Brain on display | Science News

ADVERTISEMENT

REAL SCIENCE. REAL NEWS.

Help us keep you informed.

Support Science News.


The Science Life

Brain on display

Nancy Kanwisher goes where few other neuroscientists dare to in public outreach

By
4:06pm, April 27, 2015
Nancy Kanwisher’s newly shaved head

NOTEWORTHY  Brain regions involved in certain tasks (colors) are illustrated on neuroscientist Nancy Kanwisher’s newly shaved head.

Studying the human brain requires grandiose thinking, but rarely do actual theatrical skills come into play. In her latest stint as a video star, MIT neuroscientist Nancy Kanwisher does not buzz saw her skull open to give viewers a glimpse of her brain. But she does perhaps the next best thing: She clips off her shoulder-length gray hair and shaves her head on camera.

Kanwisher’s smooth, bald head then becomes a canvas for graduate student and artist Rosa Lafer-Sousa, who meticulously draws in the brain’s wrinkles — the sulci and the gyri that give rise to thoughts, memories and behaviors. All the while, Kanwisher provides a voice-over describing which areas of the brain recognize faces, process language and even think about what another person is thinking.

The video is the latest in Kanwisher’s occasional online series, Nancy’s Brain Talks. Pithy, clever and cleanly produced, the more than two

This article is only available to Science News subscribers. Already a subscriber? Log in now. Or subscribe today for full access.

Get Science News headlines by e-mail.

More from Science News

From the Nature Index Paid Content