The Forgetting Machine: Memory, Perception, and the 'Jennifer Aniston Neuron' [EPUB]
16 October 2017, 13:39
2017 | EPUB | ISBN: 9781944648541 | 3.06MB
If we lose our memories, are we still ourselves? Is identity merely a collection of electrical impulses? What separates us from animals, or from computers?
From Plato to Westworld, these questions have fascinated and befuddled philosophers, artists, and scientists for centuries. In The Forgetting Machine, neuroscientist Rodrigo Quian Quiroga explains how the mechanics of memory illuminates these discussions, with implications for everything from understanding Alzheimer's disease to the technology of Artificial Intelligence.
You'll also learn about the research behind what Quian Quiroga coined "Jennifer Aniston Neurons," cells in the human brain that are responsible for representing specific concepts, such as recognizing a certain celebrity's face. The discovery of these neurons opens new windows into the workings of human memory.
In this accessible, fascinating look at the science of remembering, discover how we turn perceptions into memories, how language shapes our experiences, and the crucial role forgetting plays in human recollection. You'll see how electricity, chemistry, and abstraction combine to form something more than the human brain, the human mind. And you'll gain surprising insight into what our brains can tell us about who we are.
The Forgetting Machine takes us on a journey through science and science fiction, philosophy and identity, using what we know about how we remember (and forget) to explore the very roots of what makes us human.
The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump: 27 Psychiatrists and Mental Health Experts Assess a President [EPUB]
10 October 2017, 11:33
2017 | EPUB | ISBN: 9781250179456 | 1.26MB
The consensus view of two dozen psychiatrists and psychologists that Trump is dangerously mentally ill and that he presents a clear and present danger to the nation and our own mental health.
This is not normal.
Since the start of Donald Trump’s presidential run, one question has quietly but urgently permeated the observations of concerned citizens: What is wrong with him? Constrained by the American Psychiatric Association’s “Goldwater rule,” which inhibits mental health professionals from diagnosing public figures they have not personally examined, many of those qualified to answer this question have shied away from discussing the issue at all. The public has thus been left to wonder whether he is mad, bad, or both.
In THE DANGEROUS CASE OF DONALD TRUMP, twenty-seven psychiatrists, psychologists, and other mental health experts argue that, in Mr. Trump’s case, their moral and civic “duty to warn” America supersedes professional neutrality. They then explore Trump’s symptoms and potentially relevant diagnoses to find a complex, if also dangerously mad, man.
Philip Zimbardo and Rosemary Sword, for instance, explain Trump’s impulsivity in terms of “unbridled and extreme present hedonism.” Craig Malkin writes on pathological narcissism and politics as a lethal mix. Gail Sheehy, on a lack of trust that exceeds paranoia. Lance Dodes, on sociopathy. Robert Jay Lifton, on the “malignant normality” that can set in everyday life if psychiatrists do not speak up.
His madness is catching, too. From the trauma people have experienced under the Trump administration to the cult-like characteristics of his followers, he has created unprecedented mental health consequences across our nation and beyond.
It’s not all in our heads. It’s in his.
The Fear Factor: How One Emotion Connects Altruists, Psychopaths, and Everyone In-Between [EPUB]
10 October 2017, 07:20
2017 | EPUB | ISBN: 9781541697195 | 5.66MB
How the brains of psychopaths and heroes show that humans are wired to be good
At fourteen, Amber could boast of killing her guinea pig, threatening to burn down her home, and seducing men in exchange for gifts. She used the tools she had available to get what she wanted, like all children. But unlike other children, she didn't care about the damage she inflicted. A few miles away, Lenny Skutnik cared so much about others that he jumped into an ice-cold river to save a drowning woman. What is responsible for the extremes of generosity and cruelty humans are capable of? By putting psychopathic children and extreme altruists in an fMRI, acclaimed psychologist Abigail Marsh found that the answer lies in how our brain responds to others' fear. While the brain's amygdala makes most of us hardwired for good, its variations can explain heroic and psychopathic behavior.
A path-breaking read, The Fear Factor is essential for anyone seeking to understand the heights and depths of human nature.