An explanation of animal behaviour
The paper discusses the methodological criterion, proposed by K. Chodasewicz, for saying when mentalistic notions are indispensable in explanations of animal behaviour. The thesis of the paper is that neither this criterion, nor any criterion of the sort, would ever manage to clear up issues in this matter conclusively. This is because the very notion of an explanation varies between levels of explanation and it is arguable that at higher levels of explanation a suitable notion of explanation cannot be defined save by reference to a mentalistic notion of purpose. An ambitious, but eventually unsuccessful, attempt at defining non-mentalistic notion of purpose by A. Gecow is then discussed, and a conclusion is drawn the explanation of which is a sort of transcendental category of our cognition, in the sense P. Strawson elaborated for his subject/predicate distinction: it is something that conditions our whole way of thinking about the world and that’s why we feel it to be non-contingent. We cannot just switch off the mentalistic component of it, or else it ceases to be a satisfactory explanation.