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Brain as Computer "Is a Bad Metaphor"



(p. A13) In "The Biological Mind: How Brain, Body, and Environment Collaborate to Make Us Who We Are," Mr. Jasanoff, the director of the MIT Center for Neurobiological Engineering, presents a lucid primer on current brain science that takes the form of a passionate warning about its limitations. He argues that the age of popular neurohype has persuaded many of us to identify completely with our brains and to misunderstand the true nature of these marvelous organs.

We hear constantly, for example, that the brain is a computer. This is a bad metaphor, Mr. Jasanoff insists. Computers run on electricity, so we concentrate on the electrical activity within the brain; yet there is also chemical and hormonal signaling, for which there are no good computing analogies.



For the full review, see:

Steven Poole. ""BOOKSHELF; Identify Your Self." The Wall Street Journal (Friday, April 6, 2018): A13.

(Note: the online version of the review has the date April 5, 2018, and has the title "BOOKSHELF; 'The Biological Mind' Review: Identify Your Self.")


The book under review, is:

Jasanoff, Alan. The Biological Mind: How Brain, Body, and Environment Collaborate to Make Us Who We Are. New York: Basic Books, 2018.






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