Synopses & Reviews
D. F. Swaab is an internationally renowned researcher in neuroscience and a professor of neurobiology at the University of Amsterdam. He is the founder of the Netherlands Brain Bank, which supplies the international research community with clinical and neuropathological brain tissue, and he currently leads the Neuropsychiatric Disorders research team at the Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience. In 2008, Professor Swaab received the Medal of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences for his significant role in national and international neuroscience.
"How the brain works is one of modern science's great questions, and Dutch neurobiologist Swaab, in sharing his 45 years of collected wisdom, reveals the organ as a living being in and of itself. It's a fascinating survey and though Swaab embraces the impossibility of arriving at scientific conclusions, he never lacks for carefully selected information. Broadly speaking, the book is organized chronologically, examining the brain from birth into adolescence, through adulthood and, finally, to death. Disorders, which provide incredible insights into normally functioning brains, are included in most sections. Swaab employs both personal and scientific observation in near-equal measure. Sometimes the first person perspective can result in questionable conclusions; for example, Swaab's chapter on sports and the brain seems to come down unnecessarily hard on athletics, and takes with a grain of salt significant research into the neurological benefits of sports. Nevertheless, as the author makes clear early on, his insights are not conclusions. They are instead compelling starting points, collectively working as we learn neurons do to build a comprehensive, functional picture of the human brain. Illus." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.