Download Species of Mind: The Philosophy and Biology of Cognitive by Colin Allen PDF

By Colin Allen

Colin Allen (a thinker) and Marc Bekoff (a cognitive ethologist) procedure their paintings from a viewpoint that considers arguments approximately evolutionary continuity to be as appropriate to the learn of animal minds and brains as they're to comparative experiences of kidneys, stomachs, and hearts. Cognitive ethologists learn the comparative, evolutionary, and ecological features of the psychological phenomena of animals. Philosophy offers cognitive ethology with an analytical foundation for attributing cognition to nonhuman animals and for learning it, and cognitive ethology might help philosophy to provide an explanation for mentality in naturalistic phrases by means of delivering information at the evolution of cognition. This interdiscipinary strategy finds flaws in universal objections to the view that animals have minds.The center of the e-book is that this reciprocal courting among philosophical theories of brain and empirical experiences of animal cognition. All theoretical dialogue is thoroughly tied to case reports, fairly within the parts of antipredatory vigilance and social play, the place there are many issues of touch with philosophical discussions of intentionality and illustration. Allen and Bekoff make particular feedback approximately easy methods to use philosophical theories of intentionality as beginning issues for empirical research of animal minds, and so they pressure the significance of learning animals except nonhuman primates.

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Extra info for Species of Mind: The Philosophy and Biology of Cognitive Ethology

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Griffin, however, wants to go beyond such minimal attributions of consciousness. Building on Natsoulas's (1978) definitions of consciousness, which allow that there are different kinds and degrees, Griffin (1992, p. 10) maintains that many animals experience perceptual consciousness (which "entails memories, anticipations, or thinking about nonexistent objects or events as well as immediate sensory input") and reflective consciousness (an "immediate awareness of one's own thoughts as distinguished from the objects or activities about which one is thinking").

Griffin (1992, p. " He stresses the 34 Chapter 2 importance of continuity in structure and function of nervous systems across diverse taxa in making such claims. He discusses how brain size may be related to cognitive competence; however, he maintains that size is not the most important criterion for an organism's ability to perform complex cognitive tasks, and he (somewhat curiously) argues that flexible cognition may actually compensate for limited neural machinery. This view is hard to reconcile with the naturalistic view that complex cognition is a function of complex neural machinery.

Gee-whiz stories, anecdotes, data from careful observations, and experimental findings are all brought to bear on questions of animal consciousness and animal thinking. Griffin discusses Classical Ethology and Cognitive Ethology 35 how animals find food, how individuals avoid being taken as food, food caching, mate choice, habitat selection, mental maps, language acquisition, artifact construction, deception, and manipulation. By including information from a range of sources, Griffin hopes to continue to develop support for a sophisticated cognitive ethology in which explanations based on appeals to cognition and more reductionistic and behavioristic explanations find a comfortable home.

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