Rita Carter is a medical journalist who writes extremely well. Her ability to grasp and communicate the most fascinating and intriguing aspects of the human brain brings her subject to life. Rita uses case studies of real people that are easy and fun to read, while at the same time presenting a thorough explanation of the scientific information and terms.
A couple of gems:
- In the 1930s-1940s, Egas Moniz pioneered the brain operation known as the leucotomy (which later evolved into the more radical lobotomy) to relieve symptons such as depression, schizophrenia and mania. Post-op, patients became quiet and friendly. However, it didn't always cure aggression: Moniz's career was brought to an abrupt end when he was shot by one of his own lobotomized patients.
- Alexithymia is a condition where a person feels emotion but cannot express it through facial expressions and voice tone. People who have this condition might say, in quite a neutral tone: "I am very angry." Then, aware that the statement has some short-coming, they might add: "and I mean it".
I run courses about thinking skills for business (e.g. Mind Mapping, memory and speed-reading) and have found that this book gives me excellent background knowledge to back-up what I teach. I use stories and snippets of information from the book to help to emphasise what I am teaching. A great book if you are interested in knowing more about the human brain.