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psychology
Human: The Science Behind What Makes Us Unique
 
 
Author
Michael S. Gazzaniga.
Publisher Ecco/BOMC  
Format hardcover
Product Dimensions 9.25 x 6.1 x 1.25 inches
ISBN 9780060892883
Pages/Publication Date 447/2008
Daedalus Item Code 21283
This item is not available.
Description
One of the world's leading neuroscientists, Michael Gazzaniga explores how best to understand the human condition by asking what happened along the evolutionary trail that made humans so unique. Neuroscience has been fixated on the life of the psychological self, he notes, focusing on the brain systems underlying language, memory, emotion, and perception. What it has not done is consider the stark reality that most of the time we humans are thinking about social processes, comparing ourselves to and estimating the intentions of others. Gazzaniga considers a number of related issues, including what defines human brains, the importance of language and art, the nature of human consciousness, and even artificial intelligence.

"Gazzaniga, a cognitive neuroscientist at the University of California, Santa Barbara (and one of the inventors of the field), takes us on a lively tour through the latest research on brain evolution."—NYTBR

"Sweeping, erudite and humorous.... If you are looking for one book that gives you a Cook's Tour of the human brain, where it came from and where it is heading, this would be an excellent choice."—Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

"As wide-ranging as it is deep, and as entertaining as it is informative, the latest offering from UC–Santa Barbara neuroscientist Gazzaniga (The Ethical Brain) will please a diverse array of readers. He is adept at aiding even the scientifically unsophisticated to grasp his arguments about what separates humans from other animals. His main premise is that human brains are not only proportionately larger than those of other primates but have a number of distinct structures, which he explores along with evolutionary explanations for their existence. For instance, a direct outgrowth of the size and structure of the human brain, along with their origins in the complexity of human social groups, was the development of language, self-awareness and ethics. (Gazzaniga offers some surprising comments on the evolution of religion and its relation to morals.) Throughout, Gazzaniga addresses the nature of consciousness, and by comparing the intellectual capabilities of a host of animals (chimps, dogs, birds and rats, among others) with those of human babies, children and adults, he shows what we all share as well as what humans alone possess."—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

 
 
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