The Man who Tasted Shapes

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MIT Press, 2003 - MEDICAL - 274 pages
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The ten people in one million who are synaesthetes are born into a world where one sensation (e.g. sound) conjures up one or more others (e.g. taste or colour). Although scientists have known about synaesthesia for two hundred years, until recently the condition has remained a mystery. Extensive experiments with more than forty synaesthetes led Richard Cytowic to an explanation of synaesthesia that emphasized the primacy of emotion over reason. In this medical detective adventure he reveals the brain to be an active explorer and offers a new view of what it means to be human that turns upside down conventional ideas about reason, emotion, and who we are.

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User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

When a curious-minded neurologist meets a neurological curiosity—in this case, a neighbor who experiences tastes as physical shapes—the result, at least here, is a mixed bag: a fascinating ... Read full review

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User Review  - Sosiles - LibraryThing

It was very interesting and the main narrative was engaging. Towards the end though he goes off on this tangent about 'the primacy of emotion over reason' that heads straight into New Age territory ... Read full review

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About the author (2003)

Richard E. Cytowic, M.D., founded Capitol Neurology, a private clinic in Washington, D.C., and teaches at George Washington University Medical Center. He is the author of "Synesthesia: A Union of the Senses" and "The Man Who Tasted Shapes, " both published by the MIT Press.

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