Two podcasts on neuroplasticity

I’ve got some longer things to come, but I wanted to draw attention to two podcasts on neuroplasticity that I found through Scientific American‘s Mind & Brain blog.

The first podcast is Brain Science Podcast #10 Neuroplasticity, a presentation structured around the book, Train Your Mind, Change Your Brain: How a New Science Reveals Our Extraordinary Potential to Transform Ourselves, by Sharon Begley. Begley is a science writer for The Wall Street Journal, and she builds the book around a discussion of the effects on the brain of meditation. As a summary of the book describes:

Is it really possible to change the structure and function of the brain, and in so doing alter how we think and feel? The answer is a resounding yes. In late 2004, leading Western scientists joined the Dalai Lama at his home in Dharamsala, India, to address this very question–and in the process brought about a revolution in our understanding of the human mind.

The second is an interview with Dr. Norman Doidge, author of The Brain that Changes Itself: Stories of Personal Triumph from the Frontiers of Brain Science. As Ginger Campbell, an emergency physician and the interviewer, describes:

We talk about the obstacles that delayed this important discovery. Dr. Doidge shares the stories of three of the scientists featured in his book: Paul Bach-y-Rita, Edward Taub, and VS Ramachandran. We also talked about how these discoveries might influence both patient care and future research.

I’m new to podcasts as I just bought myself a little iPod shuffle to listen to them on while I work out (and haven’t been doing too much of that with all the physical labour involved in farm-related projects, like building a sandstone wall and getting my veggie garden back under control after it was neglected for three weeks while traveling in the US). Ira Bashkow, an old friend from days with a dissertation reading group at the University of Chicago, suggested it as yet another way to cram information into our aging cortical regions, and I’m looking forward to trying.

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Trained as a cultural anthropologist at the University of Chicago, I have gone on to do fieldwork in Brazil and the United States. I have written one book, Learning Capoeira: Lessons in Cunning from an Afro-Brazilian Art (Oxford, 2005). I have also co-authored and co-edited several, including, with Dr. Daniel Lende, The Encultured Brain: An Introduction to Neuroanthropology (MIT, 2012), and with Dr. Melissa Fisher, Frontiers of Capital: Ethnographic Reflections on the New Economy (Duke, 2006). My research interests include neuroanthropology, psychological anthropology, sport, dance, human rights, neuroscience, phenomenology, economic anthropology, and just about anything else that catches my attention.

2 thoughts on “Two podcasts on neuroplasticity

  1. Thank you so much for your detailed description of two episodes of my Brain Science Podcast. I hope now that you have an iPod you will be able to enjoy some other episodes. I have just finished my first year of podcasting and so far I have posted 26 episodes of the Brain Science Podcast and 15 episodes of my other podcast, Books and Ideas.

    Ginger Campbell, MD

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