Saturday, November 12, 2011

The Master & the Emissary: How the Structure of the Human Brain has Influenced the Development of Western Civilization

Iain McGilchrist's book "The Master and the Emissary" looks at how the structure of the human brain has influenced the development of Western civilization. He suggests that the health of individuals and civilizations depends on a strong reciprocal connection between the right hemisphere (which connects us to the world, "wholeness," and the mysteriously "unknowable") and the left hemisphere (which narrows our focus to "parts" and assumes it knows more than it does). Perhaps many of the problems we are now facing can be traced to a growing separation between the functions of each brain, and an over-reliance on the left hemisphere, which projects its limited vision onto an essentially ambiguous reality.

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