Personal Identity and Fractured Selves: Perspectives from Philosophy, Ethics, and Neuroscience

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This book brings together some of the best minds in neurology and philosophy to discuss the concept of personal identity and the moral dimensions of treating brain disease and injury. The contributors engage a crucial question: When an individual’s personality changes radically because of disease or injury, should this changed individual be treated as the same person?

Rapid advances in brain science are expanding knowledge of human memory, emotion, and cognition and pointing the way toward new approaches for the prevention and treatment of devastating illnesses and disabilities. Through case studies of Alzheimer disease, frontotemporal dementia, deep brain stimulation, and steroid psychosis, the contributors highlight relevant ethical and social concerns that clinicians, researchers, and ethicists are likely to encounter.

Personal Identity and Fractured Selves represents the first formal collaboration between the Brain Sciences Institute and the Berman Institute of Bioethics, both at the Johns Hopkins University. The book asks neuroscientists and philosophers to address important questions on the topic of personal identity in an effort to engage both fields in fruitful conversation.

Contributors: Samuel Barondes, M.D., University of California, San Francisco; David M. Blass, M.D., Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine; Patrick Duggan, A.B., Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics; Ruth R. Faden, Ph.D., M.P.H., Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics; Michael S. Gazzaniga, Ph.D., University of California, Santa Barbara; Guy M. McKhann, M.D., Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine; John Perry, Ph.D., Stanford University; Carol Rovane, Ph.D., Columbia University; Alan Regenberg, M.Be., Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics; Marya Schechtman, Ph.D., University of Illinois at Chicago; Maura Tumulty, Ph.D., Colgate University

Johns Hopkins University Press

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Editorial Reviews

Metapsychology - Emily Esch

Personal Identity and Fractured Selves should appeal to both general and specialized audiences.

Journal of Clinical Psychiatry - John C. Racy

A good read.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780801893384
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
  • Publication date: 9/4/2009
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 216
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Debra J. H. Mathews, Ph.D., M.A., is the assistant director for science programs for the Berman Institute of Bioethics at Johns Hopkins University. Hilary Bok, Ph.D., is a professor of bioethics and moral and political theory at the Johns Hopkins University and a faculty member at the Berman Institute of Bioethics. She is author of Freedom and Responsibility. Peter V. Rabins, M.D., M.P.H., is a professor of psychiatry, codirector of the Division of Geriatric Psychiatry and Neuropsychiatry, and director of the T. Rowe and Eleanor Price Teaching Service of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He is coauthor of The 36-Hour Day: A Family Guide to Caring for People with Alzheimer Disease, Other Dementias, and Memory Loss in Later Life and coeditor of Treating Dementia: Do We Have a Pill for It?, both published by Johns Hopkins.

Johns Hopkins University Press

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Table of Contents

Preface Guy McKhann McKhann, Guy Ruth R. Faden Faden, Ruth R.

Introduction A "Two Cultures" Phrasebook Debra J. H. Mathews Mathews, Debra J. H. Alan Regenberg Regenberg, Alan Patrick Duggan Duggan, Patrick 1

Pt. I Foundations

1 How Philosophers Think about Persons, Personal Identity, and the Self Maura Tumulty Tumulty, Maura 15

2 Toward a Neurobiology of Personal Identity Peter V. Rabins Rabins, Peter V. David M. Blass Blass, David M. 38

3 Case Studies David M. Blass Blass, David M. 50

Pt. II Philosophers Hold Forth

4 Getting Our Stories Straight: Self-narrative and Personal Identity Marya Schechtman Schechtman, Marya 65

5 Personal Identity and Choice Carol Rovane Rovane, Carol 93

6 Diminished and Fractured Selves John Perry Perry, John 129

Pt. III Neuroscientists Push Back

7 After Locke: Darwin, Freud, and Psychiatric Assessment Samuel Barondes Barondes, Samuel 165

8 The Fictional Self Michzael S. Gazzaniga Gazzaniga, Michzael S. 174

Conclusion: Common Threads Hilary Bok Bok, Hilary Debra J. H. Mathews Mathews, Debra J. H. Peter V. Rabins Rabins, Peter V. 187

References 195

Index 199

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