The Idea of the Brain: The Past and Future of Neuroscience (Hardcover)

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9781541646858
A history of what we think we know about the brain.

For thousands of years, thinkers and scientists have tried to understand what the brain does. Yet, despite the astonishing discoveries of science, we still have only the vaguest idea of how the brain works. In The Idea of the Brain, scientist and historian Matthew Cobb traces how our conception of the brain has evolved over the centuries.
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An "elegant", "engrossing" (Carol Tavris, Wall Street Journal) examination of what we think we know about the brain and why -- despite technological advances -- the workings of our most essential organ remain a mystery.


"I cannot recommend this book strongly enough."--Henry Marsh, author of Do No Harm

For thousands of years, thinkers and scientists have tried to understand what the brain does. Yet, despite the astonishing discoveries of science, we still have only the vaguest idea of how the brain works. In The Idea of the Brain, scientist and historian Matthew Cobb traces how our conception of the brain has evolved over the centuries. Although it might seem to be a story of ever-increasing knowledge of biology, Cobb shows how our ideas about the brain have been shaped by each era's most significant technologies. Today we might think the brain is like a supercomputer. In the past, it has been compared to a telegraph, a telephone exchange, or some kind of hydraulic system. What will we think the brain is like tomorrow, when new technology arises? The result is an essential read for anyone interested in the complex processes that drive science and the forces that have shaped our marvelous brains.
More Information
ISBN 9781541646858
Publisher Basic Books
Publication Date Apr 21, 2020
Pages (number) 496
Genre Science and Nature
Author Matthew Cobb
Signed No
Format Hardcover
Editorial Reviews

"A fresh history and tour d' horizon of "the most complex object in the known universe." Although scientists still struggle to understand the brain, they know a great deal about it; Cobb, a professor of biological sciences, delivers an excellent overview."Kirkus Reviews

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