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Discover the true heart of humanity: the brain Your brain shapes your world, but you can also shape your brain. From the God helmet to the No Lie MRI, award-winning journalist Lone Frank embarks on an incredible adventure to the frontiers of neuroscience, revealing how today's top scientists are reinventing human nature, morality, happiness, health, and reality itself. Interlacing bizarre experiments, cutting-edge research, and irreverent interviews, The Neurotourist is an unforgettable tour of the mind-bending revolution underway in the new age of the brain. A critically-acclaimed journalist, science writer, and TV presenter, Lone Frank also holds a PhD in neurobiology and has worked as a research scientist in Denmark and the US. Apart from a particularly ‘cute’ corpus callosum she has an expert’s word that her brain is quite unremarkable. “[A] fascinating exploration of the most intriguing brain experiments so far this century.” The New Scientist
What if you could predict your future – which political party you will vote for, what kind of person you will marry, which disease will end your life, whether your blue mood will fester into something more troubling, even debilitating. Would you want to know? Taking a uniquely intimate and cheeky approach to the personal genomics revolution, internationally acclaimed science writer Lone Frank swabs up her genetic code to explore who any of us are in the days when a catalogue of your full six billion DNA building blocks is available for $10,000 and the local Walgreens offers genetic screening tests to anyone. She challenges the august Nobel Prize winners and the hyperactive business mavericks who are pushing to map and decipher every fetus’s genome within the next decade. She tests the potential to detect diseases early, as well as our capacity to develop chronic anxieties when our DNA is seen as a death sentence. She ponders whether personality, including her own above-average irritability and non-conformity, can really be reduced to biochemistry. And she prods the psychologists who hope to uncover just how much or how little our environment will matter in the new genetic century – a quest made all the more gripping as Frank considers her family’s and her own struggles with depression. At turns compellingly candid and irreverently insightful, Frank provides the first truly personal account of the new science of consumer-led genomics – and to what extent our genes determine our destiny. Lone Frank is the author of The Neurotourist: Postcards from the Edge of Brain Science (ISBN 9781851687961). She holds a PhD in neurobiology and was previously a research scientist working in the biotechnology industry in the United States. An award-winning science journalist and TV documentary presenter, she has written for such publicationsn as Scientific American, Science, and Nature Biotechnology and is a frequent speaker at venues including Harvard Medical School, the Library of Congress, the Royal Society, and TED. Praise for The Neurotourist “A fascinating exploration of the most intriguing brain experiments so far.” New Scientist “Riveting.” Rita Carter, author of Mapping the Mind
Eminent professor and famed neuroscience researcher Dowling researches whether the development of the brain, personality, intelligence, and behavior are more likely to be shaped and affected by environment or genetic coding.
The age of the brain is upon us. The realisation that the fundamental building blocks of our world consist of brains rather than nations, electrons, or even DNA is ushering in a ‘neurocentric’ revolution, challenging how we think about everything from morality to the stock market, and how we view ourselves. Serving as guide and human guinea pig, the author introduces the leading brain researchers whose work is changing our understanding of ethics, religion, and personal happiness, and influencing economics, society, and even the judicial system. This is the first book to document the rise of ‘neurocentrism’: a concept in which the very essence of what it is to be human is located in the brain. While it may seem limiting to reduce humanity to the 1300 grams of tissue between our ears, the emerging truth is that such acceptance will allow us to transcend human nature. Writer, editor, presenter, and public lecturer, Dr Lone Frank has been involved in the study of science and ethics for over ten years.
Aldous Huxley called humankind's basic trend toward spiritual growth the "perennial philosophy." In the view of James Austin, the trend implies a "perennial psychophysiology" -- because awakening, or enlightenment, occurs only when the human brain undergoes substantial changes. What are the peak experiences of enlightenment? How could these states profoundly enhance, and yet simplify, the workings of the brain? Zen and the Brain presents the latest evidence. In this book Zen Buddhism becomes the opening wedge for an extraordinarily wide-ranging exploration of consciousness. In order to understand which brain mechanisms produce Zen states, one needs some understanding of the anatomy, physiology, and chemistry of the brain. Austin, both a neurologist and a Zen practitioner, interweaves the most recent brain research with the personal narrative of his Zen experiences. The science is both inclusive and rigorous; the Zen sections are clear and evocative. Along the way, Austin examines such topics as similar states in other disciplines and religions, sleep and dreams, mental illness, consciousness-altering drugs, and the social consequences of the advanced stage of ongoing enlightenment.
Most of us believe that we are unique and coherent individuals, but are we? The idea of a "self" has existed ever since humans began to live in groups and become sociable. Those who embrace the self as an individual in the West, or a member of the group in the East, feel fulfilled and purposeful. This experience seems incredibly real but a wealth of recent scientific evidence reveals that this notion of the independent, coherent self is an illusion - it is not what it seems. Reality as we perceive it is not something that objectively exists, but something that our brains construct from moment to moment, interpreting, summarizing, and substituting information along the way. Like a science fiction movie, we are living in a matrix that is our mind. In The Self Illusion, Dr. Bruce Hood reveals how the self emerges during childhood and how the architecture of the developing brain enables us to become social animals dependent on each other. He explains that self is the product of our relationships and interactions with others, and it exists only in our brains. The author argues, however, that though the self is an illusion, it is one that humans cannot live without. But things are changing as our technology develops and shapes society. The social bonds and relationships that used to take time and effort to form are now undergoing a revolution as we start to put our self online. Social networking activities such as blogging, Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter threaten to change the way we behave. Social networking is fast becoming socialization on steroids. The speed and ease at which we can form alliances and relationships is outstripping the same selection processes that shaped our self prior to the internet era. This book ventures into unchartered territory to explain how the idea of the self will never be the same again in the online social world.
India: it's a nation of geeks, swots and nerds. Almost one in five of all medical and dental staff in the UK is of Indian origin, and one in six employed scientists with science or engineering doctorates in the US is Asian. By the turn of the millennium, there were even claims that a third of all engineers in Silicon Valley were of Indian origin, with Indians running 750 of its tech companies. At the dawn of this scientific revolution, Geek Nation is a journey to meet the inventors, engineers and young scientists helping to give birth to the world’s next scientific superpower – a nation built not on conquest, oil or minerals, but on the scientific ingenuity of its people. Angela Saini explains how ancient science is giving way to new, and how the technology of the wealthy are passing on to the poor. Delving inside the psyche of India’s science-hungry citizens, she explores the reason why the government of the most religious country on earth has put its faith in science and technology. Through witty first-hand reportage and penetrative analysis, Geek Nation explains what this means for the rest of the world, and how a spiritual nation squares its soul with hard rationality. Full of curious, colourful characters and gripping stories, it describes India through its people – a nation of geeks. curious, colourful characters and gripping stories, it describes India through its people – a nation of geeks.

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