Robert Poynton
A cartoony hand-drawn portrait of Robert Poynton
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The locational fetish

October 1, 2012 – 1 min read


Why is it that people get so excited about knowing which bit of someone’s brain lights up when they are engaged in some activity or other? It doesn’t explain anything. In fact I think it is dangerously misleading. The brain is massively interconnected, in a way that we cannot even begin to imagine, let alone map, so the whole idea of locating higher order capabilities, or thoughts, or emotional states with specific physical locations is simplistic in the extreme. It’s a kind of modern day phrenology with MRI scanners. It is almost entirely nonsense and the popularity with it is embraced gives science a bad name.
Stop it. Please.



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