Tag neuroscience

“What Wine Goes with Cap’n Crunch?”

Ian Tattersall and Rob DeSalle— Asking, with the comedian George Carlin, “What wine goes with Cap’n Crunch?” might not actually be as trivial as it sounds. In fact, many people spend a lot of time worrying about which foods go best with which wines. This concern is not frivolous: the

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Madness and Memory: A Conversation with Nobel Laureate Stanley B. Prusiner, M.D.

Although he encountered enormous skepticism, Dr. Stanley B. Prusiner persevered in his research on the causes of degenerative brain diseases, convinced the scientific community of his findings, and, in 1997, received the Nobel Prize.  He argued that conditions including scrapie in sheep and goats, mad cow disease in cattle, and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans were

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How Our Left-Brained Society Might Be Making Us Unhappy

Follow @yaleSCIbooks We have a popular notion that the human brain is neatly divided: the right side dealing with emotion, the left side, with reason. In his acclaimed book, The Master and His Emissary: The Divided Brain and the Making of the Western World, Iain McGilchrist suggests that there is

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Something on Your Mind? The Brain Decides…

Follow @yaleSCIbooks How do we know how many eggs are in a dozen? How do we tell red from blue? How can we imagine tomorrow when the sun has not even begun to set on today? These are just a few of the mysteries associated with the human brain, the

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Feeling Happy Today?

Follow @yaleSCIbooks How are you? It’s a question we are constantly asking—on the sidewalk, over the copier, at the dinner table. Almost invariably the answer is noncommittal. “Fine.” “Okay.” “I’m doing well.” What about “happy”? Happiness is hard to talk about—not least because we have so many definitions of what

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Lest We Forget: The Evolution of Dignity

Follow @yaleSCIbooks Sarah Underwood— For ninety-five percent of human’s existence on earth, people generally respected each other’s dignity. As hunter-gatherers, humans had to protect themselves from wild animals and the elements. It made little sense for others of our own species to become extra enemies. For the last five percent

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