Making up the Mind: How the Brain Creates Our Mental World

Making up the Mind: How the Brain Creates Our Mental World

Language: English

Pages: 246

ISBN: 1405160225

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Written by one of the world’s leading neuroscientists, Making Up the Mind is the first accessible account of experimental studies showing how the brain creates our mental world.

  • Uses evidence from brain imaging, psychological experiments and studies of patients to explore the relationship between the mind and the brain
  • Demonstrates that our knowledge of both the mental and physical comes to us through models created by our brain
  • Shows how the brain makes communication of ideas from one mind to another possible

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of which we are unaware. But these effects are very difficult to demonstrate. To make sure that you are unaware of the object, I present it very briefly and “mask” it by presenting a second object immediately afterward in the same place. Typically the objects will be words or pictures on a computer screen. If the first object is presented sufficiently briefly, you will see only the second object. But if the first object is presented too briefly, it will have no effect on you at all. The timing of the

was for the monkey. And in terms of my awareness of what I am doing, the border seems to be inside my body, stopping at the point where I have the intention to draw a vertical line. My arm and 66 Seeing through the Brain’s Illusions hand then carry out this intention as if they had become a tool in the world outside.7 So how much do I really know about what my body is doing? Who’s in Control? Most of the work that scientists do is of little interest outside a very narrow circle of other

“I know it feels like that,” I reply. “But this is an illusion.” Daniel Wegner has proposed that we have no direct knowledge of causing our actions.16 All we know is that we have the intention to act, and then, a little later, the action occurs. We infer that our intention caused the action. But Wegner didn’t just stop with this speculation. He did some experiments to test the idea. He predicted that, if an action occurred after you had the intention to act, then you would assume that you had

University of Minnesota, is so keen on Bayes’ theorem. This is because public health is one of the many areas where Bayes’ theorem can be applied. Consider the problem of breast cancer.12 In particular consider the problem of the importance of routine screening. We know (this is the prior belief ) that by the age of 40, 1% of women will have breast cancer (p(A)). We also have a good test (this is the new evidence) for the presence of breast cancer – mammography. Eighty percent of women with

number 2 and semi-circle in the author’s appalling handwriting. If you watched the movements of the pen, would you be able to predict whether the stroke was going to finish as a 2 or a semi-circle? You can predict very well, but only if what you are watching is a recording of your own handwriting movements. Source: Redrawn after: Knoblich, G., Seigerschmidt, E., Flach, R., & Prinz, W. (2002). Authorship effects in the prediction of handwriting strokes: Evidence for action simulation during action

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