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Publisher's Summary

A philosopher dons a wet suit and journeys into the depths of consciousness.
Peter Godfrey-Smith is a leading philosopher of science. He is also a scuba diver whose underwater videos of warring octopuses have attracted wide notice. In this audiobook he brings his parallel careers together to tell a bold new story of how nature became aware of itself.
Mammals and birds are widely seen as the smartest creatures on earth. But one other branch of the tree of life has also sprouted surprising intelligence: the cephalopods, consisting of the squid, the cuttlefish, and above all the octopus. New research shows that these marvellous creatures display remarkable gifts.
What does it mean that intelligence on Earth has evolved not once but twice? And that the mind of the octopus is nonetheless so different from our own? Combining science and philosophy with firsthand accounts of his cephalopod encounters, Godfrey-Smith shows how primitive organisms bobbing in the ocean began sending signals to each other and how these early forms of communication gave rise to the advanced nervous systems that permit cephalopods to change colours and human beings to speak.
By tracing the problem of consciousness back to its roots and comparing the human brain to its most alien and perhaps most remarkable animal relative, Godfrey-Smith's Other Minds sheds new light on one of our most abiding mysteries.
©2017 Peter Godfrey-Smith (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
3 out of 5 stars
By Al on 03-27-17

A Cephalopod Love Story

Some quite interesting info in parts of the text. Generally too speculative and wishy washy to receive a higher score. A philosopher's work of science rather than a scientist's work of science. Comes across as someone playing at being Edward O. Wilson out of an emphatuation with octopi but lacking the expertise to pull it off.

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Customer Reviews

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5 out of 5 stars
By Amazon Customer on 03-12-18

stunning look at the evolution of thinking...

loved every word of it. great subject lovingly narrated. For any one interested in thought, neuroscience and potentilly for bionics/robotics some great ideas to traverse andcombine. Why? all great structures and strategies are first invented in nature - if it's not broken..? So here is the fundemental patterning of thought through evolution. A demonstration of thought patterning in animals up to and including human minds. Interested to know where and who runs with these ideas and grows them forward in diffrent ways, especially in robotics...thanks to both Peters for bringing this to life

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By William D. Dunsmuir on 05-14-18

Mind blowing and very very enjoyable

Great account of evolution, consciousness and aging Great account of evolution, consciousness and agony Great account of evolution, consciousness and aging

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Dominic on 03-12-18

Fascinating, informative, and thought provoking.

An wonderful window into the lives of cephalopods, and a fascinating study of intelligence itself.

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5 out of 5 stars
By Amazon Customer on 06-17-17

Literary science at its pinnacle

Fantastic performance reading a stunning book.
Godfrey-Smith shows his passion for the philosophy, psychology, and biology of the Cephalopods whilst communicating cutting edge science.

It is great to see communication of this content done in such an academic, yet accessible way. Very enjoyable.

Highly recommended

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