Books on the brain and memory

James Teo james at
Thu Jun 13 04:54:59 EST 2002

"khun_roy" <khun_royMUST_TAKE_OUT at> wrote in message news:<Xns922BBF19BF4A8khunroy at>...
> James,
> Thanks for your response.
> I think I need to be a little more specific.  I'd like something 
> scientifically oriented which provides a "map" of the brain and how it 
> works (and some on its pathology).  Perhaps the type of text that one would 
> find in an upper level biology or similar class.
> I'm reasonably intelligent, a former college professor and now a software 
> consultant for the last 15 years. Currently I'm reading, for example, 
> Clinical Neurology, 5th Ed.  It's pretty easy other than having to wade 
> through all the new, to me, vocabulary.  But, I have little context of the 
> greater picture.

Ah, helps alot. Sorry, but I took you for a layperson who randomly
picked up Greenfield's book on a bargain sale and decides that he/she
wants to read more.
If you can understand 5th edition, CLinical neurology, than you're
would have little problems with the books I recommended, but they are
not of the scope I think you want as they are more focused on mind,
consciousness and memory rather than the brain and all its functions
(and misfunctions).
> I'm not interested in soft, touchy-feely books.

Forget Oliver Sacks then.

> Would you still recommend Damasio and/or Schacter?

I would still recommend both but consider reading Zigmond (as
recommended by another poster) or the following first:

Essentials of Neural Science
Kandel, Schwartz, Jessell
Now this is not the 1400 page monstrosity that most neuroscientists
have but the slimmed down version which focuses on a few core topics
and only reaches 500 pages. Suited for undergraduate college level
understanding of neuroscience and the brain. Kandel as you probably
are aware is a Nobel laureate from 2000.

Synaptic Self: How Our Brains Become Who We Are
by Joseph Ledoux
This is a very new book which I am reading and like alot, but I don't
know how much you like the bits in which he discusses philosophy of
mind, but his coverage of behavioural neuroscience and the neuron is
very good.

Also, as if you like the style and scope of Clinical Neurology, you
should look at other cheap textbooks geared towards medical students
who need to know core stuff about neurology and neuroscience but not
in excessive detail.

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