Function, goals and intention: children’s teleological reasoning about objects

  title={Function, goals and intention: children’s teleological reasoning about objects},
  author={Deborah Kelemen},
  journal={Trends in Cognitive Sciences},
  • Deborah Kelemen
  • Published 1999
  • Psychology, Medicine
  • Trends in Cognitive Sciences
  • A fundamental aspect of adult thought is the 'teleological' tendency to assume that objects exist for a purpose. When seeing an unfamiliar artifact or strange anatomical part on an animal, the first question an adult will usually ask is 'what's that for?' - a query that assumes that the object can be teleologically explained in terms of its function. Current debate focuses on the origin and scope of teleological thought, and its role in children's emerging theories of the biological world. The… CONTINUE READING
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