The Tale of the Duelling Neurosurgeons: The History of the Human Brain as Revealed by True Stories of Trauma, Madness, and Recovery
For centuries, scientists had only one way to study the brain: wait for misfortune to strike - strokes, seizures, infections, lobotomies, horrendous accidents, phantom limbs, Siamese twins - and see how the victims changed afterwards. In many cases their survival was miraculous, and observers... show more
For centuries, scientists had only one way to study the brain: wait for misfortune to strike - strokes, seizures, infections, lobotomies, horrendous accidents, phantom limbs, Siamese twins - and see how the victims changed afterwards. In many cases their survival was miraculous, and observers marvelled at the transformations that took place when different parts of the brain were destroyed. Parents suddenly couldn't recognise their children. Pillars of the community became pathological liars and paedophiles. Some people couldn't speak but could still sing. Others couldn't read but could write. The stories of these people laid the foundations of modern neuroscience and, century by century, key cases taught scientists what every last region of the brain did. With lucid explanations and incisive wit, Sam Kean explores the brain's secret passageways and recounts the forgotten tales of the ordinary individuals whose struggles, resilience and deep humanity made neuroscience possible.
Publish date: 2015-03-26
Publisher: Black Swan
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 ...