Dean Burnett

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Dean Burnett

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Dean Burnett is a neuroscientist and psychiatry lecturer at the Centre for Medical Education at Cardiff University and is the author of the Guardian’s most-read science blog, Brain Flapping. He lives in Cardiff.

The following is from his website:

This is the website for Doctor Dean Burnett, neuroscientist, lecturer, author, blogger, media pundit, science communicator, comedian and numerous other things, depending on who’s asking and what they need.

Although employed as a tutor and lecturer by the Cardiff University Centre for Medical Education in his day job, Dean is best known for his satirical science column ‘Brain Flapping‘ at the Guardian, and his internationally acclaimed debut book ‘The Idiot Brain‘.

Dean Burnett was born and raised i
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Dean Burnett Found my missing glove.
Still looking for my missing hand.…more
Found my missing glove.
Still looking for my missing hand.(less)
Dean Burnett Firstly, the premise that this question is based on, that all human action is driven by basic survival needs, is extremely reductive and a drastic ove…moreFirstly, the premise that this question is based on, that all human action is driven by basic survival needs, is extremely reductive and a drastic oversimplification of how the human brain works. While such impulses and drives are indeed still in there at fundamental levels, the human brain has evolved to such complexity that we can be motivated by far more abstract, lofty goals. And these can be things that, objectively, work against our survival. Consider that anorexia exists; the brain is capable of deciding that looking thin is more important than eating, so survival instincts aren't as dominant as implied. And even if you want to retain a cynical view of human nature, the bulk of theories I've seen argue that human intelligence occurred due to our need to be friendly and sociable with increasingly large groups and communities, so our brains evolved to be sociable and community minded, so even at the most basic level we care about others and the society we belong. If you want to take it to extremes, because we instinctively want to belong to and please the group we identify with, sacrificing for the group *is* selfish, in a strange way. (less)
Average rating: 3.96 · 7,658 ratings · 889 reviews · 9 distinct worksSimilar authors
Idiot Brain: What Your Head...

3.98 avg rating — 6,332 ratings — published 2016 — 21 editions
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Happy Brain: Where Happines...

3.80 avg rating — 936 ratings — published 2018 — 25 editions
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Why Your Parents Are Drivin...

4.08 avg rating — 235 ratings3 editions
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Psycho-Logical: Why Mental ...

3.92 avg rating — 151 ratings6 editions
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The Emotional Brain

4.50 avg rating — 2 ratings
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Emotional Ignorance

liked it 3.00 avg rating — 1 rating2 editions
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Dean Burnett Collection 3 B...

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Idiot brain, my stroke, doc...

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Happy brain, my stroke, doc...

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More books by Dean Burnett…

Psycho – Logical: Launch and publicity appearances

Dean Burnett’s new book, the print edition of Psycho-Logical, is published in the UK (and Netherlands) on February 4th. In the run up to that, he will be doing as many talks, media appearances, articles and performances as possible. Pretty much all of these are guaranteed to be online, what with the pandemic still raging, […]
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Published on January 15, 2021 09:28

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Dean’s Recent Updates

Dean Burnett is now friends with Omar Dahi
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Dean Burnett answered Sahar Mohammed's question: Dean Burnett
Sorry about the slow reply, only seen this question today, for some reason.

Neuroscience is the scientific study of the brain in general, how it works, what the underlying processes are, what bits do what, and so on. Obviously, this covers a very wide See Full Answer
Dean Burnett rated a book liked it
This is the Way the World Ends by Keith Taylor
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It's by no means a bad book. It's well written, a lot of interesting ideas are included and explored well, it reads very believably (if you overlook the whole 'zombie apocalypse' thing), and shows a very realistic portrayal of our modern wold in the ...more
Dean Burnett rated a book it was amazing
The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers
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It's a sci-fi, set in the distant future where Earth has been ruined, and humans are a scattered, fractious, unremarkable species in a society of superior aliens.

And yet, somehow, it's a fun, engaging, and immensely enjoyable story about a group of
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A Libertarian Walks Into a Bear by Matthew Hongoltz-Hetling
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Deserves 5 stars purely for the sheer breadth of subjects covered and the amount of work that's gone into detailing this true-life tail of what happens when impassioned-but-fringe political ideology encounters the real world, in a community where the ...more
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The Last Human by Zack  Jordan
The Last Human
by Zack Jordan (Goodreads Author)
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A fun read overall. The characters are largely original and engaging, the world building is effective and interesting, and the sense of scale aimed for is truly impressive, more so than most deep sci-fi novels.
It's not without faults though. The plot
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Why Your Parents Are Driving You Up the Wall and What To Do A... by Dean Burnett
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More of Dean's books…
“What have we learned so far about the human brain? It messes with memories, it jumps at shadows, it's terrified of harmless things, it screws with our diet, our sleeping, our movement, it convinces us we're brilliant when we're not, it makes up half the stuff we perceive, it gets us to do irrational things when emotional, it causes us to make friends incredibly quickly and turn on them in an instant.
A worrying list. What's even more worrying, it does all of this when it's working properly.”
Dean Burnett, The Idiot Brain: A Neuroscientist Explains What Your Head Is Really Up To

“The brain apparently thinks logic is a precious resource to be used only sparingly.”
Dean Burnett, Idiot Brain: What Your Head Is Really Up To

“I'm also part of the great conspiracy of global scientists to promote the myths of climate change, evolution, vaccination, and a spherical earth. After all, there's nobody on earth wealthier and more powerful than scientists, and they can't risk losing this exalted position by people finding out how the world really works.”
Dean Burnett, Idiot Brain: What Your Head Is Really Up To

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