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Description - States of Mind by Roberta Conlan

An all-star lineup of brain scientists reveal what the public needs to know States of Mind is a wonderfully accessible introduction to the most important recent findings about how our health, behavior, feelings, and identities are influenced by what goes on inside our brains. The book covers the sources of depression and how it can be treated; the effects of stress on our brains and general health; how memory works and the phenomenon of false memory; why we dream and the role dreams play in our lives; how genes and life experience combine to shape our personalities and temperaments; and more. * Kay Redfield Jamison, bestselling author of An Unquiet Mind, on depression * J. Allan Hobson, author of the groundbreaking The Dreaming Brain, on dreams * Steven Hyman, director of the National Institute of Mental Health, on genes and environment * Jerome Kagan, director of Harvard's Mind-Brain Behavior Initiative, on temperament * Eric Kandel, director of Columbia's Center for Neurobiology and Behavior, on memory * Joseph LeDoux, author of the acclaimed The Emotional Brain, on emotions * Bruce McEwen, director of the Neuroendocrinology Laboratory at Rockefeller University, on stress * Esther Sternberg, head of Immunology and Behavior at the Naitonal Institute of Mental Health, on the brain and disease From the Smithsonian Associates/Dana Alliance for the Brain Initiatives Series

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780471299639
ISBN-10: 0471299634
Format: Hardback
(225mm x 145mm x 21mm)
Pages: 214
Imprint: John Wiley & Sons Inc
Publisher: Turner Publishing Company
Publish Date: 16-Mar-1999
Country of Publication: United States

Other Editions - States of Mind by Roberta Conlan

Book Reviews - States of Mind by Roberta Conlan

US Kirkus Review » This book compiles public lectures by eight neuroscientists in a series sponsored by the Smithsonian Associates and the Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives, and edited by a former managing editor for Time-Life Books. Each lecture serves as a primer for the general reader. However, the coverage is a little skewed. While the experts here cut a wide swath in brain research - including development, learning, emotions, mental illness, addiction, and dreaming - nearly all emphasize the rote of stress, fear, anxiety, depression, and kindred downers as essential in building our brains. To be sure, without hardwiring of fear and our responses to it, we would lack the wherewithal "to take arms against a sea of troubles." All the same, from Jerome Kagan's pioneering studies of shyness to J. Allan Hobson's comment that most dreams are unpleasant, one can't help but feel there must be more to the life of the mind. That said, much here is of interest. Kay Redfield Jamison provides a fascinating lecture on depression and manic-depression in relation to creativity; her examples include Byron, Woolf, and Hemingway. Such conditions have genetic components, and she offers evidence that the expansive thinking associated with elevated mood states may lead to making novel connections and combinations of ideas. Elsewhere, in pieces contributed by Bruce McEwen (stress and the brain), Esther Steinberg (emotions and diseases), and Joseph LeDoux (the power of emotions), contributors discuss how emotions can be conditioned and affect unconscious memory, along with the recurrent theme that our nervous systems are intimately connected to the immune and endocrine systems. Potentially, hormones can upset the balance of the immune system and contribute to hypertension, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and other chronic ills. But Steven Hyman, among others, reminds us that the brain is also extraordinarily plastic - capable of unlearning bad habits, as well as learning new tricks. Good as far as it goes. But it would be nice to also have a series of lectures that accentuates the positive. (Kirkus Reviews)

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Author Biography - Roberta Conlan

J. ALLAN HOBSON, author of the groundbreaking The Dreaming Brain, leads us on a tour of dream states, the reasons we dream, and what dream studies reveal about our minds. STEVEN HYMAN, director of the National Institute of Mental Health, traces the links between nature and nurture, particularly in addiction and mental illness, to explain the relationship between inherited tendencies and the impact of life experience. KAY REDFIELD JAMISON, bestselling author of An Unquiet Mind, explains manic depression, its prevalence among gifted artists, writers, and musicians, and the societal questions raised by trying to eradicate the "depression gene." JEROME KAGAN, director of Harvard's Mind--Brain--Behavior Initiative, presents the latest findings on how a child's environment and inborn biology combine to shape and reshape personality and temperament. ERIC KANDEL, director of Columbia's Center for Neurobiology and Behavior, takes us along the chain of biological events that create long--term memories, revealing how we stand at the brink of helping those who suffer from grave mental and memory disorders. JOSEPH LEDOUX, author of the acclaimed The Emotional Brain, guides us through the pathways of emotion and describes his pioneering work in the biology of the emotion of fear. BRUCE MCEWEN, director of the Laboratory of Neuroendocrinology at Rockefeller University, reports on the growing problem of stress and reveals the damage it can inflict on both biological health and cognitive abilities, such as memory. ESTHER STERNBERG, chief of the section on neuroendocrine immunology and behavior at the National Institute of Mental Health, shares her findings in the study of the brain and disease, demonstrating the substances at work in the nervous and immune systems and the reaction of these systems to strong emotions. States of Mind enables you to share in the thrill and wonder of the very latest explorations into the nature and function of the human mind. ROBERTA CONLAN is a regular contributor to the publications of the National Academy of Sciences.

Books By Roberta Conlan

States of Mind by Roberta Conlan
Paperback, January 2001