Parts Of The Brain Essay

Parts Of The Brain Essay-75
For example, the Viennese physician Franz Joseph Gall (1758-1828) became convinced for the flimsiest of reasons that each of mankind's mental faculties, including our moral and intellectual capabilities, are each controlled by a separate "organ" within the cerebral hemispheres of the brain.The pseudo-science of phrenology that grew out of Gall's claims gained an enormous popular following in the 19th century; advocates believed that skilled practitioners could feel the lumps and bumps on an individual's skull to gain information about the underlying "organs" and thus fully describe the individual's personality and mental abilities.As you watch the TEDTalks in , notice how the speakers reference some of the same approaches used by Broca, Wernicke, Brodmann and Penfield, and how they apply the concepts of brain regionalization and localization of function .

For example, the Viennese physician Franz Joseph Gall (1758-1828) became convinced for the flimsiest of reasons that each of mankind's mental faculties, including our moral and intellectual capabilities, are each controlled by a separate "organ" within the cerebral hemispheres of the brain.The pseudo-science of phrenology that grew out of Gall's claims gained an enormous popular following in the 19th century; advocates believed that skilled practitioners could feel the lumps and bumps on an individual's skull to gain information about the underlying "organs" and thus fully describe the individual's personality and mental abilities.As you watch the TEDTalks in , notice how the speakers reference some of the same approaches used by Broca, Wernicke, Brodmann and Penfield, and how they apply the concepts of brain regionalization and localization of function .

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Thus, we often have to infer how the human brain develops by studying the developing brains of other species, so-called "model organisms" selected for their particular advantages in certain experimental procedures.

Aside from helping us to work out how the adult brain functions, research on brain development is a major area in neuroscience for other reasons as well.

Although phrenology is now discredited, the fundamental idea that different functions are localized to different areas of the brain turned out to have merit — even if Gall got the details wrong.

The story of phrenology also provides a salutary lesson on the dangers of accepting popular beliefs about aspects of brain function and dysfunction that are difficult to critically evaluate through scientific experimentation.

Bear in mind that many current ideas may prove wrong.

Indeed, it's the excitement of generating and testing, and trying to prove or disprove ideas that might explain the great unknown inside our heads that motivates many research neuroscientists around the world.

For example, many conditions like schizophrenia and autism can be traced back to abnormalities in earlier brain development.

The great molecular, structural and functional diversity of brain cells, along with their specializations and precise interactions, are acquired in an organized way through processes that build on differences between the relatively small numbers of cells in the early embryo.

The Egyptians wrote the first known descriptions of the brain and its anatomy about 3700 years ago, but another 1200 years elapsed before Greek philosophers of the Hippocratic School identified the brain as the organ responsible for our cognitive functions. C., Hippocrates declared, "Men ought to know that from the brain, and from the brain only, arise our pleasures, joy, laughter and jests, as well as our sorrows, pains, griefs, and tears." However, not everyone agreed: although Plato and Hippocrates thought that the brain was responsible for sensation, intelligence and mental processes, Aristotle believed it was the heart.

Over the next 2500 years, the work of great European intellectuals including Galen of Bergama, Leonardo da Vinci and Rene Descartes improved our understanding of the brain.

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