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Paperback Brainscapes: An Introduction to What Neuroscience Has Learned About the Structure, Function, and Abilities of theBrain (Discover Book) Book

ISBN: 0786881909

ISBN13: 9780786881901

Brainscapes: An Introduction to What Neuroscience Has Learned About the Structure, Function, and Abilities of theBrain (Discover Book)

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Book Overview

A comprehensive overview of the workings and abilities of the brain covers its structure and components, how it functions consciously and unconsciously, the ways in which brain cells communicate with one another and other parts of the body, and much more. Reprint. AB.

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

Slim book, concise writing about the brain.

This little green book is a definite must-have addition to any neuroscientist, educator, or anyone interested in the brain. Restak is a good writer, and not only weaves his words well, but uses the writings of others outside the field to make understanding the complicated workings of the brain understandable to someone who is just being introduced to it. I've used this particular book in several papers on deafness and cognition, and every once in a while I pick it up and reread parts of it (usually that I marked) that bear remembering. Certainly Restak is a remarkable writer, and thus probably a remarkable teacher. I wish I had had someone like him in Neuroscience...it would have helped tremendously to have someone so in love with his topic that he wants everyone to understand it. We need more science teachers and science writers like him to encourage young people to consider science as a possible career. And perhaps maybe if more people understood the brain, they would quit treating their own brains without regard to the damage they are doing to it by using drugs and alcohol, or misusing prescription drugs. Karen L. Sadler, Science Education, University of Pittsburgh, klsst23@pitt.edu

An excellent introduction for the educated reader

Written for the layman, this slim (135 pages) volume by a neurologist is a very up to date and comprehensive review of what we know about the brain, its functional structure, the role of neurotransmitters and even a bit about the nature of conciousness.Like Oliver Sachs, Restak focuses much of his attention on pathology, since not only is it the focus of neurologists, it also tells us quite a lot about the functional organization of the brain. Unlike Sachs, Restak delves deeply into the actual neuopathologies, the cells, the transmitters and the structure of the brain. While the level of detail is relatively superficial from a neuroanatomical point of view, the descriptions are still accurate and detailed; this would have been a nice introductory book to have for my first physiological psychology courses back in grad school. As well as being an excellent teacher, Restak is an excellent storyteller. Each chapter reads like a good adventure, leading us through the neural pathways, or like a mystery, tracing the history of a particular neuropathology. If you enjoy the medical detective stories of Berton Rouche, or the essays of Lewis Thomas, you'll find much to interest you here.

Fellow physician/"brain-author" refers patients to this one!

I have recommended this book to many a patient, as well as professional colleagues interested in getting "up to speed" with brain basics. Scientifically sound, and very readable, anyone interested in the brain will find this introductory book enjoyable and to the point. May I suggest "The Care and Feeding of Your Brain" for ways to tune up your own brain...Ken Giuffre' MD

The book makes understanding neuroscience easy.

Restak does an wonderful job of explaining the biological bases of behavior by giving examples. In addition, he reviews the research and provides an illustration of the direction psychology is moving toward. As a graduate student in clinical psychology I recommend this book to fellow graduate students and advanced undergraduate students.

Science explained for all scientists, old, new, and blue.

Brainscapes may be a small book with only 135 pages but it is packed with information that is informative and easily understood. Anatomy and physiology made interesting. When Dr. Restak describes the sodium/potassium pump more like a glob of Silly Putty that changes shape he creates and image that communicates the way your science teacher only dreamed about. What made the book a pleasure to read was how concise the author conveyed the information. One truth about brain research is "how little we know" and Restak never tries to shove any particular dogma down your throat. But instead offers a glance at the vast cornucopia of information and possible avenues awaiting investigation. He examines the criticism that has been leveled against the medical profession for prescribing drugs that may alter personality. Are illegal street drugs more acceptable to the public than a legal prescription? Finally, he discusses the philosophical questions of the brain studying itself. Is it possible to study yourself and be objective? It would be nice if all the science books written for the general public were as good as this one.
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