Mental Brains

Feb 18, 2021Philosophy/Ethics, Tech0 comments

Hemispherectomy” the operation where half the brain is removed sounds too radical to ever consider, much less perform.

In the last century, however, surgeons have performed it hundreds of times for disorders uncontrollable in any other way ….

 

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/strange-but-true-when-half-brain-better-than-whole/

 

In this post the dialogue is realised by an interaction of virtual characters, for more information please check the page “Virtual characters

Cho

OK, I’ve read your draft. 😊
Again: I’m not an expert in philosophy or psychology, so you’ve got to explain some things.

Today 11:34   

Cho

I mean, both to me here and now, and in the paper, so the readers can follow along

Today 11:34   

Julia

Sure, I’ll try my best.. ☺️

Today 11:32  

Cho

So, the “identity theory”: mental events are brain events                              

Today 11:36   

Julia

They argue it has to be the same brain process for each mental process.

So if I say that we both believe something, then we have to have the same brain processes …

Today 11:36  

Cho

… and that is nonsense of course 🙅🏻‍♀️                                                                 

Today 11:37

Cho

Not only do different people have different brains, an individual brain also changes during your lifetime                                                       

Today 11:37

Julia

That’s exactly the kind of information I needed!
Can you elaborate on that?.

Today 11:38   

Cho

Sure ! 

There are records of people with vastly different brains that still have mostly normal behavior and cognitive abilities                                                

Today 11:40  

Cho

Like the patients who have undergone hemispherectomy as children to cure certain forms of epilepsy.

Today 11:44   

Julia

I’m not a neurosurgeon, but I’ve had greek in highschool … 🤔 

“hemispherectomy” means something like “cutting away half the sphere”? 

Today 11:44   

 

Cho

Well done with the greek!👍🏻 That’s exactly what it means.                   

Today 11:44

Julia

But it can’t mean removing half the brain, right? 😰

Today 21:44   

Cho

Oh yes it does! We can remove half the brain, generally in very young children, which then develop relatively normally.                   

Today 11:45   

Julia

I can’t believe this! Half the brain! 🧠 😳

Today 11:46   

Cho

Yes, and “relatively normally” means that most impairments are mainly due to the illness, not the surgery itself.                                                                                           

Today 11:46   

Julia

We can remove half a brain … with no ill effects? 🤨

Today 11:47

Cho

Well, that does sound a bit too good to be true😊😊… but more or less, yes!

If the children are still young, the remaining hemisphere is adaptable enough to compensate for the missing half.

Today 11:48   

 

Julia

That’s … wow … that’s amazing!  ☺️🤗
And I see why that would be a problem for the theory ….

Today 11:47

Cho

Yes! they think and feel just like everyone else, but with a completely different brain structure.                                             

Today 11:48   

Julia

So we can’t point out one-to-one correspondences with such large neurodiversity. 

Today 11:47

Cho

That would be a problem indeed. Still, I saw there was another very similar position that could accommodate this …                                        

Today 11:48   

Julia

Could I first revise this part and then get back to you?

Today 11:47

Cho

Sure thing! ☺️                                                                                                 

Today 11:48   

… Continue to read the conversation between
Julia and Cho on Saturday 27th … 

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