Forskelle og ligheder i menneskets og chimpansens Theory of Mind

Eva Jensen, Caroline Olesen, Anders Nielsen & Klaus Gregersen

Studenteropgave: Semesterprojekt


This report will try to answer the question: ”What is distinct about the human Theory of Mind compared to the Theory of Mind of humans closest relative – the chimpanzee? How can this difference be explained evolutionary?” The report takes a theoretical approach to this question in which it describes and discusses the work of several theorists who have dealt with areas regarding this question. These include Richard Wellman, who has done extensive research about the development of Theory of Mind in human children but also theorists who have done experimental studies of chimpanzees like Michael Tomasello, Daniel Povinelli and Andrew Whiten and Richard Byrne. The two latter have a more anecdotal approach to the problem and different methodological perspectives on observation versus experiment is also discussed. The report concludes that, although there are many different answers to the question at hand, none of them has gained enough support in the scientific community to be described as conclusive. The report also concludes that an evolutionary explanation of the proposed distinctions is ill-founded, as there is no consensus of the quality and magnitude of this distinction.

UddannelserPsykologi, (Bachelor/kandidatuddannelse) Bachelor el. kandidat
Udgivelsesdato1 jan. 2006


  • Chimpanzees
  • Evolution
  • Children
  • Theory of Mind