Metazoa: Animal Life and the Birth of the Mind

Metazoa: Animal Life and the Birth of the Mind

The scuba-diving philosopher who wrote Other Minds explores the origins of animal consciousness Dip below the ocean?s surface and you are soon confronted by forms of life that could not seem more foreign to our own: sea sponges, soft corals, and serpulid worms, whose rooted bodies, intricate geometry, and flower-like appendages are more reminiscent of plant life or even arc The scuba-diving philosopher who wrote Other Minds explores the origins of animal consciousness Dip below the oc...

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Title:Metazoa: Animal Life and the Birth of the Mind
Author:Peter Godfrey-Smith
Rating:
Genres:Science
ISBN:0374207941
Edition Language:English
Format Type:Hardcover
Number of Pages:352 pages pages

Metazoa: Animal Life and the Birth of the Mind Reviews

  • Martha
    Jan 22, 2021
    I started using my mind when I became older to consider other animals as I swatted, trampled and chewed my way through life. The one armed shrimp seeming to contemplate Godfrey-Smith is one of the most touching scenes I?ve read. And while I struggled to understand some of this - elec...
  • Petra-X Off having adventures
    Nov 14, 2020
    Small update I was reading other reviews, and those who don't like philosophy mixed in with their science don't like it so much. But thinking about consciousness - it's one of those things we know for 100% certain exists but no one knows where or can define exactly what ...
  • Mark
    Jan 27, 2021
    Dr. Godfrey-Smith is an Australian scuba diver who was trained as a philosopher of science and is the author of Other minds about the probable sentience of cephalopods. This book is a discussion of the notion that sentience or consciousness was acquired gradually, i.e. not as an all or...
  • Susan
    Nov 19, 2020
    I so enjoyed Godfrey-Smith's "Other Minds," and was looking for something similar. I was surprised at his Australian accent, having read this book on Audio. I found parts of it, especially the part on Ions and the electrical aspects of mind....somewhat confusing for laym...
  • Carl Safina
    Nov 29, 2020
    One of my newly favorite authors and thinkers returns again to consider what consciousness is and what creates the ability of an entity to experience sensations. We know that much of our brain and body does things "in the dark," directing and carrying out high and complex fun...
  • Pavel
    Feb 08, 2021
    The first and the last chapter are very good and stimulating, though not particularly original (see, e.g. gradualism in Dennett). There are some novel ideas (e.g. experiential profile) that might prove fruitful. The chapters between are entertaining and bring in interesting information...
  • D
    Nov 24, 2020
    A bit superficial and too long. I learned some interesting concepts related to consciousness: experience, subjectivity, agency, sentient etc. And how these applied to various animal species. But no detail, e.g. a more detailed explanation of the role of genetics in evolution. There cer...
  • Steve
    Jan 02, 2021
    A wonderful book! Continues the exploration of consciousness he started in ?Other Minds? by looking at other forms of life. Great combination of biology and philosophy of mind, with lots of reasoning based on evolutionary theory. Also, the author is a great observer of wildlife. Fi...
  • Dan Graser
    Dec 01, 2020
    I was pleasantly surprised by this volume from philosopher Peter Godfrey-Smith in that it brought some welcome clarity to the issue of consciousness and the origin of what we know to be the mind in the natural world. Oftentimes - and I realize how general a remark this is - philosopher...
  • Peter Tillman
    Nov 08, 2020
    Best review of this one I've seen yet, by an actual biologist, who's been a pretty reliable reviewer for me: https://inquisitivebiologist.com/2020... Excerpt: "Compared to Other Minds, Metazoa dives deeper into neurological and philosophical topics: qualia, pain, emoti...
  • Janne Sinkkonen
    Nov 24, 2020
    (Listened, not read, which may affect my impressions.) I have read both "Philosophy of Biology" and "Other Minds" from the author, and like his style, which is non-combative, often searching for a middle way or a synthesis. This book is a bit like Other Minds in ...
  • Lata
    Dec 09, 2020
    The author poses some really interesting questions about cognition by taking us from the development of single-celled creatures all the way to mammals. The author has an engaging style, and makes his material really interesting. He points to fossils and experiments performed with prese...
  • Ben Rogers
    Jan 09, 2021
    I enjoyed this one. Great scientific book. I feel that, although this book was great, I would recommend instead these books instead: The Soul of an Octopus: A Surprising Exploration Into the Wonder of Consciousness Other Minds: The Octopus, the Sea, and the Deep Origins of Co...
  • Gaenor Bagley
    Feb 11, 2021
