I delighted reading the exchanges of Donna Tabbish,
Brian Sandle and Pat Bermingham "the illuminator" on split
brain (and typewriting with only one brain stem! :-) ).
Regarding "functional" and surgical split-brain,
I remember having helped recently someone by posting my
remembrance that an article entitled "Functional split brain"
was published early in the seventies; I don't remember its
author but the source was located in California, and the
Science Citation Index should yield it under those words.
Anyway, the split-brain is one form of parcella-
tion of the unknown processes furnishing contents to experien-
ce, a parcellation concomitant to a partition of the parenchy-
As such it was first studied by Karl Bonhoeffer and
(separately) Karl Kleist in the first World War injured soldiers.
It is since then clear that some of the continuities of the pa-
renchyma (parenchymatuous histocontinuity, water hydrogen-bonding
average percolation, background fields continuity, ionic concen-
tration-dispersion limits, or other) are required for the process
of providing contents to experience, and that if disease par-
titions such crucial continuity (or continuities), then several
experiencings become isolated amid the same parenchymatous volu-
Such physicochemical partitioning has nothing to do
with the blocking of links among mental contents, that could
separate some assemblies of such contents able of behaving as
if one unique experiencing were not having experience of all them.
(For this unrelated problem, an excellent source is Henri F.
Ellemberger's "The Discovery of the Unconscious. The history &
evolution of dynamic psychiatry" of Basic Books, N. York, espe-
cially chapters V -on its context- and VI -on Pierre Janet).
The logical implication is that sharing a functional
parcel of neurocognitive parenchyma can provide contents to one
unique experiencing. This is a most interesting but somehow
relegated part of the subject.
In 1978, notes here say, there were twins sisters united
by the skull (craneopagi) separated in USA, at their (or rather her,
until surgery) age of four years.
If they were not had been possessed of two separate
dural bags, but had one continuous brain gray, we could have expec-
ted the possible detection of shared mental contents. But true
cephalopagi are rare and, even more, searches for this eventual
fact in "skull Siamese" twins.
Does anyone there know more on this particular aspect?
Prof. Mariela Szirko,
<postmaster at neubio.sld.ar>
Centro de Investig. Neurobiologicas, Ministry
of Health & Welfare, Argentine Republic; and Lab. of
Electroneurobiological Res., Hospital "Dr. Jose Tiburcio Borda",
Municipality of Buenos Aires,
Office: Phone/Fax (54 1) 306 -7314
e-mail <postmaster at neubio.gov.ar>
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