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Animal Minds

3.92  ·  Rating Details  ·  59 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews
In 1945, Donald Griffin was one of the codiscoverers of echolocation by bats. In the 1980s he became a leader of cognitive ethnology--the study of animals' thinking behavior--"forging a path where others fear to tread or cannot see a way," in the words of Gerald Durrell. Animal Minds is Griffin's most strongly argued summary of the evidence for cognition from every corner ...more
Paperback, 320 pages
Published July 1st 1994 by University Of Chicago Press (first published 1992)
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Vasha7
May 29, 2011 Vasha7 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Revised edition. An argument in favor of the idea that consciousness in some form may be present throughout the animal kingdom.

As I read this book, I found myself very frustrated by it. The one huge problem that permeates it is the refusal to come to grips, even provisionally, with what is consciousness in the first place. To be sure, this is an issue no one has settled yet. But Griffin writes in accordance with this quote from Francis Crick: "Everyone has a rough idea of what is meant by consci
...more
Deb Stransky
Mar 03, 2016 Deb Stransky rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Written in 1992--a little out-dated. I have read more recent books re: this topic and they referred to this author/behaviorist so I wanted see his works. Liked the book a lot. Actually thought animals had minds and could think---monkeys using stones to open up nuts, animals using various vocals to warn others of what kind of danger is approaching, etc.
Lucy
Jun 09, 2010 Lucy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book was really interesting and held my attention about 3/4 of the way through and then got repetitive and boring. I couldn't finish it. I'm hoping to pick it up again one of these days but right now I can't handle the dry research info. It's about animal consciousness and I loved the parts of the book talking about some of the amazing stories of animals doing things unexplained by anything other than thinking conscious thoughts but got bored later with the more theoretical and specific par ...more
Catherine Smith
Jun 10, 2008 Catherine Smith rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
this book touched base alot on the animal mind and the very strong connection between their intelleigence and their behavior. this book opened my eyes to considering behavior as an important variable when thinking about the intellectual ability and capacity of an animal. After reading this book i realized there was alot more to the animal mind than i had originally had thought. there is alot about animal emotions linked to an animal's behavior and the link and effect one has on another.
Thalia
Apr 30, 2010 Thalia rated it really liked it
Shelves: biology
Don Griffin is a gentle man and inquisitive scientist, who, I believe, tried to explore the notion of animal cognition through naturalistic observations during a period of time where being called anthropomorphic was a fate worse than being stripped of tenure, for some. This is a book of tales about animal behavior that lead to questions about animal cognition. Griffin does not necessarily have the answers (and no-one does), but it is thought-provoking.
Timothy
Apr 02, 2008 Timothy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An interesting book that discussed the various cognitive ability of animals. From consciousness to intelligence, this book gathers information on variousresearches that has been done on animals. He usse by famous examples of animals such as Alex the Gray African parrot. it is a wonderful book that summaries the current development of animal intelligence and emotions. Worth reading.
Andrew
Jan 08, 2008 Andrew rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of the first books to openly challenge what for years had been a dogmatic, deeply entrenched idea in cognitive science: that humans are the only animals whose mental experiences can be classified as 'consciousness'. Griffin put out this revised, updated edition of the original book just before he died, and it's a great read for anyone interested in animal consciousness.
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Donald Redfield Griffin was a member of the National Academy of Sciences and considered the founder of the modern study of animal thinking and consciousness known as "cognitive ethology." He made his mark early in his career by helping to discover how bats navigate, and coined the term "echolocation" to describe the phenomenon.

"An emeritus professor of animal behavior at Rockefeller University, Dr
...more
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