Other Minds: The Octopus and the Evolution of Intelligent Life, by Peter Godfrey-Smith
What if intelligent life on Earth evolved not once, but twice? The octopus is the closest we will come to meeting an intelligent alien. What can we learn from the encounter?
In Other Minds, Peter Godfrey-Smith tells a bold new story of how nature became aware of itself - a story that largely occurs in the ocean, where animals first appeared.
Tracking the mind's fitful development from unruly clumps of seaborne cells to the first evolved nervous systems in ancient relatives of jellyfish, he explores the incredible evolutionary journey of the cephalopods - a journey completely independent from the route that mammals and birds would later take.
By tracing the question of inner life back to its roots and comparing human beings with our most remarkable animal relatives, Godfrey-Smith casts crucial new light on the octopus mind - and on our own.