The Let's Play Archive

Second Sight

by My Name Is Kaz

Part 4: Fieldwork

In early days after Phrenology was debunked, the prevailing theory was the brain was an "aggregate field" where no specific regions had specific functions and one's brain was more like a homogenous mass that nevertheless still worked altogether to achieve cognition. Studies of mental patients, stroke and tumor patients, and other people with brain damage led to cracks in this theory the size of the lesions they were based on, that eventually grew to demolish the theory altogether. Modern imaging techniques allow us to take pictures of the brain without removing it, allowing a detailed study of lesions in a human brain without the serious ethical problems of probing surgery. Useful as animal studies were for studying normal cognition, paranormal cognition has only so far been reported in humans, and even then without yet repeatable results, or even compelling anecdotal cases.