Animating Brains

Cornelius Borck*

*Corresponding author for this work
1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

A recent paper famously accused the rising field of social neuroscience of using faulty statistics under the catchy title 'Voodoo Correlations in Social Neuroscience'. This Special Issue invites us to take this claim as the starting point for a cross-cultural analysis: in which meaningful ways can recent research in the burgeoning field of functional imaging be described as, contrasted with, or simply compared to animistic practices? And what light does such a reading shed on the dynamics and effectiveness of a century of brain research into higher mental functions? Reviewing the heated debate from 2009 around recent trends in neuroimaging as a possible candidate for current instances of 'soul catching', the paper will then compare these forms of primarily image-based brain research with older regimes, revolving around the deciphering of the brain's electrical activity. How has the move from a decoding paradigm to a representational regime affected the conceptualisation of self, psyche, mind and soul (if there still is such an entity)? And in what ways does modern technoscience provide new tools for animating brains?

Original languageEnglish
JournalMedical History
Volume60
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)308-324
Number of pages17
ISSN0025-7273
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 01.07.2016

Research Areas and Centers

  • Research Area: Center for Cultural Studies (ZKFL)

DFG Research Classification Scheme

  • 206-08 Cognitive and Systemic Human Neuroscience
  • 108-02 Theoretical Philosophy
  • 111-02 Empirical Socila Research

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