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Om forfatteren

Michael S. Gazzaniga, one of the premiere doctors of neuroscience, was born on December 12, 1939 in Los Angeles. Educated at Dartmouth College and California Institute of Technology, he has been on the faculty of the Center for Neuroscience, University of California, Davis. His early research vis mere examined the subject of epileptics who had undergone surgery to control seizures. He has also studied Alzheimer's and Parkinson's patients and reveals important findings in books such as Cognitive Neuroscience: The Biology of the Mind. While many of his writings are technical, he also educates and stimulates readers with discussions about the fascinating and mysterious workings of the brain. Books such as The Social Brain and The Mind's Past bring forth new information and theories regarding how the brain functions, interacts, and responds with the body and the environment. (Bowker Author Biography) vis mindre

Værker af Michael S. Gazzaniga

The Mind's Past (1998) 115 eksemplarer
The Integrated Mind (1978) 19 eksemplarer

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Kanonisk navn
Gazzaniga, Michael S.
Juridisk navn
Gazzaniga, Michael S.
Land (til kort)
Santa Barbara, California, USA
Dartmouth College
California Institute of Technology (PhD|1964)
Professor (Psychology, University of California - Santa Barbara)
Director (Law and Neuroscience Project)
LeDoux, Joseph (student)
President's Council on Bioethics
Kort biografi
Michael Gazzaniga is a Professor of Psychology and the Director for the SAGE Center for the Study of Mind at the University of California Santa Barbara. He oversees an extensive and broad research program investigating how the brain enables the mind. Over the course of several decades, a major focus of his research has been an extensive study of patients that have undergone split-brain surgery that have revealed lateralization of functions across the cerebral hemispheres.

In addition to his position in Santa Barbara, Professor Gazzaniga is also the Director of the Summer Institute in Cognitive Neuroscience, and President of the Cognitive Neuroscience Institute.




About half the book is a capsule review of the state of consciousness research presented in more detail in other books (like 'The Consciousness Instinct') which serves as the background for the main thrust of the book which is the judicial and ethical fallout of the conclusion that humans aren't actually 'steering the ship', in the way it is normally assumed. The most extreme form of this argument, that essentially argues that all retributive justice is meaningless and punishment in general serves no purpose, most notably propagated by Sam Harris, is thankfully not the natural conclusion of the book, but rather just presented as a possible option among many.
He did not explore in depth what seemed like an obvious followup to the "people who are told free will does not exist will cheat more" experiments; even if the premise of moral inculpability is true, trying to spread this knowledge or build a justice system based on the proposed conclusions, could have far worse effects. Which kicks the dilemma back to philosophy and asking if we're primarily utilitarians caring about outcomes or if the Truth should be the foremost goal.
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A.Godhelm | 11 andre anmeldelser | Oct 20, 2023 |
Fine memoir by an important neuroscientist with a great sense of humor and humility. A little bit about his work and discoveries, and a pretty fair amount about what a life as a top-level brain scientist is like. I really liked the last few chapters where he sums up the meaning of his work in the context of understanding human consciousness - what has been discovered and how much more is still to be learned.
steve02476 | 5 andre anmeldelser | Jan 3, 2023 |
Wonderful book by a brilliant yet humble scientist. A great conjunction of brain science and philosophy.
steve02476 | 11 andre anmeldelser | Jan 3, 2023 |
Michael S. Gazzaniga is a leading scientist in the field of cognitive neuroscience, having in fact helped to create the field as the study of the brain advanced. In this book, he discusses his life and his research. He did important, even critical, research on split brains (brains where the corpus callosum, the nerve bundle connecting the left and right sides of the brain) was severed--sometimes in accidents, but often intentionally, in cases where epileptic seizures were unmanageably severe and frequent. It was effective enough to be considered justified in very severe cases--especially as it seemed to have no obvious impact on normal functioning.

In fact it did have significant effects, but most early testing wasn't effective at identifying those effects. Gazzaniga was one of the leaders in developing those techniques, identifying the effects, and ultimately, developing a far more sophisticated understanding of how the human brain really works, both when it's intact, and when the corpus callosum is split.

His description of his research is informative, interesting, and often downright joyful. It's really fascinating.

His accounts of his moves back and forth across the country, moving between east and west coast universities and research centers (he created several of those research centers) I have to say I found positively dizzying. In at least one case, he created a new research center, and left for the other coast after just three years. I might be completely wrong, but I do have the impression that this is not typical in academia.

We also learn something of his personal life, his two marriages and several children, his social life, his friendships with comedian Steve Allen, conservative pundit and founder of the National Review William F. Buckley, Jr., and others. Gazzaniga seems proud of having been a member of the "Animal House" fraternity at Dartmouth College, which at minimum tells me he's so much more social and uninhibited than I am that even now that he's 82, I'd probably run screaming in the other direction if I met him--but a lot more people would probably really enjoy meeting him.

All in all, a very interesting book, and the things I find off-putting are likely the very things that other people will find engaging.

I bought this audiobook.
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LisCarey | 5 andre anmeldelser | Dec 19, 2021 |



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