To Understand a Cat: Methodology and Philosophy

To understand a cat: methodology and philosophy rests on the realization that the everyday behavior of a cat (but other animals too) should be understood through a new approach, namely methodological dualism. It appeals to mechanistic explanation models and to mentalistic explanation models. It puts up the methodological idea that these models have to be combined in one theoretical structure according to the scientific game-rules. This approach shows that specific mentalistic explanations are generated from explanation models or schemes, which meet the demands of the scientific games-rules; and it proposes a new theoretical structure called the multi-explanation theory to generate particular theories, which provide us with efficient explanations for behavioral phenomena. The book delves deep into anthropomorphism, and the complex question of whether a cat has consciousness and free will, and examines the intricate relations of the mental, the computational, and the neurophysiological.(Series A)