How much control do you have over your own actions? If your brain controls your mind, who controls your brain?
Many leading neuroscientists argue that since physical laws govern our brains, physical laws therefore control our behaviour and our conscious selves. Free will is meaningless, they claim.
Not so, argues renowned brain researcher Michael Gazzaniga, who elucidates how the mind ´constrains´ the brain just as cars are constrained by the traffic they create. Writing with what Steven Pinker calls "his trademark wit and lack of pretension," Gazzaniga ranges across neuroscience, psychology and ethics to show why we shouldn´t blame our brains for our behaviour. Even given the latest insights in the physical processes of the mind, he explains, we are responsible agents who should be held accountable for our actions because responsibility exists through our interactions rather than inside our brains.
An extraordinary book, combining a light touch with profound implications, Who´s in Charge? is a lasting contribution from one of the leading thinkers of our time.
"This exciting, stimulating, and sometimes even funny book challenges us to think in new ways about that most mysterious part of us-the part that makes us think we´re us." Alan Alda
"Big questions are Gazzaniga´s stock in trade." New York Times
"Written by one of the broadest thinkers in psychology, Who´s in Charge? is an intellectual feast."
Jonathan Haidt, author of The Happiness Hypothesis and The Righteous Mind
Michael Gazzaniga is one of the world´s leading neuroscientists, and a Professor of Psychology at UC Santa Barbara. He is also the Director of the Summer Institute in Cognitive Neuroscience, President of the Cognitive Neuroscience Institute, and is a member of the President´s Council on Bioethics.