A Blog For the Week: The Neurocritic

A blog of note: The Neurocritic. Just another great blog that keeps an eye on science and trends in scientific thought.

The full name of the blog is: The Neurocritic: Deconstructing the most sensationalistic recent findings in Human Brain Imaging, Cognitive Neuroscience, and Psychopharmacology. Neurocritic seems to specialize in keeping the “bio” part of biopsychosocial in its proper place.

Recent posts include, A Brain is Worth A Thousand Words (June 7):

Brain images are believed to have a particularly persuasive influence on the public perception of research on cognition. Three experiments are reported showing that presenting brain images with articles summarizing cognitive neuroscience research resulted in higher ratings of scientific reasoning for arguments made in those articles

Another post: Oh, great. Now we know what the right parahippocampal gyrus does. (June 3)

There was nothing very interesting in Katherine P. Rankin’s study of sarcasm — at least, nothing worth your important time. All she did was use an M.R.I. to find the place in the brain where the ability to detect sarcasm resides. But then, you probably already knew it was in the right parahippocampal gyrus.

Blog carnival Encephalon.

The Neurocritic also features, as of May 27th, the 46th inception of the blog carnival Encephalon, a neuroscience blog carnival. The carnival includes:

The persistence of racism even among the well-intentioned

The Neurocritic has a past post, Present Tense, that reviews the literature on neuroimaging studies of mindfulness-based meditation.

Next, Vaughan from Mind Hacks writes about the rare phenomenon of ‘supernumerary phantom limbs’ in Phantom extra limbs.

Next up are Brain Games or Drugs for Cognitive Enhancement, written by Sharp Brains guest columnist Pascale Michelon, Ph.D. She discusses the exciting recent finding by Jaeggi et al. (2008): Improving Fluid Intelligence With Training on Working Memory. It’s a growing field.

Speaking of which, Dr. Shock writes a critical piece about the pitfalls of supportive psychotherapy in Supportive Psychotherapy mostly Novice Pilots Flying In The Dark Without Maps.

That last one wins for best post title — along with doing a nice job of describing some therapeutic technique, comes to the shocking conclusion that doing psychotherapy actually requires training, skills, and patience.

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