Pointing Behaviors in Apes and Human Infants: A Balanced Interpretation

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80 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This article presents a tentatively "balanced" view (i.e., midway between lean and rich interpretations) of pointing behavior in infants and apes, based upon the notion of intentional reading of behavior without simultaneous attribution of unobservable mental states. This can account for the complexity of infant pointing without attributing multilayered mindreading to infants. It can also account for ape pointing, which shares some of the complexities of infant pointing, but departs from it in other respects, notably in its range of motives and its focus upon the regulation of executive behavior. The article explores some explanations for these similarities and differences and calls for a new look at human infant communication unbiased by adult communication models.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)729-734
Number of pages6
JournalChild Development
Volume78
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - May 2007

Keywords

  • PAN-TROGLODYTES
  • FOLLOW GAZE
  • COMMUNICATION
  • CHIMPANZEES
  • MONKEYS

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