The History of the Human Brain as Revealed by True Stories of Trauma, Madness, and Recovery
For centuries, scientists had only one way to study the brain: wait for misfortune to strike - strokes, seizures, infections, lobotomies, horrendous accidents, phantom limbs, Siamese twins - and see how the victims changed afterwards. In many cases their survival was miraculous, and observers marvelled at the transformations that took place when different parts of the brain were destroyed. Parents suddenly couldn't recognise their children. Pillars of the community became pathological liars and paedophiles. Some people couldn't speak but could still sing. Others couldn't read but could write. The stories of these people laid the foundations of modern neuroscience and, century by century, key cases taught scientists what every last region of the brain did. With lucid explanations and incisive wit, Sam Kean explores the brain's secret passageways and recounts the forgotten tales of the ordinary individuals whose struggles, resilience and deep humanity made neuroscience possible.
Sam Kean lebt als Journalist und Autor in Washington, D.C. Seine Artikel und Reportagen erscheinen vor allem im New York Times Magazine sowie in den Zeitschriften 'Mental Floss', 'The New Scientist' und im 'Science Magazine', bei dem er zurzeit als Reporter arbeitet. 2009 wurde er von der amerikanischen National Association of Science Writers als bester Wissenschaftsautor unter dreißig ausgezeichnet.