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psychology
science
The Primal Teen: What the New Discoveries About the Teenage Brain Tell Us about Our Kids
 
 
Author
Barbara Strauch.
Publisher Anchor  
Format paperback
ISBN 9780385721608
Pages/Publication Date 242/2004
Daedalus Item Code 38738
List Price: $15.95
Sale Price: $10.95
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For anyone who has ever puzzled over the mysterious and often infuriating behavior of a teenager, New York Times medical science and health editor Barbara Strauch—herself the mother of teens—gives us a groundbreaking look at the teenage brain. The scientific community has largely held that the growing pains of adolescence are primarily psychological; far from it, reports Strauch, who reveals the physical nature of the transformation. The brain itself goes through changes during adolescence that are as dramatic and crucial as those that take place in the first two years of life. With these new findings in hand, Strauch explores common challenges—why teens go from articulate and mature one day to morose and unreachable the next, and why they engage in risky behavior—and considers strategies to help manage these formative and often difficult years.

"Strauch, the mother of two teenagers, sees the irony in a book about the teenage brain. Indeed, she grants that many may contend that the phrase 'teenage brain' is a kind of oxymoron. But in recent years, she has seen reports of studies on teenage brain development whose claims seem preposterous. Although scientists had long believed that the brain was fully developed before puberty, they were now asserting that this was incorrect. The human brain, they said, is still very much in a critical growth period throughout adolescence. Indeed, key areas of the brain, such as those that help the teenager to do the right thing and decipher complex nuances of emotion, are among the last to reach a stable, grown-up state. Throw ubiquitous raging hormones into the mix, and it is little wonder that adolescence is so thorny. Strauch's well-researched book explains studies that were impossible without such advanced technology as the MRI, in clear, compassionate layperson's language. May become a parents' must-read."—Booklist

 
 
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