Encyclopedia of Animal Cognition and Behavior

Living Edition
| Editors: Jennifer Vonk, Todd Shackelford


Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-47829-6_778-1


The question of animal intelligence has long been of human interest dating back to Plato, Aristotle, and Plotinus’s notion of scala naturae, the natural order of organisms. Later, Romanes, a colleague of Darwin’s, published Animal Intelligence (1882) in which he reported collected anecdotes of animal behavior from pet owners and naturalists which suggested that many animals show intelligent behaviors. Romanes’s approach tends to ask which human abilities are shared by other animals, but it suffers from the flawed logic exemplified by the cartoon depicted in Fig. 1. Given this bias, it is not surprising that animals that are more similar to us in their sensory, motor, and motivation systems are often judged by us to be more intelligent.
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© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of KentuckyLexingtonUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Kenneth Leising
    • 1
  1. 1.Texas Christian UniversityForth WorthUSA