Abstract: (from the jacket) Do children have a theory of mind? If they do, at
what age is it acquired? What is the content of the theory, and how does
it differ from that of adults? "The Child's Theory of Mind" integrates the
diverse strands of this rapidly expanding field of study. It charts
children's knowledge about a fundamental topic--the mind--and
characterizes that developing knowledge as a coherent commonsense theory,
strongly advancing the understanding of everyday theories as well as the
commonsense theory of mind.... Wellman presents evidence that children as
young as age three do possess a commonsense theory of mind--that they
grasp the distinction between mental constructs and physical entities and
that they have an understanding of the relationship between individuals'
mental states and their overt actions. He delves in detail into questions
about the nature of adults' commonsense theories of mind and about the
nature of commonsense theories.... Wellman then examines the content of
the three-year-old's theory of mind, the nature of children's notions of
mind before age three, the changes in the theory during subsequent
development from ages three to six, and the young child's conception of
mind in comparison with those of older children and adults.
Children, theories, and the mind: An introduction.
Understanding the basic distinction between mental and physical phenomena.
Young children's understanding of belief.
Commonsense belief-desire psychology.
Young children's belief-desire psychology.
Further clarifications of the theory and the data.
From three to six: From copies to imaginings to interpretations.
From three to six: Other implications.
Maintained by Francis F. Steen, Communication Studies, University of California Los Angeles