From Publishers Weekly
This comprehensive new look at the hormonal roller coaster that rules women's lives down to the cellular level, "a user's guide to new research about the female brain and the neurobehavioral systems that make us women," offers a trove of information, as well as some stunning insights. Though referenced like a work of research, Brizedine's writing style is fully accessible. Brizendine provides a fascinating look at the life cycle of the female brain from birth ("baby girls will connect emotionally in ways that baby boys don't") to birthing ("Motherhood changes you because it literally alters a woman's brain-structurally, functionally, and in many ways, irreversibly") to menopause (when "the female brain is nowhere near ready to retire") and beyond. At the same time, Brizedine is not above reviewing the basics: "We may think we're a lot more sophisticated than Fred or Wilma Flintstone, but our basic mental outlook and equipment are the same." While this book will be of interest to anyone who wonders why men and women are so different, it will be particularly useful for women and parents of girls.
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Louann Brizendine, a neuropsychiatrist at the University of California, San Francisco, explores groundbreaking issues in brain science with mixed results. Critics debate the author's presentation and research; some extol her many and varied sources and the book's accessibility, while others take her to task for relying too heavily on anecdotal evidence and "dumbing down" the text (Robin Marantz Henig cites the author's repeated use of "cutesy language" and slang). Despite the critical ambivalence, the author certainly has the credentials to write this book. Brizendine graduated from the Yale University School of Medicine and draws on research done at the Women's and Teen Girls' Mood and Hormone Clinic, which she founded at UCSF in 1994. So the question is, do you require step-by-step proof for conclusions some consider controversial, or are you willing to take her word for it?
Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc.