Oliver Sacks

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Neurologist Oliver Sacks tells stories of people who manage to navigate the world and communicate, despite losing what many consider indispensable senses and abilities: the power of speech, the ability to recognize faces, the sense of three-dimensional space, the ability to read, and to see. In The Mind’s Eye he considers the fundamental questions: How do we see? How do we think?


Oliver Sacks

Comments [7]

Jessica from Japan

Oliver Sacks mentioned a memoir by a John Howard, or Hauer, or Hower, or Howler. Obviously I didn't catch the name, but would like to read this book. Can you help me?

Oct. 29 2010 02:36 AM
Christine from Brooklyn

Thank you Maria,
Finally after four years someone is making sense to me. I have a way to gauge my symptoms, there is a chair in my room that has several vertical slats that run the back of the chair about ten inches long and an inch apart. If they are waving to me, I know it's going to be a tough day. By waving I mean they look like I am looking at them through hot pavement Does this make sense?

Oct. 27 2010 01:41 PM
maria gulinello from NY

Everybody occassionally feels like they are moving when other things are moving by us even though we are stable. Most people have had this feeling in a subway or train station for example, when the other train pulls away, because objects moving across our visual fields is one of the cues for motion and in this circumstance, most of the other cues for motion detection are not present. In people without brain injuries (I hestiate to say normal) other cues to motion also include size difference as objects move and comparison of the objects from both eyes (which requires intact inter-hemispheric communication) and several other things. Christine from Brooklyn has either had damaged communication between hemispheres, or damage to other parts of the brain that has made this particular type of cue for motion take perceptual precedence over the other cues, perhaps because of the damage to brain regions that "do" those perceptual tasks, or because of damage in the long axons that connect between brain regions (most likely to be damaged in TBI).

Oct. 27 2010 12:51 PM
Edward from brooklyn

I'm wondering if Mr. Sacks is versed in the phenomenon known as Depersonalization Disorder (also known as brain fog among other things). The sensation of one's physical and psychological senses being alienated from one another, as if dreaming. I've tried discussing this with multiple doctors but few will engage the in a clinical discussion about it.

Oct. 27 2010 12:49 PM
Christine from Brooklyn

I was hit by a truck while walking across the street and i have a traumatic brain injury, since then I have had visual vestibular problems. For example if my frame of vision is filled with a moving bus I feel like I am moving too! The doctors told me it is retinal extinction phenomena or something like that. I got vision therapy at suny optometric but still no one has explained to me how the brain injury made my vision make me thing I am moving or falling.
Can you help me?

Oct. 27 2010 12:26 PM
Audrey Tumbarello from Brooklyn

I have a good friend who is a famous copper enamalist, who is now blind. Despite this, she does wonderful drawings, which she cannot see. Could you comment on this?

Oct. 27 2010 12:14 PM
Rick from UES

i heart Oliver!

Oct. 27 2010 12:10 PM

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