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  1. added 2020-09-21
    The Cultural Evolution of Mind-Modelling.Richard Moore - forthcoming - Synthese 1.
    I argue that uniquely human forms of ‘Theory of Mind’ (or ‘ToM’) are a product of cultural evolution. Specifically, propositional attitude psychology is a linguistically constructed folk model of the human mind, invented by our ancestors for a range of tasks and refined over successive generations of users. The construction of these folk models gave humans new tools for thinking and reasoning about mental states—and so imbued us with abilities not shared by non-linguistic species. I also argue that uniquely human (...)
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  2. added 2020-08-28
    Vicarious Representation: A New Theory of Social Cognition.Bence Nanay - 2020 - Cognition 205:104451.
    Theory of mind, the attribution of mental states to others is one form of social cognition. The aim of this paper is to highlight the importance of another, much simpler, form of social cognition, which I call vicarious representation. Vicarious representation is the attribution of other-centered properties to objects. This mental capacity is different from, and much simpler than, theory of mind as it does not imply the understanding (or representation) of the mental (or even perceptual) states of another agents. (...)
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  3. added 2020-07-23
    Chimpanzee Normativity: Evidence and Objections.Simon Fitzpatrick - 2020 - Biology and Philosophy 35 (4):1-28.
    This paper considers the question of whether chimpanzees possess at least a primitive sense of normativity: i.e., some ability to internalize and enforce social norms—rules governing appropriate and inappropriate behaviour—within their social groups, and to make evaluations of others’ behaviour in light of such norms. A number of scientists and philosophers have argued that such a sense of normativity does exist in chimpanzees and in several other non-human primate and mammalian species. However, the dominant view in the scientific and philosophical (...)
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  4. added 2020-07-01
    Tactful Animals: How the Study of Touch Can Inform the Animal Morality Debate.Susana Monsó & Birte Wrage - forthcoming - Philosophical Psychology.
    In this paper, we argue that scientists working on the animal morality debate have been operating with a narrow view of morality that prematurely limits the variety of moral practices that animals may be capable of. We show how this bias can be partially corrected by paying more attention to the touch behaviours of animals. We argue that a careful examination of the ways in which animals engage in and navigate touch interactions can shed new light on current debates on (...)
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  5. added 2020-06-28
    Primate Social Cognition and the Core Human Knowledge Concept.John Turri - 2018 - In Masaharu Mizumoto, Stephen Stich & Eric McCready (eds.), Epistemology for the rest of the world: linguistic and cultural diversity and epistemology. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press. pp. 279-290.
    I review recent work from armchair and cross-cultural epistemology on whether humans possess a knowledge concept as part of a universal “folk epistemology.” The work from armchair epistemology fails because it mischaracterizes ordinary knowledge judgments. The work from cross-cultural epistemology provides some defeasible evidence for a universal folk epistemology. I argue that recent findings from comparative psychology establish that humans possess a species-typical knowledge concept. More specifically, recent work shows that knowledge attributions are a central part of primate social cognition, (...)
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  6. added 2020-04-23
    What Does It Mean to Be Human, and Not Animal? Examining Montaigne’s Literary Persuasiveness in “Man is No Better Than the Animals”.Rory Collins - 2018 - Sloth: A Journal of Emerging Voices in Human-Animal Studies 4 (1).
    Michel de Montaigne famously argued in “Man is No Better Than the Animals” that humans and non-human animals cannot be dichotomized based on language or reasoning abilities, among other characteristics. This article examines a selection of writing features at play in the text and discusses how successfully they convey Montaigne’s claims. Throughout, I argue that Montaigne presents a superficially convincing case for doubting a categorical distinction between humans and animals on linguistic and rational grounds through the use of rhetorical questions, (...)
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  7. added 2019-05-20
    Chimpanzee Theory of Mind: Looking in All the Wrong Places?Kristin Andrews - 2005 - Mind and Language 20 (5):521-536.
    : I respond to an argument presented by Daniel Povinelli and Jennifer Vonk that the current generation of experiments on chimpanzee theory of mind cannot decide whether chimpanzees have the ability to reason about mental states. I argue that Povinelli and Vonk's proposed experiment is subject to their own criticisms and that there should be a more radical shift away from experiments that ask subjects to predict behavior. Further, I argue that Povinelli and Vonk's theoretical commitments should lead them to (...)
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  8. added 2019-05-13
    The Semantic Problem(s) with Research on Animal Mind‐Reading.Cameron Buckner - 2014 - Mind and Language 29 (5):566-589.
    Philosophers and cognitive scientists have worried that research on animal mind-reading faces a ‘logical problem’: the difficulty of experimentally determining whether animals represent mental states (e.g. seeing) or merely the observable evidence (e.g. line-of-gaze) for those mental states. The most impressive attempt to confront this problem has been mounted recently by Robert Lurz. However, Lurz' approach faces its own logical problem, revealing this challenge to be a special case of the more general problem of distal content. Moreover, participants in this (...)
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