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Journal article

Cephalopod consciousness: Behavioural evidence

Mather J ...see all

Consciousness and Cognition, vol. 17, issue 1 (2008) pp. 37-48

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Abstract

Behavioural evidence suggests that cephalopod molluscs may have a form of primary consciousness. First, the linkage of brain to behaviour seen in lateralization, sleep and through a developmental context is similar to that of mammals and birds. Second, cephalopods, especially octopuses, are heavily dependent on learning in response to both visual and tactile cues, and may have domain generality and form simple concepts. Third, these animals are aware of their position, both within themselves and in larger space, including having a working memory of foraging areas in the recent past. Thus if using a 'global workspace' which evaluates memory input and focuses attention is the criterion, cephalopods appear to have primary consciousness. ?? 2006 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Behaviour
  • Cephalopod molluscs
  • Consciousness

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Authors

  • Jennifer A. Mather

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