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The Emotional Brain

The Mysterious Underpinnings of Emotional Life
Paperback Book
Simon & Schuster
March, 1998
In stock now: 
$20.00 CAD
Banyen's Description: 

“Joseph LeDoux is a superb guide to that ultimate frontier in understanding our emotional life, the brain. In The Emotional Brain he shares his own pioneering state-of-the-art research with us in a highly readable, user-friendly fashion. I highly recommend it.” —Daniel Goleman, author of Emotional Intelligence

“Why is it so easy for passions to invade our thoughts, but so hard to gain conscious control over our emotions? Why are emotional memories sometimes so immediate and compelling, and other times ‘repressed’ and only later ‘recovered’ (or are they)? What goes wrong with emotion in emotional disorders? Joseph LeDoux weaves a story about emotion, consciousness, and the brain that guides us through these conundrums and makes sense of them....LeDoux succeeds in unraveling the mysteries of the emotional brain.” —Howard Eichenbaum, Department of Psychology, Boston University

Unlike conscious feelings, emotions originate in the brain at a much deeper level, says LeDoux. The Emotional Brain presents some fascinating findings about our familiar yet little-understood emotions. It is far-reaching in its implications for our understanding of human nature—a surprising and thought-provoking account of the latest research on emotions in neuroscience.

Emotions evolved not as conscious feelings, linguistically differentiated or otherwise, but as brain states and bodily responses. The brain states and bodily responses are the fundamental facts of an emotion, and the conscious feelings are the frills that have added icing to the emotional cake.


Oscar Wilde once said, “It is because Humanity has never known where it was going that it has been able to find its way.” But wouldn’t it be wonderful if we did understand where our emotions were taking us from moment to moment, day to day, and year to year, and why? If the trends toward cognitive-emotional connectivity in the brain are any indication, our brains may, in fact, be moving in this direction.

Publisher’s Description: 

What happens in our brains to make us feel fear, love, hate, anger, joy? Do we control our emotions, or do they control us? Do animals have emotions? How can traumatic experiences in early childhood influence adult behavior, even though we have no conscious memory of them? In The Emotional Brain, Joseph LeDoux investigates the origins of human emotions and explains that many exist as part of complex neural systems that evolved to enable us to survive.

One of the principal researchers profiled in Daniel Goleman's Emotional Intelligence, LeDoux is a leading authority in the field of neural science. In this provocative book, he explores the brain mechanisms underlying our emotions -- mechanisms that are only now being revealed.

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