The Tale of the Dueling Neurosurgeons: The History of the Human Brain as Revealed by True Stories of Trauma, Madness, and Recovery

The Tale of the Dueling Neurosurgeons: The History of the Human Brain as Revealed by True Stories of Trauma, Madness, and Recovery

Sam Kean


The writer of the bestseller The Disappearing Spoon finds the key internal workings of the mind via unusual yet actual stories.

Early reports of the human mind used an easy procedure: look forward to misfortune to strike — strokes, seizures, infectious illnesses, horrendous injuries — and spot how sufferers coped. in lots of instances their survival was once extraordinary, if complicated. Observers have been surprised by means of the differences that happened whilst diversified components of the mind have been destroyed, changing victims' personalities. mom and dad all at once couldn't realize their very own childrens. Pillars of the group grew to become pathological liars. a few humans couldn't converse yet may perhaps nonetheless sing.

In The story of the Dueling Neurosurgeons, Sam Kean travels via time with tales of neurological curiosities: phantom limbs, Siamese dual brains, viruses that devour patients' stories, blind those who see via their tongues. He weaves those narratives including prose that makes the pages fly by way of, to create a narrative of discovery that reaches again to the 1500s and the high-profile jousting twist of fate that encouraged this book's title.* With the lucid, masterful factors and razor-sharp wit his enthusiasts have come to anticipate, Kean explores the brain's mystery passageways and recounts the forgotten stories of the standard humans whose struggles, resilience, and deep humanity made neuroscience attainable.

*"The story of the Dueling Neurosurgeons" refers back to the case of French king Henri II, who in 1559 was once lanced in the course of the cranium in the course of a joust, leading to probably the most major instances in neuroscience background. for centuries scientists have won vital classes from nerve-racking injuries and health problems, and such misfortunes nonetheless symbolize their maximum source for discovery.

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