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Animal cognition

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (2010)

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  1. What Frege Asked Alex the Parrot: Inferentialism, Number Concepts, and Animal Cognition.Erik Nelson - 2019 - Philosophical Psychology 33 (2):206-227.
    While there has been significant philosophical debate on whether nonlinguistic animals can possess conceptual capabilities, less time has been devoted to considering 'talking' animals, such as parrots. When they are discussed, their capabilities are often downplayed as mere mimicry. The most explicit philosophical example of this can be seen in Brandom's frequent comparisons of parrots and thermostats. Brandom argues that because parrots (like thermostats) cannot grasp the implicit inferential connections between concepts, their vocal articulations do not actually have any conceptual (...)
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  • Know-How as Competence. A Rylean Responsibilist Account.David Lowenstein - 2017 - Frankfurt am Main: Vittorio Klostermann.
    What does it mean to know how to do something? This book develops a comprehensive account of know-how, a crucial epistemic goal for all who care about getting things right, not only with respect to the facts, but also with respect to practice. It proposes a novel interpretation of the seminal work of Gilbert Ryle, according to which know-how is a competence, a complex ability to do well in an activity in virtue of guidance by an understanding of what it (...)
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  • Philosophical Primatology: Reflections on Theses of Anthropological Difference, the Logic of Anthropomorphism and Anthropodenial, and the Self-Other Category Mistake Within the Scope of Cognitive Primate Research.Hannes Wendler - 2020 - Biological Theory 15 (2):61-82.
    This article investigates the deep-rooted logical structures underlying our thinking about other animals with a particular focus on topics relevant for cognitive primate research. We begin with a philosophical propaedeutic that makes perspicuous how we are to differentiate ontological from epistemological considerations regarding primates, while also accounting for the many perplexities that will undoubtedly be encountered upon applying this difference to concrete phenomena. Following this, we give an account of what is to be understood by the assertion of a thesis (...)
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  • Merleau-Ponty and the Transcendental Problem of Bodily Agency.Rasmus Thybo Jensen - 2013 - In Rasmus Thybo Jensen Dermot Moran (ed.), The Phenomenology of Embodied Subjectivity, Contributions to Phenomenology 71. pp. 43-61.
    I argue that we find the articulation of a problem concerning bodily agency in the early works of the Merleau-Ponty which he explicates as analogous to what he explicitly calls the problem of perception. The problem of perception is the problem of seeing how we can have the object given in person through it perspectival appearances. The problem concerning bodily agency is the problem of seeing how our bodily movements can be the direct manifestation of a person’s intentions in the (...)
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  • Shared Agency Without Shared Intention.Samuel Asarnow - 2020 - Philosophical Quarterly 70 (281):665-688.
    The leading reductive approaches to shared agency model that phenomenon in terms of complexes of individual intentions, understood as plan-laden commitments. Yet not all agents have such intentions, and non-planning agents such as small children and some non-human animals are clearly capable of sophisticated social interactions. But just how robust are their social capacities? Are non-planning agents capable of shared agency? Existing theories of shared agency have little to say about these important questions. I address this lacuna by developing a (...)
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  • Credence: A Belief-First Approach.Andrew Moon & Elizabeth Jackson - 2020 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 50 (5):652–669.
    This paper explains and defends a belief-first view of the relationship between belief and credence. On this view, credences are a species of beliefs, and the degree of credence is determined by the content of what is believed. We begin by developing what we take to be the most plausible belief-first view. Then, we offer several arguments for it. Finally, we show how it can resist objections that have been raised to belief-first views. We conclude that the belief-first view is (...)
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  • Basic Factive Perceptual Reasons.Ian Schnee - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (4):1103-1118.
    Many epistemologists have recently defended views on which all evidence is true or perceptual reasons are facts. On such views a common account of basic perceptual reasons is that the fact that one sees that p is one’s reason for believing that p. I argue that that account is wrong; rather, in the basic case the fact that p itself is one’s reason for believing that p. I show that my proposal is better motivated, solves a fundamental objection that the (...)
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  • Conceptual Analysis and Empirical Observations of Animal Minds.Ricardo Parellada - forthcoming - Philosophia:1-14.
    The relation between conceptual analysis and empirical observations when ascribing or denying concepts and beliefs to non-human animals is not straightforward. In order to reflect on this relation, I focus on two theoretical proposals and one empirical case, the three of which are permanently discussed and considered in the literature on animal cognition. First, I review briefly Davidson’s arguments for denying thought to non-linguistic animals. Second, I review Allen’s criteria for ascribing concepts to creatures capable of correcting their discriminatory powers (...)
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  • Is Attention Both Necessary and Sufficient for Consciousness?Antonios Kaldas - 2019 - Dissertation, Macquarie University
    Is attention both necessary and sufficient for consciousness? Call this central question of this treatise, “Q.” We commonly have the experience of consciously paying attention to something, but is it possible to be conscious of something you are not attending to, or to attend to something of which you are not conscious? Where might we find examples of these? This treatise is a quest to find an answer to Q in two parts. Part I reviews the foundations upon which the (...)
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  • A Practice‐Focused Case for Animal Moral Agency.Dorna Behdadi - 2021 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 38 (2):226-243.
