Journey to Elsewhen 01
The View from in Here 02
Outside Looking In 03
In the Blindspot of the Mind's Eye 04
The Hound of Silence 05
The Future Is Now 06
Time Bombs 07
Paradise Glossed 08
Immune to Reality 09
Once Bitten 10
Reporting Live from Tomorrow 11
Journey to Elsewhen
In Chapter 1, I describe how and why the human brain learned to look forward in time. I claim that this ability is uniquely important and uniquely human. But is that true? How do we know that other animals canít think about the future?
The psychologists William Roberts, Thomas Suddendorf, and Janie Busby describe research that attempts to determine whether non-human animals are, in fact, "stuck in time," or whether they (like us) can engage in "mental time travel." These writers conclude that animals cannot think about the long-term future, but the case is far from open-and-shut and their evidence and arguments are provocative.
What could a nonlinguistic animal ever do to prove to us that it can think about the future?
T. Suddendorf, & J. Busby, "Mental time travel in animals?" Trends in Cognitive Sciences 7, 391-396 (2003).
W.A. Roberts, "Are animals stuck in time?" Psychological Bulletin 128: 473-489 (2002).