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The Brain Has a Mind of Its Own: Insights From a Practicing Neurologist Hardcover – October 15, 1991

ISBN-13: 978-0517574836 ISBN-10: 0517574837 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 210 pages
  • Publisher: Crown; 1st edition (October 15, 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0517574837
  • ISBN-13: 978-0517574836
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 5.8 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,554,502 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

If you're feeling disconnected from the world, it might not be because of your mood; you could be a temporal lobe epileptic. In this collection of fascinating, accessible essays, Richard Restak--bestselling author of Brainscapes--explores the relationship between mind and brain. " ... I still find it difficult to believe," he states in the introduction, "that this three-pound mass of protoplasm with the consistency of an overripe avocado is the seat of who I am, of who we all are." If you've ever wondered how much our humanity is shaped by the gray, wrinkled organ between our ears, or even what's going on in our brains when we daydream or ride a bicycle, this book of spirited anecdotes will provide some interesting answers and raise even more questions. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Unlike psychiatrists who tend to underestimate the role of the brain in mental illness, neurologist Restak ( The Brain ) seeks the cause, in part, in brain dysfunction. Drawing on his patients' often dramatic stories, this gifted and disarming writer's vivid scientific imagery helps to demonstrate the mysterious interaction between the physical brain and the "inner-dimensional" mind. The gap between the two, he notes, has narrowed, thanks to recent advances in neurobiochemical and genetics research and technology. Among these is the PET scanner, which can record action in the brain before a conscious act of will and help diagnose schizophrenia. One of the wide-ranging essays here concerns the benefits to be derived from such activities as contemplating a bonsai tree, which, along with other "prescriptions for insight," Restak much prefers to the cult of self-absorption attributable, he believes, to psychoanalysis, how-to books and "communal group grope" approaches.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By RNS VINE VOICE on September 15, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Richard Restak, MD offers readers a sort of memoir where he discusses and provides his opinion and insights regarding recent discoveries in the neurosciences and related disciplines. Each topical essay is short, well-written and ranges about the mysterious landscape of the brain and human behavior, the mysteries of mental illness, and the dogmatism and conflicts of those in the medical trenches trying to address the suffering of those entering their offices.

Restak is a gifted writer who has a wealth of experience. I like the way he interjects events and occurrences from his own life to offer unique perspectives in the relationship of the brain and the mind, new techniques in imaging, the wealth of new medications, genetic studies and applications, the gaps between psychiatry and neurology, and their impacts on psychosurgery, genetic engineering, biological psychiatry, among others. His strategy of opening most chapters with real-world cases (names changed, of course) and then bringing in the clinical and medical context works wonderfully. And, I particularly enjoy the wide range of topics -- from discussing how the Greek philosophers or ancients viewed something to the next chapter being devoted to say, designer drugs.

A fascinating read, one you'll enjoy keeping by the bedside to read a couple of chapters at a time.

R. Neil Scott
Middle Tennessee State University
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Sword man on December 27, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Great book. Looks at many questions once reserved for the arts, religion and philosophy and not science. I really enjoyed this book. Easy and quick read! I got this after reading "The Body Has a Mind" of it's own which I also highly reccommend. One must be carefull to not read into the information their already pre decided beliefs. It will make you either totally agree with Restak and think he is a guru or hate him as a heritic. He is neither just a scientist who is also human. Love the book!
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By Lauralee Barton on January 28, 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Well written account of neuo-impaired individuals written so the layman can understand
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