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Brothers, L. (2002). The Trouble with Neurobiological Explanations of Mind. Psychoanal. Inq., 22(5):857-870.

(2002). Psychoanalytic Inquiry, 22(5):857-870

The Trouble with Neurobiological Explanations of Mind

Leslie Brothers, M.D.

Neuroist literature dresses psychological narratives up with neuroscience facts. But there are fundamental differences between the languages of the mind and the brain, so ad hoe devices paper over the gaps. These include taking words out of their proper contexts; equating the conceptual architecture of psychology with the neural architecture of the brain; mimicking the format of scientific research papers; and exalting paradox to produce a thrilling sense of mystery. In addition there are outright errors that are hard for nonneuroscientists to detect. Neuroism is a bid for status by nonnatural science disciplines such as psychoanalysis.

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