As a career sociologist I ?rst became interested in neurosociology around 1987 when a graduate student lent me Michael Gazzaniga's The Social Brain. Ifthe biological human brain was really social, I thought sociologists and their students should be the ?rst, not the last, to know. As I read on I found little of the clumsy reductionism of the earlier biosociologists whom I had learned to see as the arch- emy of our ?eld. Clearly, reductionism does exist among many neuroscientists. But I also found some things that were very social and quite relevant for sociology. After reading Descarte's Error by Antonio Damasio, I learned how some types of emotion were necessary for rational thought - a very radical innovation for the long-honored "objective rationalist. " I started inserting some things about split-brain research into my classes, mispronouncing terms like amygdala and being corrected by my s- dents. That instruction helped me realize how much we professors needed to catch up with our students. I also wrote a review of Leslie Brothers' Fridays Footprint: How Society Shapes the Human Mind. I thought if she could write so well about social processes maybe I could attempt to do something similar in connection with my ?eld. For several years I found her an e-mail partner with a wonderful sense of humor. She even retrieved copies of her book for the use of my graduate students when I had assigned it for a seminar.
av David Franks
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