The origin of the human mind: A speculation on the emergence of language and human consciousness

Acta Biotheoretica 36 (3):129-77 (1987)
The study of human evolution has attracted scientists of various disciplines, judging by the attendance of the conferences devoted to it, and by the publications concerned. In the course of years I became amazed about the seeming absence of a synthesis of the available information. This article presents an attempt to combine some results of the various publications.The study of human evolution has become particularly focussed on the emergence of language and human consciousness with respect to the social behaviour and mental capacities of our closest relatives: the apes. Social relations imply communication, and mentation underlies the ability to communicate. The more it becomes apparent that the social behaviour of the apes resembles that of man in many respects, the greater the danger that typically, and perhaps even uniquely, human traits are ascribed to anthropoids. Anthropomorphic descriptions of animal behaviour tend to prevent a clear view on animal mentality
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