NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ847606
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Jul
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0010-0277
Core Knowledge and Its Limits: The Domain of Food
Shutts, Kristin; Condry, Kirsten F.; Santos, Laurie R.; Spelke, Elizabeth S.
Cognition, v112 n1 p120-140 Jul 2009
Adults, preschool children, and nonhuman primates detect and categorize food objects according to substance information, conveyed primarily by color and texture. In contrast, they perceive and categorize artifacts primarily by shape and rigidity. The present experiments investigated the origins of this distinction. Using a looking time procedure, Experiment 1 extended previous findings that rhesus macaques ("Macaca mulatta") generalize learning about novel food objects by color over changes in shape. Six additional experiments then investigated whether human infants show the same signature patterns of perception and generalization. Nine-month-old infants failed to detect food objects in accord with their intrinsic properties, in contrast to rhesus monkeys tested in previous research with identical displays. Eight-month-old infants did not privilege substance information over other features when categorizing foods, even though they detected and remembered this information. Moreover, infants showed the same property generalization patterns when presented with foods and tools. The category-specific patterns of perception and categorization shown by human adults, children, and adult monkeys therefore were not found in human infants, providing evidence for limits to infants' domains of knowledge. (Contains 7 figures.)
Elsevier. 6277 Sea Harbor Drive, Orlando, FL 32887-4800. Tel: 877-839-7126; Tel: 407-345-4020; Fax: 407-363-1354; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A