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Looking For Spinoza: Joy, Sorrow And The Feeling Brain

Author(s): Antonio R. Damasio

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A leading neurologist draws on 17th-century philosopher Spinoza and his own experience with patients to show the role of feelings in human affairs. ?Damasio thinks deeply and writes beautifully... We could not ask for a better guide.? < Eric Kandel, Nobel Laureate, Columbia University. The eminent neuroscientist, Antonio Damasio, explores the science of human emotion and what the great Dutch philosopher Baruch Spinoza can teach of how and why we feel. The Women's Bookshop says: A leading neurologist draws on 17th-century philosopher Spinoza and his own experience with patients to show the role of feelings in human affairs. ?Damasio thinks deeply and writes beautifully... We could not ask for a better guide.? < Eric Kandel, Nobel Laureate, Columbia University. Completing the trilogy that began with Descartes' Error and continued with The Feeling Of What Happens, eminent neuroscientist Antonio Damasio now focuses the full force of his research and wisdom on the emotions. He shows how joy and sorrow, those most defining of human feelings, are cornerstones of our survival. As he investigates the brain and mind mechanisms behind emotions and feelings, Damasio argues that the processes that evolution has designed to regulate our internal function not only preserve life within ourselves, but they create, motivate, and even shape our greatest cultural accomplishments. If Descartes declared a split between mind and body, Spinoza not only unified mind and body but intuitively understood the role of emotions in human survival and culture. So it is Spinoza who accompanies Damasio as he journeys back to the 17th century in search of the philosopher who, in Damasio's view, prefigured modern neuroscience. Antonio Damasio has always been attracted to the big mysteries of neurobiology; in Looking For Spinoza he brings us closer to understanding the delicate interaction between affect, consciousness, and memory, the processes that keep us alive and make life worth living.

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'Looking for Spinoza is exceptionally engaging and profoundly gratifying. Its erudition and wisdom provide a powerful statement that the pursuit of scientific knowledge about the human brain can go hand in hand with an overarching concern for our fellow humans' Nature

Born in Portugal, Antonio Damasio is Van Allen Distinguished Professor and head of the department of neurology at the University of Iowa College of Medicine, and Adjunct Professor at the Salk Institute in La Jolla, California. He is the author of Descartes' Error: Emotion, Reason and the Human Brain and The Feeling of What Happens: Body, Emotion and the Making of Consciousness.

General Fields

  • : 9780099421832
  • : Vintage
  • : Vintage
  • : May 2004
  • : 200mm X 129mm
  • : United Kingdom
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Antonio R. Damasio
  • : Paperback
  • : New edition
  • : 152.4
  • : 355
  • : diagrams, illustrations