This thesis is a study of different interpretations of cultural modernity in the southern African Middle Stone Age. It is studied how different behavioural interpretations affect the current dispute over cultural modernity. Through discourse analysis five case studies are examined, and their connection to specific material interpretations are demonstrated. Further, the characteristics of the case studies, and their specific arguments, are discussed in the full scope of the current dispute. This is to demonstrate that different standards of definition and different explanatory models applied by different discourses are the potential basis of the dispute. There is a focus on demonstrating how discussions and arguments within the dispute often do not follow archaeological chains of inferences, and how interpretations generate different results according to the standpoint of the researcher(s). Different interpretative standards are demonstrated to result in different behaviour observed in the archaeological material, and cultural modernity changes characteristics and patterns as a result.