March 24, 2016 By Dana Foundation in Behavior, Brain Awareness Week, Emotions, Events, Mental health Tags: BAW, Brain Awareness Week, Brainwave, Brainwave Series, depression, douglas mennin, emotion, emotion regulation therapy, how to weep in public, Hunter College, jacqueline novak, New York City, read lab, regulation of emotion in anxiety and depression lab, Rubin Museum of Art, treatment
When it comes to explanations for human behavior, preeminent experimental psychologist Steven Pinker, Ph.D., adamantly believes that genes matter. When others question this position, claiming that attributing emotion and behavior to genetics is merely a way of evading responsibility, Pinker will often offer a cultural rather than a scientific response:
Dear kindly Sergeant Krupke,
You gotta understand
It’s just our bringing up-ke,
That gets us out of hand.
Our mothers are all junkies,
Our fathers all are drunks.
Golly Moses naturally we’re punks
Can consciousness continue after the brain stops working? Why do we seem to let emotions outshine reason during the decision-making process? Which neural impulses trigger laughter?
This past Wednesday, as part of the Rubin Museum’s Brainwave series, face transplant surgeon Eduardo Rodriguez talked about the mental and physical aspects of his profession with Princeton neuroscientist Timothy Buschman. The first face transplants took place in 2005, Rodriguez said; roughly 30 have taken place since then. One of the few people capable of doing this surgery, Rodriguez gave great detail about what it takes to transplant a face, what it means for people involved, and what the future holds for this type of surgery.
Successful face transplantation requires teamwork. In the case of his patient Richard, Rodriguez said, 150 professionals tended to various aspects of the case, including psychiatrists, neuroethicists, sociologists, pathologists, radiologists, and dozens of surgeons. [Read more about Richard’s experience in this ABC News story]