Books  Ecological & Biological Sciences  Animal & General Biology  Animals: Behaviour 

Do Animals Think?

By: Clive D L Wynne

268 pages, 19 b/w photos, 2 illus

Princeton University Press

Paperback | Apr 2006 | #157955 | ISBN: 0691126364
Availability: Usually dispatched within 4 days Details
NHBS Price: £23.99 $31/€27 approx
Hardback | Dec 2004 | #144955 | ISBN: 0691113114
Out of Print Details

About this book

Takes aim at the work of such renowned animal rights advocates as Peter Singer and Jane Goodall for falsely humanizing animals. Far from impoverishing our view of the animal kingdom, however, it underscores how the world is richer for having such a diversity of minds - be they of the animal or human variety.
`Wynne's expert, lucid, sharply argued (and even witty) study provides a wonderful account of what is understood about how animals think and the serious challenges that face scientific study of these fascinating questions. It also offers very reasonable and suggestive thoughts about the place of humans within the rich and complex world of mental achievements and limitations.'Noam Chomsky, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

[An] enjoyably written exploration of recent discoveries of modern animal behavior... Wynne is clearly arguing against the view of animal rights advocates such as Peter Singer and Jane Goodall who ascribe human attributes to animals. But Wynne is no reactionary--he strongly sympathizes with those who wish to improve the treatment of animals... It helps his arguments that Wynne is often as entertaining as he is erudite. Publishers Weekly In this critical account of selected research, Clive Wynne takes aim at over-sentimental anthropomorphism, particularly on the part of animal-rights advocates. He argues that the degree to which animals are like us cannot be the measure of how much they are worthy of our respect and protection... All this material is presented in a clear informal and entertaining way, enlivened by historical asides. -- Sara J. Shettleworth Nature Wynne has a pleasant writing style and a knack for engaging the reader... [H]is book offers many insightful descriptions of animal behavior... He seems to take delight in animals, and possesses great knowledge about them, yet he prefers them at arm's length. The constant message is that animals are not people. -- Frans B.M. de Waal Natural History Wynne's new book provides a timely corrective to many myths about animal minds, without detracting from the wonders of the natural world. -- Nicola S. Clayton Science [Wynne] is a lively writer with a congenial sense of humor, an obvious passion for truly understanding the minds of animals, and a sincere desire to come to terms with what all this means for the larger philosophical and ethical questions about the place of man and animals in the world. -- Stephen Budiansky Cerebrum: The Dana Forum on Brain Science A fun read ... packed with clever experiments, intriguing anecdotes, and a delight in the diversity of animal behavior. -- Sy Montgomery Discover Readers will delight in this insightful, well-referenced book. Choice Lucid and witty... Mr. Wynne makes a compelling case against true rationality in animals, but he resists the temptation to reduce animals to mere 'machines,' as Descartes famously did; he is too seized with wonder at the marvels of animal behavior to adopt so barren a model. In the end, Mr. Wynne prefers to accept our fellow animals for what they are, as they are. -- Eric Ormsby New York Sun An intelligent and balanced discussion of our attitudes towards other species and what (if anything) animals think... A refreshingly skeptical and pugnacious investigation. -- P.D. Smith The Guardian


1 What Are Animals? 1 2 The Secrets of the Honeybee Machine 13 3 How Noble in Reason 46 4 What Is It Like to Be a Bat? 84 5 Talk to Me 106 6 The Pigeon That Saved a Battalion 139 7 Monkey See, Monkey Do? 162 8 Dolphins Divine 195 9 Sandwiches to Go 222 References 245 Acknowledgments 261 Index 263

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Clive D.L.Wynne is Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of Florida. He is the author of "Animal Cognition: The Mental Lives of Animals"

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