RE: animals and humans (was "Evolution wars")

From: Adrian Teo (
Date: Mon Dec 23 2002 - 00:49:00 EST

  • Next message: George Murphy: "Re: Evolution wars"

    Hello Bob,

            You wrote:
                 I agree that one must guard against the pathetic fallacy, but that
            doesn't mean that we should dismiss any emotion expressed by
    an animal that
            reminds us of human emotions as merely a biological
    predisposition, as if
            our own emotions did not have a biological component. I
    think the argument
            may stem on whether there is a continuum between emotions
    expressed by some
            animals and those expressed by humans. I was not predisposed
    to believe,
            and I have given up believing, that there is a clean break
    between humans
            and other mammalian species in this respect.

            AT: We don't know if animals experience emotions the way we
    do. And even if they do, it is likely to be only the simpler, less
    cognitively involved emotions such as anger, fear, pleasure. Others
    emotions such as guilt and shame, require higher cognitive
    capacities, which may be beyond even higher primates. Bottom line is
    that there is insufficient evidence to conclude that animals have the
    same notions of justice, fairness, love as we do.


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