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Species of Mind: The Philosophy and Biology of Cognitive Ethology Paperback – Jul 26 1999

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 231 pages
  • Publisher: A Bradford Book; 1 edition (July 26 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0262511088
  • ISBN-13: 978-0262511087
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 1.5 x 22.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 340 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #834,064 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

Review

No one has ever contemplated what it is like to be a zucchini because zucchinis lack minds. But we certainly have wondered what it is like to be a predatory lion, or an echolocating bat or a brachiating monkey. That is because such animals presumably do have minds. But what kind of minds? Allen and Bekoff morph the disciplines of philosophy and ethology toprovide a lucid analysis of how animals think and what they think about. If you want a fun romp on the wild side of animal minds, read this book.

(Marc Hauser , Associate Professor, Departments of Anthropology and Psychology, Program in Neurosciences, Harvard University)

About the Author

Marc Bekoff is Professor of Environmental, Population, and Organismic Biology at the University of Colorado, Boulder.

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Starting from the concept of biological continuity Allen and Bekoff argue that "lower" animals may be intelligent too. One might distinguish a variety of intelligences including: i. purely reactive (reflex, radical behaviorist, table lookup) learning by evolutionary change only (learning being radically separated from performance system) ii. finite state machines (modifiable memory,
possibly with explicit world model/representation, possibly with
a time sense) iii. cooperative/social (communicative, specialists, language users) iv. conscious (self monitoring and
self modifying, possibly explicit representation of goals, possible utility/value model with possible value change), etc.
Allen and Bekoff note that "'lower' animals can outperform 'higher' animals on some cognitive tasks", what constitutes
superior intelligence depends upon the niche that the animal
occupies, it is not universal. I especially liked the chapter
on consciousness which the authors relate to the capacity to
detect misinformation and illusion.
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Format: Paperback
When I read Species of Mind for the first time it was my introduction to the topic of cognitive ethology and I had no background at all in this area. I wrote a review here indicating that I did not get anything out of it. I would like to retract that. What would have been more accurate would have been that I did not appreciate it because *I* was not prepared for it. I have since read extensively on the topic and have all of Marc Bekoff's books. I now appreciate the book and consider it indispensable. Allen and Bekoff are leading researchers in this field and this book is highly important if you want to get solid current information in cognitive ethology. I HIGHLY recommend this book and retract my previous inaccurate review.
...P>James O'Heare...
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0xa665b354) out of 5 stars 2 reviews
26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa530b5ac) out of 5 stars A great book (and a retraction of previous review) Sept. 1 2002
By James J. O'Heare - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
When I read Species of Mind for the first time it was my introduction to the topic of cognitive ethology and I had no background at all in this area. I wrote a review here indicating that I did not get anything out of it. I would like to retract that. What would have been more accurate would have been that I did not appreciate it because *I* was not prepared for it. I have since read extensively on the topic and have all of Marc Bekoff's books. I now appreciate the book and consider it indispensable. Allen and Bekoff are leading researchers in this field and this book is highly important if you want to get solid current information in cognitive ethology. I HIGHLY recommend this book and retract my previous inaccurate review.
...P>James O'Heare...
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa5312648) out of 5 stars Kinds of Intelligence April 17 2003
By Robert Jones - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Starting from the concept of biological continuity Allen and Bekoff argue that "lower" animals may be intelligent too. One might distinguish a variety of intelligences including: i. purely reactive (reflex, radical behaviorist, table lookup) learning by evolutionary change only (learning being radically separated from performance system) ii. finite state machines (modifiable memory,
possibly with explicit world model/representation, possibly with
a time sense) iii. cooperative/social (communicative, specialists, language users) iv. conscious (self monitoring and
self modifying, possibly explicit representation of goals, possible utility/value model with possible value change), etc.
Allen and Bekoff note that "'lower' animals can outperform 'higher' animals on some cognitive tasks", what constitutes
superior intelligence depends upon the niche that the animal
occupies, it is not universal. I especially liked the chapter
on consciousness which the authors relate to the capacity to
detect misinformation and illusion.


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