, but we have an odd relationship with the things we own. Possessions enrich our lives but they also come at a cost, both environmental and psychological.

In these articles, we take stock of our ambivalent relationship with material goods, size up the things that a modern human actually needs, consider the ways possessions define us and ponder the future of ownership. First, we look back at the evolution of our instinct for stuff.

Our stuff

Our stuff

Our stuff

Our stuff

Advertisement

GALLERY

The first things humans owned

How did humans evolve to be so materialistic? We've dug into the archaeological record for the earliest examples of possessions
Read more

READER SURVEY

BRAIN & MIND

Art: an impressive new festival ushers in the End Times

Having scared the life out of us, the north of England's new media art...
Call-of-Duty-Black-Ops-4---Black-Ops-House---Final

New Call of Duty trials no-helmet immersion – using superblack paint

More often associated with artistic experiments and the innards of sa...