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The Rise of the Neurosciences
PSYC 344
Fall 2019 not offered
Crosslisting: SISP 344

This course examines the expansion and proliferation of the neurosciences from the early modern period to the present. We will investigate the recent claim that we are living in the midst of a "neuro-revolution" with vast social, political, and economic consequences around the globe. Yet at the same time, we will look to the past for similar moments of transition and transformation of the modern sciences abetted by experiments on the nervous system. Students will analyze texts from Descartes to Damasio, paying attention to the rhetorical explanatory power of certain epistemic objects and instruments--samples of brain tissue, synaptic networks, clinical case histories, and MRI scans--as well as the institutional power shifts that sanctioned research practices such as vivisection, phrenology, electrophysiology, and functional imaging. Through our reading of primary sources by philosophers and physicians and secondary sources by historians and sociologists, this course will explore what is at stake in the "neuro-turn," and why it provokes such a mixed reaction of hope and hype, then as well as now.
Credit: 1 Gen Ed Area Dept: SBS PSYC
Course Format: SeminarGrading Mode: Student Option
Level: UGRD Prerequisites: None
Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (PSYC)

Last Updated on JUN-24-2024
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