    This is a follow up to Peter Godfrey-Smith?s book about the development of minds in the Octopus family, Other Minds: The Octopus, the Sea, and the Deep Origins of Consciousness. If you have questions about what do we mean by consciousness and the mind, this is an enlightening book. I...
  • Adam Carter
    Dec 26, 2020
    This book is a collection of interesting ideas and research that have helped the author think about consciousness, personalised using some stories about his scuba diving adventures. Many of the ideas explored were thought provoking. I thought the discussion on whether consciousness can...
  • Dayton
    Jan 19, 2021
    Really fascinating stuff, compelling as natural history and provocative in its suggestions about the origins and development of consciousness. I find many of his arguments about the relation between animal life and sentience as we know it to be at least intuitively appealing, though no...
  • Stephen
    Jan 03, 2021
    Epistemology is one of my many weak points. There were places in this wondrous book that waxed too philosophical for me to follow and I confess got skimmed. The new paleontology, the biology, the neuroscience, the animal behavior sections are moving and eye-opening They are also witty,...
  • Sunshine
    Jan 10, 2021
    I was excited to win this book as a Giveaway because I enjoyed the author's previous exploration of animal consciousness, "Other Minds: The Octopus, the Sea, and the Deep Origins of Consciousness". That book I gave one less star because, for all the amazing insights into...
  • Kathleen
    Dec 26, 2020
    An informative, readable study of the origins of subjective experience in animals. This meeting of philosophy and science is engaging and thought-provoking. ...
  • Justin Kern
    Feb 12, 2021
    This book is terrible. It's an academic who is just wildly speculating about the minds of marine animals. There is no wit or humor, just dry dry speculating. "It seems like" "perhaps" "maybe" This guy is just pulling ideas out of his ass. ...
  • John Rueter
    Dec 14, 2020
    Unfortunately, I am listening to the audio book. There are long sections of elementary biology and evolution that I would otherwise scan. I paused reading until I had more patience, but I plan to go back to it. The premise of different minds having different experiences is fascinating....
  • The Inquisitive Biologist
    Dec 11, 2020
    Author of the bestseller Other Minds, Peter Godfrey-Smith returns to the topic of subjective experience, consciousness and minds, charting the evolution of life's ability to behold itself. Read my full review at https://inquisitivebiologist.com/2020... Author of the bestseller ...
  • Carroll Nelson Davis
    Feb 06, 2021
    Godfrey-Smith leads the reader through a speculative and stimulating account of the evolution of sentience and mind, drawing on natural history, philosophy, and a wide field of other disciplines. At times the reader may feel bewildered at where the discussion is going and why, but the ...
  • Melissa
    Dec 21, 2020
    I found this book fascinating. Consciousness is well within my area of expertise as a psychologist, but the further one advances in her education, the more specialized her focus becomes. Metazoa took me all the way back to the history and systems of psychology. I haven?t considered q...
  • Emily
    Feb 12, 2021
    This book was a really interesting read - definitely not one to pick up after a long day at work. I struggled to wrap my brain around many of the theories presented and moreso the analysis of those theories. For readers of Other Minds, don't expect the same ease of reading and und...
  • WheeldonHS
    Jan 17, 2021
    Firstly, this is a philosophical text and not a scientific text so it is quite light on science and heavy on philosophical speculation. The author uses their interest in marine life to contemplate consciousness and the divide between the physical (tangible) and non-physical (intang...
  • Hannah
    Nov 29, 2020
    An interesting combination of science and philosophy ...
  • Jack Hicks
    Feb 03, 2021
    Metazoa, Animal Life and the Birth of the Mind Peter Godfrey-Smith, 2020 We are all descended from Protozoa, single celled animals that evolved over a period of several billions of years. We evolved from, single celled animals, Prokaryotes like bacteria, without a nucleus, which then...
  • K. Ira
    Jan 01, 2021
    I read this immediately after Other minds. I didn't get the feel of major unnecessary overlap. He attempts to go further along his original concepts of consciousness and the mind and includes various animal life instead of focusing on octopi. After the first book, this one...
  • Travis Rebello
    Dec 20, 2020
    Diving into the waters of the mind once more Metazoa is simply a stunning book. A mix of evocative underwater scenes, evolutionary storytelling, and philosophical exploration, it has got to be one of the most fascinating books I have read. Peter Godfrey-Smith builds here on his best...