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Domain-specificity and theory of mind: evaluating neuropsychological

Summary: Domain-specificity and theory of mind:
evaluating neuropsychological
Ian A. Apperly, Dana Samson and Glyn W. Humphreys
School of Psychology, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham, B15 2TT, UK
Humans' unique aptitude for reasoning about mental
states, known as Theory of Mind (ToM), can help explain
the unique character of human communication and
social interaction. ToM has been studied extensively in
children, but there is no clear account of the cognitive
basis of ToM in adults. Evidence from functional
imaging and neuropsychology is beginning to address
this surprising gap in our understanding, and this
evidence is often thought to favour a domain-specific
or modular architecture for ToM. We present a
systematic approach to this issue for the paradigmatic
case of belief reasoning, and argue that neuropsycholo-
gical data provide no clear evidence for domain-
specificity or modularity. Progress in understanding
ToM requires new tasks that isolate potentially distinct


Source: Apperly, Ian - School of Psychology, University of Birmingham


Collections: Biology and Medicine