The Emergence of Social Cognition in Three Young Chimpanzees. Monographs of the Society for Research in Child Development - Product Image

The Emergence of Social Cognition in Three Young Chimpanzees. Monographs of the Society for Research in Child Development

  • ID: 2248976
  • Book
  • 168 Pages
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd
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ThisMonograph examines a series of ten studies conducted on the social–cognitive abilities of three young chimpanzees, ages one to four years. In the studies, all previously conducted with human infants, showed the chimpanzees abilities to understand and imitate the goal–directed actions of others, but not their "rational" choices. Each exhibited the ability to understand the visual perception of others, but not the precise focus of their attention. There was no evidence of any ability to reverse roles with a partner in a collaborative interaction, to comprehend the communicative comprehensions behind a pointing gesture, or to engage in genuine joint attention with others. These results suggest that the ontogeny of human social cognition comprises two relatively distinct trajectories: one for understanding intentional action and perception, common to all apes, and another for sharing psychological states with others in collaborative acts involving joint intentions and attentions, unique to the human species.
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Abstract vii.

I. Introduction 1.

II. The Emergence of Social Cognition: A Longitudinal Study 29.

III. Understanding Intentional Action 46.

IV. Understanding Perception and Attention 73.

V. Joint Intentions and Attention 92.

VI. General Discussion 107.

References 123.

Acknowledgements 132.

Commentary– Social Engagement and Understanding in Chimpanzees and Humans.

R. Peter Hobson 133.

Contributors 153.

Statement of Editorial Policy 154

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Michael Tomasello (Ph.D., 1980, Psychology, University of Georgia) taught

at Emory University and worked at Yerkes Primate Center from 1980 to

1998. Since 1998, he is Co–Director at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary

Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany. Research interests focus on

processes of social cognition, social learning, and communication and language

in human children and great apes. Books include Primate Cognition

(w/J. Call, Oxford University Press, 1997), The Cultural Origins of Human

Cognition (Harvard University Press, 1999), and Constructing a Language: A

Usage–Based Theory of Language Acquisition (Harvard University Press, 2003).

Malinda Carpenter (Ph.D., 1995, Psychology, Emory University) currently
is a member of the scientific staff of the Department of Developmental and
Comparative Psychology at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology.
Her research interests include imitation and other types of
social learning, infants understanding of intentions and other mental states,
and joint attention and other early social–cognitive skills. She has worked
with typically developing infants and young children, young children with
autism, and apes.

R. Peter Hobson (Ph.D., 1989, FRCPsych, CPsychol) is Tavistock Professor
of Developmental Psychopathology in the University of London. He is an
experimental psychologist and psychiatrist (and psychoanalyst), trained at
Cambridge University and the Maudsley Hospital, London, and now at the
Tavistock Clinic, London and the Institute of Child Health, University College,
London. His primary research interest is the contribution of social
relations to early cognitive as well as social development. His principal fields
of study are early childhood autism, congenital blindness, mother infant
relations, and adult borderline personality disorder. His first book was
entitled Autism and the development of mind (Erlbaum, 1993), and his second
more accessible and wide–ranging book is called The Cradle of Thought
(Oxford University Press, 2004).

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