    Considerations of nonhuman animal moral agency typically base their reasoning and (very often negative) verdict on a capacity‐focused approach to moral agency. According to this approach, an entity is a moral agent if it has certain intrapersonal features or capacities, typically in terms of conscious reflection and deliberation. According to a practice‐focused notion of moral agency, however, an entity is a moral agent in virtue of being a participant of a moral responsibility practice (MRP). I argue that a practice‐focused approach (...)
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  • Modals Under Epistemic Tension.Guillermo Del Pinal & Brandon Waldon - 2019 - Natural Language Semantics 27 (2):135-188.
    According to Kratzer’s influential account of epistemic 'must' and 'might', these operators involve quantification over domains of possibilities determined by a modal base and an ordering source. Recently, this account has been challenged by invoking contexts of ‘epistemic tension’: i.e., cases in which an assertion that 'must p' is conjoined with the possibility that 'not p', and cases in which speakers try to downplay a previous assertion that 'must p', after finding out that 'not p'. Epistemic tensions have been invoked (...)
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  • Minimal Mindreading and Animal Cognition.Anna Strasser - 2018 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 95 (4):541-565.
    Human and non-human animals are social beings, both have social interactions. The ability to anticipate behavior of others is a fundamental requirement of social interactions. However, there are several ways of how agents can succeed in this. Two modes of anticipation, namely mindreading and behavior-reading, shape the animal mindreading debate. As a matter of fact, no position has yet convincingly ruled out the other. This paper suggests a strategy of how to argue for a mentalistic interpretation as opposed to a (...)
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  • Animal Consciousness.Rocco J. Gennaro - 2018 - Springer: Encyclopedia of Animal Cognition and Behavior.
    This chapter addresses the extent to which nonhuman animals are conscious. Most important perhaps is what criteria should be used in making such a determination.
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  • On the Proper Domain of Psychological Predicates.Carrie Figdor - 2017 - Synthese 194 (11):4289-4310.
    One question of the bounds of cognition is that of which things have it. A scientifically relevant debate on this question must explain the persistent and selective use of psychological predicates to report findings throughout biology: for example, that neurons prefer, fruit flies and plants decide, and bacteria communicate linguistically. This paper argues that these claims should enjoy default literal interpretation. An epistemic consequence is that these findings can contribute directly to understanding the nature of psychological capacities.
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  • Is Behavioural Flexibility Evidence of Cognitive Complexity? How Evolution Can Inform Comparative Cognition.Irina Mikhalevich, Russell Powell & Corina Logan - 2017 - Interface Focus 7.
    Behavioural flexibility is often treated as the gold standard of evidence for more sophisticated or complex forms of animal cognition, such as planning, metacognition and mindreading. However, the evidential link between behavioural flexibility and complex cognition has not been explicitly or systematically defended. Such a defence is particularly pressing because observed flexible behaviours can frequently be explained by putatively simpler cognitive mechanisms. This leaves complex cognition hypotheses open to ‘deflationary’ challenges that are accorded greater evidential weight precisely because they offer (...)
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  • Telling Stories Without Words.Kristin Andrews - 2009 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 16 (6-8):6-8.
    In this review article of Dan Hutto's bok Folk Psychological Narratives: The Sociocultural Basis of Understanding Reasons, I argue that we can take a functional approach to FP that identifies it with the practice of explaining behaviour -- that is, we can understand folk psychology as having the purpose of explaining behaviour and promoting social cohesion by making others’ behaviour comprehensible, without thinking that this ability must be limited to those with linguistic abilities. One reason for thinking that language must (...)
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  • Beyond Cognition: Philosophical Issues in Autism.Emma Peng Chien - 2017 - Dissertation, University of Alberta
    This dissertation explores philosophical issues in autism and defends a new version of the enactive approach to autism and social cognition. The discussion in this dissertation centres around the question “why do autistics encounter social interaction problems?”, addressing this question in ways that raise broader philosophical issues. Within the philosophy of mind, these include the problem of other minds, the nature of emotions, and narratives and their role in understanding the self. Beyond cognition, such issues are intertwined with questions in (...)
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  • Desacuerdos. Semántica, Pragmática y Existencia.Alfonso Losada - 2015 - Areté. Revista de Filosofía 27 (2):9-28.
    In this article, we defend the existence of disagreements in areas of discourse that involve anagent’s perspective, as the semantic theory known as “Radical Relativism” putsit. In the face of the idea that such disagreements exist and can only be explainedby a radical relativist semantics, contextualist theorists have offered arguments to deny their existence or to provide an explanation of them which does not imply departing from the standard semantic theory. These arguments will be our targetof criticism. We raise the (...)
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  • Mindreading in the Animal Kingdom: Philosophical Controversies.Anna Dutkowska & Zbigniew Wróblewski - 2018 - Roczniki Filozoficzne 66 (3):101-122.
    The central issue in the debate on animal minds is the issue of mindreading. This complicated cognitive ability belongs to the key elements of social cognition — as a form of adapting to specific circumstances connected with living in groups, it enables the reading of the mental states of other individuals, e.g. intentions, desires, and beliefs as well as the adaptation of one’s own behavior to this information. The primary purpose of the article is to present the main philosophical controversies (...)
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  • Moral Vegetarianism.Tyler Doggett - 2018 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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