The Tale of the Dueling Neurosurgeons: And Other True Stories of Trauma, Madness, Affliction, and Recovery That Reveal the Surprising History of the Human Brain
The author of the bestseller The Disappearing Spoon reveals the secret inner workings of the brain through strange but true stories. Early studies of the human brain used a simple method: wait for misfortune to strike -- strokes, seizures, infectious diseases, horrendous accidents -- and see how... show more
The author of the bestseller The Disappearing Spoon reveals the secret inner workings of the brain through strange but true stories.
Early studies of the human brain used a simple method: wait for misfortune to strike -- strokes, seizures, infectious diseases, horrendous accidents -- and see how victims coped. In many cases their survival was miraculous, if puzzling. Observers were amazed by the transformations that took place when different parts of the brain were destroyed, altering victims' personalities. Parents suddenly couldn't recognize their own children. Pillars of the community became pathological liars. Some people couldn't speak but could still sing.
In The Tale of the Dueling Neurosurgeons, Sam Kean travels through time with stories of neurological curiosities: phantom limbs, Siamese twin brains, viruses that eat patients' memories, blind people who see through their tongues. He weaves these narratives together with prose that makes the pages fly by, to create a story of discovery that reaches back to the 1500s and the high-profile jousting accident that inspired this book's title.* With the lucid, masterful explanations and razor-sharp wit his fans have come to expect, Kean explores the brain's secret passageways and recounts the forgotten tales of the ordinary people whose struggles, resilience, and deep humanity made neuroscience possible.
Publish date: 2014-07-01
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Pages no: 400
Edition language: English
This is going to be short, because I never really bother to take notes while listening to audiobooks, and I finished this audiobook almost three weeks ago. I had to look up nearly all of the names used in this review.This book used specific examples and case studies of individuals with brain injurie...
Most of us have that friend, the one that tells great stories. Not the tall-tale kind of stories. This friend can sit down with a beer of wine after work and tell you all about their day and make it entertaining and interesting, even if you don't really understand what they do. Imagine this frien...
When I went to Town Hall last month to hear a lecture on scientifically important case studies of brain damage, I had no idea that the speaker would be the author of The Disappearing Spoon and The Violinist's Thumb, two of my recent favorite pop-science books. It was a pleasant surprise not only to...
So first of all, let me brag: I solved all the rebuses at the beginning of the chapters. Woohoo! It's a fun, almost Dateline-like approach to the history of famously weird cases and neuroscientists. Kean takes delight in surprising the reader with the juicy details. I'd recommend this to readers of ...