Filed under psychlogy

Nourishment for our Brains

Nourishment for our Brains

This is from the i paper, an obituary for Marian Diamond Neuroscientist 11/11/1926 – 25/7/2017. Her work has huge implications for how our society is changing: Marian Diamond, a neuroscientist who studied Albert Einstein’s brain and was the first to show that the brain’s anatomy can change with experience, has died aged 90. … Her … Continue reading

The Last Days of Solitary

The Last Days of Solitary

This is a really disturbing documentary by the BBC on the US prison system, in which solitary confinement has become widespread as a last resort for dealing with violent uncontrollable prisoners. But for centuries they’ve known it doesn’t work, and in many cases makes prisoners worse. It also costs a hell of a lot of … Continue reading

Beyond Tattoos

Beyond Tattoos

Here’s an article from the i back in February, an interview with tattoo artist Grace Neutral who is covered in tattoos, and has moved on to the next body alterations. There is a lot of interesting stuff here, but also much that I find worrying. For a start, tattoos are permanent. Yes, you can get them … Continue reading

Beyond Love

I’ve become a huge fan of Ira Glass’s ‘This American Life’ podcast, especially since it provides a welcome antidote to all the bad news coming out of the states recently. Last week i stumbled upon one of the strangest stories ever, in the episode ‘Grand Gestures’ which challenges so many aspects of what we are … Continue reading

Junger on Mass Killings

This is another piece from the book Tribe On Homecoming and Belonging by award winning journalist Sebastian Junger: The ultimate act of disaffiliation isn’t littering or fraud, of course, but violence against your own people. When the Navajo Nation … were rounded up and confined to a reservation in the 1860s, a terrifying phenomenon became … Continue reading

The English Way of Grief

The English, or perhaps the British, have a reputation for being withdrawn, unemotional, but this is to underestimate the reality. It seems to me we have fewer formal rituals, but a readiness to invent stuff on the fly. This is from Grace Dent in last weekend’s i paper, inspired by the murder of a popular member … Continue reading

Koko the Gorilla

Last week I watched a documentary on Koko and her 45 year relationship with Dr Penny Patterson formerly of Stamford University. When Dr Patterson was working on her thesis, she planned to train a higher ape to learn sign language, after earlier work had shown that apes did not have the physical characteristics to learn … Continue reading

Mothers and Fathers as Parents

There tends to be a general assumption that mothers are better at parenting; it makes sense, as they have carried the child, given birth to it, and generally breastfeed, so it seems reasonable that their bond, their commitment to the child, should be stronger than the father. But new research sheds some doubt on this. … Continue reading

Music and Insomnia

Last year I posted a blog about the incredible Radio 3 marathon broadcast by Max Richter called Sleep. Here is some of it on his album: In 2014 comedian/writer/musician Matt Berry released Music for Insomniacs, the result in part of his struggle to get enough sleep, investigating if some types of music may help. Now … Continue reading