Descartes' Error: Emotion, Reason and the Human Brain


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This text takes the form of a conversation between the author and imaginary listener. It journeys from the story of Phineas Gage, the 19th-century case of behavioural change that followed brain damage, to the contemporary recreation of Gage's brain; and from the doubts of young neurologist to a testable hypothesis concerning the emotions and their fundamental role in rational human behaviour. Drawing on his experiences with neurological patients affected by brain damage, Damasio shows how the absence of emotion and feeling ...

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