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Tip: To review the bibliography…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

It is always useful to review an article’s bibliography and references to get a deeper understanding of the psychoanalytic concepts and theoretical framework in it.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Raz, A. Wolfson, J.B. (2010). From Dynamic Lesions to Brain Imaging of Behavioral Lesions: Alloying the Gold of Psychoanalysis with the Copper of Suggestion. Neuropsychoanalysis, 12(1):5-18.

(2010). Neuropsychoanalysis, 12(1):5-18

Target Article

From Dynamic Lesions to Brain Imaging of Behavioral Lesions: Alloying the Gold of Psychoanalysis with the Copper of Suggestion Related Papers

Amir Raz and Joanna B. Wolfson

Contemporary studies in the cognitive neuroscience of attention and suggestion shed new light on psychoanalytic concepts of yore. Findings from neuroimaging studies, for example, seem to revive the notion of dynamic lesions—focal brain changes undetectable by anatomical scrutiny. With technologies such as brain imaging and reversible brain lesion, some findings from modern biological psychiatry seem to converge with nineteenth-century psychiatry, reminiscent of the old masters. In particular, suggestion has been shown to modulate specific neural activity in the human brain. Here we show that “behavioral lesions”—the influence that words exert on focal brain activity—may constitute the twenty-first-century appellation of “dynamic lesions.” While recent research results involving suggestion seem to partially support Freudian notions, correlating psychoanalysis with its brain substrates remains difficult. We elucidate the incipient role of cognitive neuroscience, including the relative merits and inherent limitations of imaging the living human brain, in explaining psychoanalytic concepts.

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