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Iain McGilchrist: The Divided Brain (A TED Talk)

TED talks are as snackable and delicious as cupcakes, aren’t they?

If you’re here, you are likely interested in the junctures of left and right: creativity and rationality, art and commerce, and (perhaps) the neuroscience behind the divided brain theories. Perhaps even in the meeting of frosting and cake!

TED Talk: The Divided Brain

I enjoy hearing new points of view and information (that’s the right half of my brain scanning) and learning more about the world and how we operate within it. All that focus is my left hemisphere. My frontal lobe is now trying to tell me I’ve watched enough TED today, but I can’t resist sharing this many-layered presentation, The Divided Brain, by Iain McGilchrist about our brain hemispheres and the latest theories on how they work.

According to his bio on TED,

Iain McGilchrist is a psychiatrist and writer. Before he came to medicine, he was a literary scholar — and his work on the brain is shaped by a deep questioning of the role of art and culture. As his official bio puts it: “He is committed to the idea that the mind and brain can be understood only by seeing them in the broadest possible context, that of the whole of our physical and spiritual existence, and of the wider human culture in which they arise — the culture which helps to mould, and in turn is moulded by, our minds and brains.”

His deep background in Western culture is evidenced in this talk and wonderfully illustrated by RSA. If you haven’t watch them “cartooning” a presentation before, you’re in for a treat. You may want to stop the video and read the details in several places.

Do we live in a world that has become unbalanced in favor of the left brain while the living, breathing, real right brain has lost its place? What does that mean to art and artists and creatives of all types? Will all future creativity be directed towards video games for the left brain?

If you find this yummy TED “cupcake” of interest, you may want to check out the whole cake! See Iain McGilchrist’s book, The Master and His Emissary: The Divided Brain and the Making of the Western World.