La nascita della mente
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La nascita della mente

3.93 of 5 stars 3.93  ·  rating details  ·  84 ratings  ·  15 reviews
Il numero dei geni umani individuati è molto più basso del previsto: come può un insieme così ristretto di geni produrre la complessità strabiliante del cervello umano? Come è possibile che quel minuscolo 0,6% di Dna di differenza possa generare due forme viventi così diverse l’una dall’altra come uno scimpanzé e un cucciolo di Homo sapiens? Nell’era post-genomica, mentre...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published 2008 by Codice Edizioni (first published January 28th 1963)
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Mark Longo
How can a paltry 30,000 genes code for the production of a human being with its trillions of cells, each cell itself an exquisitely complex assembly of interacting organelles, microstructures and molecules? It would seem there wouldn't be enough information contained in such a small number of instructions. Marcus does a masterful job explaining how this so called "gene deficit" is simply a result of thinking of genes the wrong way. The genome is not a blueprint or otherwise static list of instru...more
This book explores brain development, using examples from neuroscience, behavioral psychology, and genetics. There are some interesting case studies involving babies and their flawed perception of the world at early ages. Also, there were surprisingly barbaric neuroscience experiments investigating the development of the visual cortex in kittens. If you're interested in brain development, this is worth reading. It's a smooth and easy read, which highlights various research efforts on the subject...more
Lots of fluff without much new information.

Some gross errors that diminish the book,
like talking about "the genes for gender",
pardon me, but while some languages may have "gender"
people and other animals have sex.

I'm not surprised that errors like this are made,
but rather there seems to be no fact checker or editor to clean up the messes the author makes.

The author talks a lot about "identical twins",
and how they're not really identical.

True, that's because they are not really identical,
they ar...more
Colin Mckenna
This is the first time I have read a nuanced, enlightened explanation of the nature/nurture debate. Usually the writer on this topic is in one camp or the other, or the explanation is very reductive. Marcus covers many shades of gray, and though there is no satisfyingly clean answer, he never insults the reader by pandering to oversimplified theories. It almost seems like there is a waltz between the environment and our DNA, with one partner leading and then the other, to suit the moment. I can...more
Lots of fluff and not a lot of new information? Huh, one of the things I liked about this book is that it DID NOT add in a bunch of fluff. At less than 200 pages for the main part of the book, it's quite concise.

He looks at lot of the claims that because we have so few genes or that because the brain is so plastic that there can't be anything innate. He shows how genes play a developmental role in the brain and how they are necessary for every day brain functioning.

He also shows how the capaci...more
Sam Chittenden
This book was the first scientific book I read that I actually enjoyed. I read it for a 9th grade book report (you’re reading it now), and it wasn't just some professor rambling on for hours. It is a relatively short read at 189 pages (not including glossary and references), and is very informative.

The first couple of chapters explain how genes work and doesn't talk much about the mind. After Marcus finishes explaining genes, he starts explaining how the brain itself works (with a chapter-long e...more
Un buon saggio sul cervello come organo prodotto dall'evoluzione e dal prodotto di un piccolo numero di geni.
Di difficoltà abbastanza alta, non è consigliato ai non specialisti, o comunque a chiunque non abbia già più di una infarinatura in neurologia, genetica, biologia molecolare, cibernetica.
The title is an exaggeration. The book discusses some recent research of how brain and mind develops, but the truth is that we still do not know much about this complex process. If you want to find a coherent picture of mind development or a grand theory, you will be disappointed.
Abdulla Al-shammari
Perfect introduction to genes for the non specialist. The flow of the book is smooth and it keeps you engaged. Will read more books by this author for sure as he has that rare gift of simplifying complex ideas.
CR Reading
Although focused on the gene expression side, the latter part in particular has a rather well balanced nature/nurture discussion, copiously researched and accessible for the "non-neuroscientist" reader.
Dec 17, 2008 Daniela marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Started it a while ago but had to drop it, I had too many things to do at my lab. However, I hope to pick it up again soon!
Scientific but the concepts are easily understood even if the detailed science is better if you have a biology background.
m. soria
surprisingly quick read for such a big topic, but a great primer for venturing into evolution and the mind.
my PI asked me to read this for my neuroscience job this summer. easy to read, interesting science
This is my introduction to genes. I think I made a good choice with this author.
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Gary Marcus is an award-wining Professor of Psychology at New York University and director of the NYU Center for Child Language. He has written three books about the origins and nature of the human mind, including Kluge (2008, Houghton Mifflin/Faber), and The Birth of the Mind (Basic Books, 2004, translated into 6 languages). He is also the editor of The Norton Psychology Reader, and the author of...more
More about Gary F. Marcus...
Norton Psychology Reader Kluge: The Haphazard Construction of the Human Mind The Algebraic Mind: Integrating Connectionism and Cognitive Science Overregularization In Language Acquisition

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