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Q&A | February 27, 2014

Rene Denfeld: IMG Powell’s Q&A: Rene Denfeld



Describe your latest book. The Enchanted is a story narrated by a man on death row. The novel was inspired by my work as a death penalty... Continue »
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1 Local Warehouse Biology- Neurobiology

Mind Wide Open: Your Brain and the Neuroscience of Everyday Life

by

Mind Wide Open: Your Brain and the Neuroscience of Everyday Life Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In this nationally bestselling, compulsively readable account of what makes brain science a vital component of people's quest to know themselves, acclaimed science writer Steven Johnson subjects his own brain to a battery of tests to find out what's really going on inside. He asks:
  • How do we "read" other people?
  • What is the neurochemistry behind love and sex?
  • What does it mean that the brain is teeming with powerful chemicals closely related to recreational drugs?
  • Why does music move us to tears?
  • Where do breakthrough ideas come from?
Johnson answers these and many more questions arising from the events of our everyday lives. You do not have to be a neuroscientist to wonder, for example, why do you smile? And why do you sometimes smile inappropriately, even if you don't want to? How do others read your inappropriate smile? How does such interplay occur neurochemically, and what, if anything, can you do about it?

Fascinating and rewarding, Mind Wide Open speaks to brain buffs, self-obsessed neurotics, barstool psychologists, mystified parents, grumpy spouses, exasperated managers, and anyone who enjoys speculating and gossiping about the motivations and behaviors of other human beings. Steven Johnson shows us the transformative power of understanding brain science and offers new modes of introspection and tools for better parenting, better relationships, and better living.

Review:

"It's the rare popular science book that not only gives the reader a gee-whiz glimpse at an emerging field, but also offers a guide for incorporating its new insights into one's own worldview....Johnson weaves disparate strands of brain research and theory smoothly into the narrative...which leaves readers' minds more open than they were." Publishers Weekly

Review:

"[A] lucid and engaging travelogue from the frontiers of human brain science." Steven Pinker, author of The Blank Slate and How the Mind Works

Review:

"Celebrates the brain's complexity and wonder even as it demonstrates that you can get to know your mind better than you ever thought." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"Spreading a gospel to be curious about one's own mind, Johnson, aided by personal anecdotes about, for example, the length of his attention span, will snare even those unfamiliar with brain science." Booklist

Synopsis:

Readers shy about slapping electrodes on their own temples can get a vicarious scientific thrill as the author tries out empathy tests, neurofeedback, and MRI scans. The results paint a distinct picture of the author and uncover general brain secrets at the same time.

About the Author

Steven Johnson is the bestselling author of Interface Culture, Emergence, and Everything Bad Is Good for You as well as a columnist for Discover and a contributing editor at Wired. He lives in New York City with his wife and two sons, and can be reached via the Web at www.stevenberlinjohnson.com.

Table of Contents

Contents

Preface: Kafka¹s Room

  • 1. Mind Sight
  • 2. The Sum of My Fears
  • 3. Your Attention, Please
  • 4. Survival of the Ticklish
  • 5. The Hormones Talking
  • 6. Scan Thyself
  • Conclusion: Mind Wide Open
  • Notes
  • Bibliography
  • Acknowledgments
  • Index

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

crowyhead, September 15, 2006 (view all comments by crowyhead)
This is a really excellent look at how neuroscience relates to our everyday emotional lives. One of the most interesting bits to me was the discussion of the way that we remember trauma. Research now shows that a lot of conventional wisdom about trauma is flat-out wrong; in particularly, this book suggests that if "talking out" a traumatic event reproduces the fear response (increased heart rate, etc.), it may cause the fear produced by the memories to become more firmly etched, not less. This means that talk therapy might not actually be the most effective treatment for survivors, especially if the trauma is recent.

It can be kind of eerie to realize that so much of what we experience emotionally is related to chemicals flowing about in your brain, but I found it fascinating. I'm pretty used to the idea in some ways already, since I take medication to control my depression, but this book has really sparked my interest and I'm planning on seeking out some of the books that he mentions in his excellent footnotes.
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Leslie Jackson, August 13, 2006 (view all comments by Leslie Jackson)
I read this book in 2005 and thoroughly enjoyed it! It is comparable to a Nova programme on PBS: a friendly reporter doing a science documentary on brain-imaging technology and the chemicals involved in many aspects of psychology, for example; pain-management, embarassment, the learning process. Definitely an engaging read for anyone who wants to get to know themselves better!
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780743241663
Author:
Johnson, Steven
Publisher:
Scribner Book Company
Subject:
General
Subject:
General science
Subject:
Neuropsychology
Subject:
General Psychology & Psychiatry
Subject:
Self-Help : General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
B102
Publication Date:
May 2005
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
288
Dimensions:
8.44 x 5.5 in 8.82 oz

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Related Subjects

Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Brain
Health and Self-Help » Psychology » Cognitive Science
Health and Self-Help » Psychology » General
Health and Self-Help » Psychology » Mind and Consciousness
Health and Self-Help » Self-Help » General
Reference » Science Reference » General
Science and Mathematics » Biology » Neurobiology
Science and Mathematics » Featured Titles in Tech » General

Mind Wide Open: Your Brain and the Neuroscience of Everyday Life Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$6.95 In Stock
Product details 288 pages Scribner Book Company - English 9780743241663 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "It's the rare popular science book that not only gives the reader a gee-whiz glimpse at an emerging field, but also offers a guide for incorporating its new insights into one's own worldview....Johnson weaves disparate strands of brain research and theory smoothly into the narrative...which leaves readers' minds more open than they were." Publishers Weekly
"Review" by , "[A] lucid and engaging travelogue from the frontiers of human brain science."
"Review" by , "Celebrates the brain's complexity and wonder even as it demonstrates that you can get to know your mind better than you ever thought."
"Review" by , "Spreading a gospel to be curious about one's own mind, Johnson, aided by personal anecdotes about, for example, the length of his attention span, will snare even those unfamiliar with brain science."
"Synopsis" by , Readers shy about slapping electrodes on their own temples can get a vicarious scientific thrill as the author tries out empathy tests, neurofeedback, and MRI scans. The results paint a distinct picture of the author and uncover general brain secrets at the same time.
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