Where is my Mind?
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Where is my Mind?
Psychology,Evidence & Enquiry
What are the plausible reasons for the belief that the mind is in the same place as the heart?
Fear and emotion increase heart rate
: increased amygdala activity increases heart rate during emotional processing- Yang et al, 2008 (showed facial expressions varying in fear)
Damage to the heart is often fatal (heart disease is #1 cause of death in the US according to Medicalnewstoday (2014))
The heart is at the centre of the body and develops first
Who first proposed that the mind was in the brain?
Galen(2nd century AD)
Traced nerves to the brain and realised they were related to sensations in the body
Touched hot brain and severed nerves in animals and affected nerves
Also noted that age and time changed the appearance
Stated that the soul (animus) flowed through ventricles
Who proposed the theory of humours?
Bloody Galen again (AD130)
What are the fundaments of the humour theory?
4 temperaments linked to amount of bodily fluids
Black Bile (earth)
: Melancholic temperament (quiet, pessimistic, anxious, moody etc)
Yellow Bile (fire)
: Choleric temperament (Touchy, restless, impulsive, active and optimistic)
: Phlegmatic temperament (passive, thoughtful, reliable and calm)
: Sanguine temperament (Carefree, talkative, outgoing, lively and sociable)
This echoes modern neuroscience (serotonin levels)
Who came up with the theory of Cartesian Dualism
Inspired by 17th automata
Believed the soul and brain interacted around the pineal gland with the soul flowing through ventricles and the nerves connected to it
Who argued with the notion of cartesian dualism?
Willis and Steno in the sixteen hundreds
Tensed muscle in a tube of water
If nerve transmission was the movement of fluids, the water level should rise
Newton believed it was vibrations due to observation of how vibrations transmit information
Who pioneered the concept of brain regions being responsible for certain functions?
Franz Joseph Gall, believed that people with large bulging eyes had better memories due to the fact people hold their heads when thinking
Together with Swedenborg and Niles Fowler, they pioneered the idea of brain structure of shape being responsible for functions
Who investigated Phrenology?
Francis Galton (1796)
Used statistical method to investigate brain shape and personality measuring several thousand people
Believed the brain was composed of 27 different organs and enlarged organs meant extensive use
These organs related to personality traits and lifestyle such as religiousness and destructiveness
Three types of shape:
Women of good intellect type:
Murders and suicides type
: large and long heads, insignificant development of frontal lobes, large central loves. Indentations above the ear correlate with destructiveness