It is the most complex and mysterious object in the universe. Covered by a dull grey membrane, it resembles a gigantic, convoluted fungus. Its inscrutability has captivated scientists, philosophers and artists for centuries. It is, of course, the human brain.
With the help of science we can now begin to understand the extraordinary complexity of the brain’s circuits: we can see which nerve cells generate electricity as we fall in love, tell a lie or dream of a lottery win. And inside the 100 billion cells of this rubbery network is something remarkable: you.
In this entertaining and accessible book, Robert Winston takes us deep into the workings of the human mind and shows how our emotions and personality are the result of genes and environment. He explains how memories are formed and lost, how the ever-changing brain is responsible for toddler tantrums and teenage angst, plus he reveals the truth behind extra-sensory perception, déjà vu and out-of-body experiences. He also tells us how to boost our intelligence, how to tap into creative powers we never knew we had, how to break old habits and keep our brain fit and active as we enter old age.
The human mind is all we have to help us to understand it. Paradoxically, it is possible that science may never quite explain everything about this extraordinary mechanism that makes each of us unique.
Random House (2004)