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The Question, version 0.1

Many animals including scrub jays \citep{Clayton:2007fh}, ravens \citep{bugnyar:2016_ravens}, goats \citep{kaminski:2006_goats}, dogs \citep{kaminski:2009_domestic}, ringtailed lemurs \citep{sandel:2011_evidence}, monkeys \citep{burkart:2007_understanding, hattori:2009_tufted} and chimpanzees \citep{melis:2006_chimpanzees,karg:2015_chimpanzees} reliably vary their actions in ways that are appropriate given facts about another’s mental states. What could underpin such abilities to track others’ mental states?

tracking vs representing mental states

Contrast {representing} a mental state with {tracking} one.
For you to \emph{track} someone’s mental state (such as a belief that there is food behind that rock) is for there to be a process in you which nonaccidentally depends in some way on whether she has that mental state.
Representing mental states is one way, but not the only way, of tracking them. In principle it is possible to track mental states without representing them. For example, it is possible, within limits, to track what another visually represents by representing her line of sight only. More sophisticated illustrations of how you could in principle track mental states without representing them abound \citep[e.g.][pp.~571ff]{buckner:2014_semantic}. What many experiments actually measure is whether certain subjects can track mental states: the question is whether changes in what another sees, believes or desires are reflected in subjects’ choices of route, caching behaviours, or anticipatory looking (say). It is surely possible to infer what is represented by observing what is tracked. But such inferences are never merely logical.
Example: toxicity / smell

What do
human infants, nonhuman great ape adults or adult scrub-jays
reason about, or represent,
that enables them,
within limits,
to track others’ perceptions, knowledge, beliefs and other propositional attitudes?

The standard debate

-- Is it mental states?

What could make others’ mental states intelligible (or identifiable) to a chimpanzee, infant or scrub-jab?

-- Or only behaviours?

What could make others’ behaviours intelligible (or identifiable) to a chimpanzee, infant or scrub-jab?