Cover of The Human Brain
Book 55 Biology 1964
The Kite That Won the Revolution A Short History of Biology
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Asimov fan
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Target reader

In this remarkably clear and fascinating work, the noted scientist and writer Isaac Asimov investigates just how the human brain organizes and controls the total functioning of the individual. Magnificently illustrated with the line drawings of Anthony Ravielli, The Human Brain is intended as a companion book to the author’s preceding volume, The Human Body.

“Asimov deals not only with the physical structure of the two giant cerebral hemispheres which distinguish us from other animal life, but with the brain’s great potential, the full extent of which we have yet to explore. The functioning of hormones, glands, the nervous system, our senses and reflexes—all controlled by the brain—are explained with the clarity for which this author is noted. This superior companion volume deserves to stand on your library shelf alongside The Human Body.”—The Saturday Review

This book is a companion piece to The Human Body, this time focusing on the various anatomic structures which govern the body’s functions: hormones (and the organs that secrete them), the nervous system, and the senses. Asimov was rather less comfortable in writing this book than he was with the earlier one, because he himself knew less about the subject. There are, indeed, a few places where a careful observer can detect the author’s own unfamiliarity with what he’s talking about.

Still, it’s a good book. It covers the ground quite thoroughly and does a good job of it. The illustrations here are done in the same fashion as in The Human Body, but since there is comparatively little anatomy in this volume, they do not prove to be quite the problem they are in the earlier book. Perhaps The Human Brain isn’t quite as good as its companion—and there seems little point it reading it without having read The Human Body—but it’s still worthwhile and useful.

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