Biology of mind :: course schedule01 Jan 2006
September 5 Course introduction: biology, evolution, brains, and minds.
Sept. 7 Philosophy of mind, the mind-body problem. Kim, "Mind-body problem, 40 years later"
Sept. 12 Proximate and ultimate causes of mental phenomena. How is mind a phenotype? Mayr, "Cause and effect in biology."
Sept. 14 Adaptationism, exaptations, spandrels, and behavioral
evolution. Gould and Lewontin, "The Spandrels of San Marco..."
Sept. 19 Neurons, building nervous systems, vertebrate brains. Northcutt, "Understanding vertebrate brain evolution".
Sept. 21 Mammalian brain specializations and genetics.
Sept. 26 Mammalian social groups and social behaviors.
Sept. 28 Culture and communication in mammals, focusing on primates.
October 3 Primate minds
Oct. 5 Early hominid brain evolution and behavioral evidence
Oct. 10 Toolmaking, archaeology, and the brain
Oct. 12 Evolution of brain size and anatomy in Homo
Oct. 17 Archaeology, Neandertals, MSA, and the Upper Paleolithic
Oct. 19 Symbolic culture, information processing, and intelligence
Oct. 24 Biosemiotics and information theory
Oct. 26 Developmental plasticity, "evo-devo" and the mind
Oct. 31 Learning and the Baldwin effect
November 2 Emotions and action
Nov. 7 Language development, pidgins and creoles
Nov. 9 Evolution of language
Nov. 14 Language, consciousness, and cognition
Nov. 16 Art and perception
Nov. 21 Sleep, dreams, and consciousness
Nov. 23 No class, Thanksgiving break
Nov. 28 Altered states
Nov. 30 Animal consciousness
December 5 Cognition and culture
Dec. 7 The aging mind
Dec. 12 Artificial intelligence, cybernetics, and minds
Dec. 14 Last day of class. Student choice lecture.