Lecture 2 Human Brains and Behavior
- DESCARTES: the pineal gland
- (2) The dissolution of the roman empire the massive area controlled by Rome and it was
successful in its date and time
- The history of Neuropsychology- The Dark Ages: The Roman Empire was biggest of its time and
over the period of time it dissolves itself it was the dark ages and called that there was no
recorded history of the human advancement and most of the early psychologists were religious,
and the fall of the roman empire and the rise of Islam and Christianity and the 12 century was
establishments of universities, we wouldn’t have universities if it wasn’t for the churches. 15ths
and 16 century was Leonardo Divinci and invention of mass printing it was the first thing to
spread the word of God.
- Nicolaus Copernicus: His research and countering the geocentric viewpoint the earth is the
center of the universe. He looked at the sky and calculated the earth and he realized we are
rotating around the sun. On his death bed he published this.
- Galileo Galilei: Adopted this heliocentric viewpoint and became quite success and he perfected
the existing telescope. And he published his work and got yelled at by the pope and he framed it
as a hypothetical approach. And someone who adopted his geocentric viewpoint was simplicio
he made it into a script sort of. Embody the scientific method of research
- Andreas Vasalius: Dissected the brain and had amazing cuts. Dissected it to ventricular system
of human brain vs. other brain was not much different and he realized the ventricular system
was important to movement and thought and thought maybe cortex was most important for
mind and body system
- William Harvey: function of heart and found that heart is just a mechanical part and just pushes
blood to the body. It was not associated with mind body system.
- Rene Descartes: he offered testable theory for people to consider whether a species or
organism has a mind and he came up with a language and action test and if you have it to
children animals and so on it was negative outcome and after it became a common notions that
those that are animals, children and mentally ill don’t possess a mind like the normal human
being does. Vivisection always took place during research back before like removing structure
while their alive without anesthetics. Dissecting the animal when their alive and they thought
that the animal was mechanical and it was based on the idea that we are different than them.
- The skull pictures when prof went to Paris. The skulls are changing in shape and size. And the
last one is a camera and a picture of you and its showing you like here are your ancestors and here is you. And the skull of Descartes and there was a picture of literature being used. And
what struck me was one fundamental eerie aspect to his remains, his skull is separate from his
body and in the afterlife his skull was separate from his body. And they tracked down what
happened with his life.
Evolution of the Nervous system:
- Cladoogram: Similarities and differences. In the species and individuals. Looking at span of time
based on DNA and we have and common ancestor.
- Primates have excellent color vision and hand eye coordination and their able to utilize their
upper extremities to socialize with the world. Female produces one infant per gestation
compared to rats they have litters and pups. And the extent to that the primate infant becomes
independent. Looking at fossil record there are morphological changes in cranium in brain and
hands. There is a change in that.
- Species comparison: why do you study non-human animals to understand brains of humans and
animals have certain attributes like bats have night color vision. Animals have less complex
anatomy so how is that advantageous to us? Looking at other animals we have a common
ancestor and animals have less nervous system repertoire and they did not adapt like humans
and other animal species are other ancestors and they did not develop like the humans. DNA
research have such short lifespan and manipulate certain DNA and research and it gives some
evidence of how the brain may evolve
- The fish the frog and parrot and human which has the biggest human brain. Fish are the worst
they have the smallest brain. They’re not the greatest pets.
- Questions addressed by studying nonhuman animals: a rat or a dog can only engage in so many
behaviors so we can limit them. Treat clinical disorders. Dogs get the same pathological
problems that humans can get like when the dog gets older he sometimes gets demented. More
control over the variable in animals environment that can tell us how they evolved
- Beyond 70 million years like cat’s dogs and etc., we have a common ancestor and going back
70-80 years the development of the brain diagram. The graph is the amount of time and y axis
is similarities we have the corpus collosum similar in all of us and so on and so forth.
- Human origins: our domain is not Linear A lot of subspecies existed. Humans are the only ones
that survived out of all the hominoids. And looking at brain we look at brain skulls and what not
and we can extract what their abilities were. What artifacts and tools are possibly related with
the brain? The brain was accommodating the environment with the tools the tools evolved as
the brain was. - Human evolution: chimps share 99% and only 1% DNA being different causes the great
morphological changes in the bodies and the size of chimps brain is much smaller than human
- Behavioral research: they are social animals and they are great research models because they
are the closest animals to us. Chimps are no longer used as research models
- Key things separating humans and animals: we walk upright, run and use hands to catch and
manipulate the environment. Nervous system is different and like for the dog their spine is on a
horizon and the brain is in the straight line but for humans they have 90 degrees flip allows us to
walk upright. And we are able to move fro