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PSYB65H3 (479)
Ted Petit (185)
Chapter 1

chapter 1

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Ted Petit

CHAPTER 1 The claim that humans only use about 10 percent of the brain has not been proven. Even when Flourens and Lashley took out large parts (90%) of the brain still had its basic functions. Psychology: the study of behaviour and attempting to describe, explain, change, and predict behaviours. Neuropsychology: the study of behaviour too but a specialty, including the relation between behaviour and the activity of the brain, assuming that the activity of the brain is partially responsible for ones behaviour. There are 2 types of neuropsychology: Clinical neuropsychology: the branch of neuropsychology dealing with psychological assessment, management, and rehabilitation of neurological disease and injury. Experimental Neuropsychology: also known as cognitive neuroscience/ neuropsychology, thebranch of neuropsychology focusing on how human behaviour arises from brainactivity, including how behavioural changes can be explained in terms of damaged neuralcomponents. It is important to learn the history of neuropsychology because there were many instances in time where scientist created theories about brain and behaviour relationships that are now proven to be false. Today we know that the brain affects behaviour but in the past that was not the case. Empedocles (known for theory about matter being composed of water, air, fire and earth): a philosopher who proposed the idea of the cardiac or cardiocentric hypothesis, where the heart was the source of behaviour. This hypothesis still has an effect on pop culture today, like how humans associate love with the heart and not the brain. Aristotle: also came to the conclusion that the heart was the centre involved with thought and sensation but only because it is warm and active and that since heat rises, the brain was the blood cooling centre because it is covered with a network of vasculature so according to him it must have been the radiator. He was wrong the blood actually helps cool the brain. Hippocrates and Galen: argues that the brain is not the source of human behaviour, they proposed the brain hypothesis or cephalocentric hypothesis where the brain is responsible for thought and sensation. Both of them were still wrong about some of the details. Galen thought that the brains ventricles and cerebrospinal fluid (supports, nourishes, cleans brain) played a role in cognition, which was later corrected by Magnus and Vesalius. Despite the ancient claims that the heart controls emotions and intellect, there is evidence others experimented with brain function. Observations of a fossilized skull fracture suggests that there was recognition that damaging the brain would cause death or disabling of an individual. Another skull that was found from 7000 years ago was cut open twice for surgical purposes and the individual survived this surgery as shown in bone regrowth. This was done to cure something. Ancient Egyptian writing from 5000 years ago also documents symptoms of brain damage but they didnt consider the brain important enough to mummify . They appreciate the brain in behaviour and perhaps some diseased states. Earlytheories did not recognize the importance of the brain in higher cognitive functions. It was looked at as an interpreter of signals while the mind was characterized as a separate entity from the brain. Trephination: producing a hole in the skull to produce therapeutic effects in ancient times. It was thought that the brain interpreted signals and that the mind was a separate entity entirely. Mind-Body Problem: The brain behaviour idea made a lot of phiolosphical questions become a problem. Ren Descartes proposed a reflexive theory of controlling behaviour describes as flowing animal spirits through valvules in nervous tissue. It described how external stimuli would move the skin then the filaments, releasing spirits and innervating the muscles. It could account for involuntary behaviour but could not account for voluntary behaviour or the variability in behaviour. Descartes believed the voluntary behaviours depended on a mechanical body with a decision-making soul, located in the pineal gland since it doesnt have a left and right component it is a midline structure and was surrounded by cerebrospinal fluid that cleanses and supports the brain (contained animal spirits which produce movement during voluntary action). Therefore voluntary movement caused movement of the pineal gland, resulting in the release of animal spirits throughout the body causing the body to move. Hydraulic machines were in at the time in Paris and this affected his theory. Theories of the human brain over time really relied on explanations from technologies that were present at the time. One explanation didnt even look at the brain as just a computers, it looked at the brain as a network of computers like todays supercomputers. However with all of this mechanical associations with behaviour, it still couldnt solve the variability in behaviour in the same situations. According to the Harvard Law of A
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