Limit search to available items
Book Cover
Author Leblanc, Richard, 1949- author

Title Fearful asymmetry : Bouillaud, Dax, Broca, and the localization of language, Paris 1825-1879 / Richard Leblanc
Published Montreal ; Kingston ; London ; Chicago : McGill-Queen's University Press, 2017


Description 1 online resource
Contents Cover -- FEARFUL ASYMMETRY -- Title -- Copyright -- Contents -- Tables and Figures -- Acknowledgments -- Preface -- Author's Note -- PART ONE A Universe of Wonder within Our Tiny Globe -- 1 Science Must Begin with Myth -- 2 Gall and Flourens: Paris and Vienna, 1810-1824 -- 3 Jean-Baptiste Bouillaud: Paris, 1825-1848 -- PART TWO Descartes's Skull -- 4 Louis-Pierre Gratiolet: La Société d'anthropologie de Paris, 1859 -- 5 Auburtin, Broca, and Tan: The Difference between Zero and One, February 1861 -- 6 The Great Regions of the Mind, August 1861 -- 7 Montpellier and the Métropole, March 1863 -- 8 Uncertainty and Adversity, April-July 1863 -- 9 Infamy and Chicanery, 1864 -- PART THREE A Singular Law -- 10 A Terse and Disdainful Report, December 1864- April 1865 -- 11 An Inexplicable Mystery -- PART FOUR The Critical Stage -- 12 Sinistrality, 1865 -- 13 Broca's Last Case, 1866 -- 14 The Norwich Papers, 1868 -- 15 Dynamic Asymmetry, 1875-1879 -- Epilogue: Cortical Localization after Broca -- APPENDICES -- 1 Magnetic Resonance Imaging of Leborgne's and Lelong's Brains -- 2 Broca's Papers on Language and Cerebral Asymmetry -- Notes -- Index
Summary "Paul Broca's discovery that the left frontal lobe of the brain determines our ability to speak is a highpoint of human biology. Broca made this discovery as a young surgeon working not in the great anatomical laboratories of a prestigious university, but at the hospice at Bicêtre in the outskirts of Paris, a repository for the criminal, the insane, the indigent and the sick. The Dean of Medicine in Paris, a proponent of phrenology, laid down the groundwork for Broca's discovery, but his path was paved with derision, acrimony, personal attacks and vindictiveness. However, the greatest challenge that Broca faced was the prevailing doctrine that the anatomically symmetrical hemispheres of the brain could not serve different functions, and that therefore speech must reside in both hemispheres. Once this obstacle was surmounted and the dominant role of the left hemisphere in language was accepted, Broca's priority in this discovery was challenged by the unearthing of a privately distributed address given by a country doctor who died before he could publish his findings. It was not until the mid-20th century that left-hemisphere dominance for speech was confirmed at the Montreal Neurological Institute. This recounting of Broca's discovery is based on a new reading and translation of the original records of Broca and his detractors. Like all great scientific discoveries, Broca's was hard won, but he brought forward a fundamental truth of biology, and ultimately of the human condition. Of this struggle nothing remains but the telling."-- Provided by publisher
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references and index
Subject Bouillaud, J. (Jean), 1796-1881
Broca, Paul, 1824-1880.
Dax, Marc, 1770-1837.
Bouillaud, J. (Jean), 1796-1881.
Broca, Paul, 1824-1880.
Brain -- Localization of functions -- Research -- France -- Paris -- History -- 19th century
Language and languages -- Physiological aspects -- Research -- France -- Paris -- History -- 19th century
Language -- history
MEDICAL -- Physiology.
SCIENCE -- Life Sciences -- Human Anatomy & Physiology.
MEDICAL -- History.
France -- Paris.
Genre/Form History.
Form Electronic book
ISBN 9780773551657