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Incognito: the secret lives of the brain

David Eagleman

If the conscious mind—the part you consider you—is just the tip of the iceberg in the brain, what is all the rest doing?

Why can your foot jump halfway to the brake pedal before you become aware of danger ahead? What do Odysseus and the global financial crisis have in common? Why are people whose names begin with J more likely to marry other people whose names begin with J? And why is it so difficult to keep a secret?

Our behaviour, thoughts and experiences are inseparably linked to a vast chemical-electrical network called the nervous system. The machinery is utterly alien to us, and yet, somehow, it is us.

Neuroscientist David Eagleman plumbs the depths of the subconscious to illuminate this hidden world in his engaging exploration of the human brain.

Watch David talking about Incognito and the fascinating machinations of the brain.

David Eagleman
About the Author

David Eagleman, PHD, directs the Laboratory for Perception and Action and the Initiative on Neuroscience and Law at Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas. He is best known for his work on time perception, synesthesia, and neurolaw.

He has had essays published in all manner of journals including Nature and Science. He also lectures widely...

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288 pp
Text publication date:
30 May 2011
AU Price:
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Praise for David Eagleman

You will learn a great deal that is fascinating from Incognito

Incognito proposes a grand new account of the relationship between consciousness and the brain. It is full of dazzling ideas, as it is chockablock with facts and instances, but the big one is unexpected: consciousness is not all that important. Consciousness, Mr. Eagleman writes, “is the smallest player in the operations of the brain.” Read full review.

An enormously fascinating look at the mind and how most of it works without us

having to think about it … Neuroscientist David Eagleman plumbs the depths of the

subconscious to illuminate this hidden world. And it’s written in entertaining and

informative English, not psychobabble.

‘There are a lot of brain books around these days, but over-achieving neuroscientist and fiction author David Eagleman’s dismantling of the idea that we have much control over what we think and do is endlessly surprising and a joyful read.’

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