I Know What You're Thinking: Brain Imaging and Mental Privacy

I Know What You're Thinking: Brain Imaging and Mental Privacy

by Sarah D. Richmond, Geraint Rees, Sarah J. L. Edwards
     
 

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Since the 1980s, MRI scanners have told us much about brain function and played an important role in the clinical diagnosis of a number of conditions - both in the brain and the rest of the body. Their routine use has made the diagnosis of brain tumours and brain damage both quicker and more accurate. However, some neuroscientific advances, in particular those that

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Overview

Since the 1980s, MRI scanners have told us much about brain function and played an important role in the clinical diagnosis of a number of conditions - both in the brain and the rest of the body. Their routine use has made the diagnosis of brain tumours and brain damage both quicker and more accurate. However, some neuroscientific advances, in particular those that relate specifically to the mind have provoked excitement and discussion in a number of disciplines. One of the most thought provoking developments in recent neuroscience has been the progress made with 'mind-reading'. There seems nothing more private than one's thoughts, some of which we might choose to share with others, and some not. Yet, until now, little has been published on the particular issue of privacy in relation to 'brain' or 'mind' reading.

I know what you're thinking provides a fascinating, interdisciplinary account of the neuroscientific evidence on 'mind reading', as well as a thorough analysis of both legal and moral accounts of privacy. It brings together leading academics from the fields of psychology, neuroscience, philosophy, and law. The book considers such issues as the use of imaging to detect awareness in those considered to be in a vegetative state. It looks at issues of mental imaging and national security, the neurobiology of violence, and issues regarding diminished responsibility in criminals, and thus reduced punishment. It also considers how the use of neuroimaging can and should be regulated.

Providing a ground breaking exploration of how brain imaging technologies can throw light on our mental capacities, states, and acts, this is an important new book for psychologists, neuroscientists, bioethicists, philosophers, and lawyers.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This is an exceptional and enlightening new book on the ethical, philosophical, legal, and medical implications of emerging neurological "mindreading" technologies. It is a great read and I highly recommend it." —DOODY'S

Doody's Review Service
Reviewer: Michael Joel Schrift, DO, MA (University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine)
Description: This is an outstanding new book covering the ethical, philosophical, political, and legal implications and ramifications of emerging brain imaging technologies. Brain imaging technologies are beginning to allow us (at this point in a very basic way) to monitor and predict with a fairly high degree of accuracy what an individual is perceiving, thinking about, and remembering. This potentiality has understandably given rise to concerns about privacy issues concerning even our own thoughts and feelings! Written and edited by internationally recognized authors/researchers in the fields of neuroscience, psychiatry, psychology, bioethics (neuroethics), and the law, this exceptional book is a welcome addition to the field.
Purpose: The purpose, according to the editors, is to describe the "connection between neuroscientific developments in penetrating the human mind and the privacy of individuals." Indeed, the editors and chapter authors have produced a very informative and fascinating new book.
Audience: The targeted audience, as noted by the editors, is psychologists, sociologists, neuroscientists, bioethicists, philosophers, and lawyers. Psychiatrists and neurologists would also benefit from reading this book.
Features: Part I (including the introductory chapter) focuses on more fundamental issues such as the social brain hypothesis, the applications of brain imaging technology to "mindreading," and predicting human behavior from brain structure. The medical applications of mindreading through brain imaging is reviewed in the second section with interesting chapters on neuroimaging of nonresponsive patients, evaluating pain experiences in noncommunicative patients, and the possibilities and limitations of using brain imaging technologies in psychiatry. Part III contains very eye-opening chapters on the neurobiology of violence and its legal implications, diminished capacity and punishment in light of developments in neuroimaging and neuroscience, and national security concerns potentially overriding privacy rights through neuroimaging technologies. The final section centers on the ethical and philosophical implications of this emerging technology, specifically focusing on issues of consent, privacy, and dignity. This is a scholarly book with each chapter ending with timely and relevant citations of the scientific literature.
Assessment: This is an exceptional and enlightening new book on the ethical, philosophical, legal, and medical implications of emerging neurological "mindreading" technologies. It is a great read and I highly recommend it.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780199596492
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
Publication date:
09/29/2012
Pages:
288
Product dimensions:
6.90(w) x 9.70(h) x 0.80(d)

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