Michael Merzenich on Brain Plasticity

One of the greatest forces in nature is the brain's power to selectively rewire based on our learning and experience. Dr. Mersenich does an excellent job clarifying how this process is (a)typically carried out and stresses the direct influence this has on our cognitive abilities, namely the way we carry out the complex process of using language. Current research outcomes on treatment are presented and future import discussed.

The implications for city life alone are enough to make me think twice about the sensory environments I put myself in: blaring train stations, classrooms and work spaces flooded with hypervigilant fluorescent lights, that damned civil engineers' practical joke Boston calls Cleveland Circle. The damage this does on developed brains is bad enough, but consider also how these environments continue to frustrate and harm already abnormally functioning people.

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