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Mindreading AnimalsThe Debate over What Animals Know about Other Minds$
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Robert W. Lurz

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780262016056

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262016056.001.0001

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Epilogue

Epilogue

Chapter:
(p.195) Epilogue
Source:
Mindreading Animals
Author(s):

Robert W. Lurz

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262016056.003.0005

On the basis of the arguments presented in this book, it cannot be determined with certainty whether animals are capable of mindreading or complementary behavior reading. It is also not clear whether animals predict other agents’ behaviors by attributing cognitive states to them, such as seeing, hearing, knowing, and believing. However, there is a way forward to elucidating these issues. Researchers now have the experimental protocols that could help them determine whether animals can attribute such mental states or just the observable grounds associated with them. These protocols put the field of animal social cognition research in a position to answer its strongest methodological challenge—the logical problem.

Keywords:   animals, mindreading, behavior reading, cognitive states, experimental protocols, logical problem, mental states, social cognition

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