In Seeing Through Illusions, renowned scientist Richard Gregory explores what visual illusions can tell us about how our brains perceive the world. Looking at optical tricks and many other extraordinary phenomena, Gregory explains how scientists use these anomalies to peel back the normal processes of perception, and to reveal how the brain performs the remarkable feat of representing the real world with the kind of richness and accuracy which we experience--and take for granted--every day. And these visual illusions not only tell us about how our brain works, but they also reveal the brain's evolutionary past. Traces of earlier stages remain buried within our brains like stratified layers, laid down through evolutionary time, and Gregory shows how the study of different kinds of illusions reveals glimpses of these layers. Interweaving science with reflections on art and philosophy, fascinating psychological case-studies, and some amazing visual phenomena, this book addresses questions about our brains that have puzzled scientists and philosophers for centuries.
Richard Gregory is Emeritus Professor of Neuropsychology at the University of Bristol. He is the author of Eye and Brain and Mirrors in Mind, and the editor of The Oxford Companion to the Mind. He was founder and president of the first hands-on science center in Britain and "godfather" of the Mind Zone at the Millennium Dome. He lives in the U.K.