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Idiot Brain : What Your Head Is Really Up to
by Dean Burnett


Overview -

It's happened to all of us at some point. You walk into the kitchen, or flip open your laptop, or stride confidently up to a lectern, filled with purpose--and suddenly haven't the foggiest idea what you're doing. Welcome to your idiot brain.

Yes, it is an absolute marvel in some respects--the seat of our consciousness, the pinnacle (so far) of evolutionary progress, and the engine of all human experience--but your brain is also messy, fallible, and about 50,000 years out-of-date.  Read more...


 
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    Idiot Brain (Audio MP3 CD)
    Published: 2016-10-25
    Publisher: Audible Studios on Brilliance
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More About Idiot Brain by Dean Burnett
 
 
 
Overview

It's happened to all of us at some point. You walk into the kitchen, or flip open your laptop, or stride confidently up to a lectern, filled with purpose--and suddenly haven't the foggiest idea what you're doing. Welcome to your idiot brain.

Yes, it is an absolute marvel in some respects--the seat of our consciousness, the pinnacle (so far) of evolutionary progress, and the engine of all human experience--but your brain is also messy, fallible, and about 50,000 years out-of-date. We cling to superstitions, remember faces but not names, miss things sitting right in front of us, and lie awake at night while our brains replay our greatest fears on an endless loop.

Yet all of this, believe it or not, is the sign of a well-meaning brain doing its best to keep you alive and healthy. In Idiot Brain, neuroscientist Dean Burnett celebrates blind spots, blackouts, insomnia, and all the other downright laughable things our minds do to us, while also exposing the many mistakes we've made in our quest to understand how our brains actually work. Expertly researched and entertainingly written, this book is for everyone who has wondered why their brain appears to be sabotaging their life, and what on earth it is really up to.


 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780393253788
  • ISBN-10: 0393253783
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
  • Publish Date: July 2016
  • Page Count: 336


Related Categories

Books > Medical > Neuroscience
Books > Science > Cognitive Science
Books > Psychology > Cognitive Neuroscience & Cognitive Neuropsychology

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2016-05-30
  • Reviewer: Staff

British neuroscientist Burnett, author of the Guardian blog Brain Flapping, packs an incredible amount of information into an accessible package with this breezy, charming collection of pop neuroscience musings on “how the human brain does its own thing despite everything the modern world can throw at it.” As the title suggests, Burnett highlights the dysfunctional results that occur when evolutionarily sensible systems engage with contexts that hominin ancestors would never have experienced, such as the motion sickness caused by the brain reading the mismatch between seeing a landscape move and the body feeling still, or the creation of conspiracy theories via the brain’s tendency toward pattern matching. Burnett also addresses many basics of human behavior—including anxiety, attention, memory, personality, and intelligence—with clear references to both classic and current studies in psychology and biology, while keeping a critical eye on the limits of studies and their possible misapplication. He shares a teasing love for the quirks of human behavior and adopts an appropriately serious tone when discussing actual mental disorders. Burnett’s smart, likable, self-referential, and very approachable personal voice permeates the text; readers will learn a lot from him, and will also just plain enjoy his work. Agent: Chris Wellbelove, Greene & Heaton (U.K.). (July)

 
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