The difficulty with validating whether animals have minds is that we cannot share experiences with animals, communication is difficult. Though this may be changing. Experts in symbolic language with chimps and apes are able to communicate with each other in sign language. ‘Experiments with chimps Koko and Washoe and gorilla Kenzi have shown that they are able to invent new words, construct abstract phrases and express their feelings using American Sign Language or computer-based symbolic language.’ This is hard scientific evidence proving that these primates do have intelligence and a mind nearly like our own, though the extent is far from being displayed.
In primates such as chimpanzees it is imperative to look at their culture to understand their intelligence. Culture in this circumstance means a specific set of behaviors obtained through learning in a population/species. Chimpanzee’s intelligence is quite unique how they interact with their environment and use it to their benefit just like humans. They have the ability to overcome the obstacles of everyday life through learning and the ability to use tools to create a better quality of life. The complexity of their intellect is different from any other animal ever seen.
These scenes made me concerned about how inhumane people are towards research chimpanzees. Even with a sense of ethic, I believe animals should deserve respect and consideration. However, there were some scenes during that movie that also made me think about how animals such as chimpanzees were an essential part of human lives. Chimpanzees in the film were experimented on to find a cure for people with Alzheimer’s disease. This demonstrated that chimpanzees themselves suffered to promote the welfare of humans.
Jane’s scientific discoveries have laid the foundation for all future primate studies. Her interest was studying the chimpanzees to gain insight into humans’ evolutionary past. Her observations have changed the way researchers and everyday individuals view chimpanzees. Jane had observed chimpanzees making and using tools for different reasons, such as using straws for extracting termites from nests. Her studies have showed many similarities between humans and chimpanzees, this discovery had amazed the world.
Together, they published a paper titled “Does the Chimpanzee Have a Theory of Mind?” “In it, they relied primarily on a series of experiments...” which tested chimpanzees to determine rather or not they could “infer human goals in observed situations” (Fowler 187). The results offered an astounding yes. This confirms that chimpanzees, in some capacity, have the ability to empathize for others. In addition to chimpanzees ability to have an emotional connection with others, they also have the ability to communicate through sign language. Washoe was “the
Many people would like to believe that we are vastly superior to chimpanzees, but based on these cases we are very similar to each other. When people discuss infanticide in chimpanzees they often think of them as primitive or incredibly violent, but when they hear of human individuals are committing infanticide, they blame it on different cultures and claim that they are better than that culture. No matter what they believe, infanticide is something that happens throughout the world both in human populations and other primate
The study of non-human primates and dolphins has lead to many profound questions as to the nature of intelligence. And thought the answers provided to date have been disputed, the questions are not any less worth of being asked. But in order to get beyond the disputes, researchers must be willing to shed there antrocentric view of intelligence and accept that it is an trait which can evolve like any other trait. When this is done it may be finally possible to recognize the remarkable abilities that some many people seem to find in animals as evidence of animal intelligence not lesser human intelligence. Internet Sources: http://hcs.harvard.edu/~husn/BRAIN/vol2/Primate.html http://www.pigeon.psy.tufts.edu/psych26/history.htm
For many years, people assumed that humans are significantly different from other species, which made them somewhat superior. However, research on animal behavior, especially our closest relatives, the apes has led to new discoveries that show many similarities between human and animals. Some of these similarities have questioned the uniqueness of humans and have led to debates not only among scientists but in the public as well. Frans de Waal, a renowned primatologist and the author of The Ape and the Sushi Master, is among the scientists that claim animals and humans are quite similar. The main focus of his book is to show that culture is not exclusive to humans.
Blackford’s on the other hand, succeeded in what the author intended to write, to talk about how the autonomy of a child is not affected through genetic modification. Powell’s article would be very useful to other researchers due to its facts, scientific theories, logical appeals, quotes, and sources. Works Cited Powell, Russell, PhD, and Allen Buchanan, PhD. "Journal of Medicine and Philosophy." Breaking Evolution's Chains: The Prospect of Deliberate Genetic Modification in Humans.
While this definition may seem fairly logical, especially because humans seem to be the axiomatic example for this definition, many researchers argues that its anthropocentric nature is too limiting. By placing parameters on intelligence which only humans meet, and lower primates fit to varying degrees, it is inherently impossible to find "intelligence" in any other species. A second problem with this humanist definition of intelligence is that it is based largely on human introspection and the knowledge that we are conscious, rational, linguistic animals(1). Kenneth Marable argues "if the same criterion that are used to rule out non-human intelligence were applied to humans without the benefit of introspection, we would doubt even our own intelligence"(1). One of the first goals of inter-species intelligence studies was to create a quantitative scale to measure the intelligence of animals.