Species of Mind
The Philosophy and Biology of Cognitive Ethology
by Marc Bekoff and Collin Allen
Edition: 1st., 1999
Our book has the title it does not only because we want to stress the interdisciplinary nature of the field called cognitive ethology but also
because we want to emphasize how essential are comparative inquiries into animals' minds. Defined briefly, cognitive ethology refers to the comparative, evolutionary, and ecological study of animal thought processes, beliefs, rationality, information processing, and consciousness. Cognitive ethology can trace its beginnings to the writings of Charles Darwin, an anecdotal cognitivist, and some of his contemporaries and disciples. Their approach incorporated appeals to evolutionary theory, interests in mental continuity, concerns with individual and intraspecific variation, interests in the mental worlds of the animals, close associations with natural history, and attempts to learn more about the behavior of animals in conditions that are as close as possible to the environments in which natural selection has occurred or is occurring.