Human

The Science Behind What Makes Us Unique

By Michael S. Gazzaniga
(Ecco Press, Hardcover, 9780060892883, 447pp.)

Publication Date: June 2008

List Price: $27.99*
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Description

One of the world's leading neuroscientists explores how best to understand the human condition by examining the biological, psychological, and highly social nature of our species within the social context of our lives.

What happened along the evolutionary trail that made humans so unique? In his widely accessible style, Michael Gazzaniga looks to a broad range of studies to pinpoint the change that made us thinking, sentient humans, different from our predecessors.

Neuroscience has been fixated on the life of the psychological self for the past fifty years, focusing on the brain systems underlying language, memory, emotion, and perception. What it has not done is consider the stark reality that most of the time we humans are thinking about social processes, comparing ourselves to and estimating the intentions of others. In Human, Gazzaniga explores a number of related issues, including what makes human brains unique, the importance of language and art in defining the human condition, the nature of human consciousness, and even artificial intelligence.




About the Author
Michael S. Gazzaniga is the director of the SAGE Center for the Study of the Mind at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He is the president of the Cognitive Neuroscience Institute, a member of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, the Institute of Medicine, and the National Academy of Sciences. In addition, he is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and newly elected to serve on its Board of Directors. He is also past president of the Association of Psychological Science and served on the President's Bioethics Council from 2002-2008. The author of many popular science books, including Who's In Charge? (Ecco, 2011), Human (Ecco, 2008), Nature's Mind (Basic, 1992), and Mind Matters (Houghton Mifflin, 1988), he is featured regularly on Public Television and National Public Radio, and his research has been presented on NBC Nightly News and The Today Show. Gazzaniga lives in California with his wife. He has six children.
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