Why did a brain like yours evolve

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A note for The Half-Lesson, "Your Brain Is Not for Thinking," in Seven and a Half Lessons About the Brain by Lisa Feldman Barrett.
Some context from page 2‌‌ is:

Why did a brain like yours evolve?

The appendix adds:

Statements like “Your brain is for this” and “Your brain evolved to do that” are examples of teleology.

For a quick discussion of teleology, see this reference.[1]

For details more on "contextual, relational cognition," the type of teleology used in the Half-Lesson, see this reference.[2]


  1. Mayr, Ernst. 2004. What Makes Biology Unique? Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press.
  2. Ojalehto, Bethany, Sandra R. Waxman, and Douglas L. Medin. 2013. "Teleological Reasoning About Nature: Intentional Design or Relational Perspectives?" Trends in Cognitive Sciences 17 (4): 166–171.