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The New Executive Brain

The New Executive Brain

Monday, September 14, 2009

The New York Academy of Sciences

Presented By


Elkhonon Goldberg offers a cutting-edge account of what science can now tell us about the human brain. In The New Executive Brain, he paints a sweeping panorama of the most advanced thinking in cognitive neuroscience and neuropsychology, ranging far beyond the frontal lobes. Drawing on the latest discoveries in neurology, Goldberg explains how the brain engages in complex decision-making; how it deals with novelty and ambiguity; and how it addresses moral choices.

Goldberg is known for challenging entrenched assumptions. For instance, we know that the left hemisphere of the brain is the seat of language-but Goldberg argues that language may not be the central adaptation of the left hemisphere. Apes lack language, yet many also show evidence of asymmetric hemispheric development. Goldberg also finds that a complex interaction between the frontal lobes and the amygdala-between a recently evolved and a much older part of the brain-controls emotion, as conscious thoughts meet automatic impulses.

Reception to follow.

This is one event in the 2009 Provocative Thinkers in Science Series, being presented by Science & the City, a program of the New York Academy of Sciences that works to bring science to the public.

Other events in this series include:
The End of Aging: An Evening with Aubrey de Grey, Sept. 22
The Greatest Show on Earth: An Evening with Richard Dawkins, Oct. 19
Celebrating 150 Years of Darwin's Origin of Species: An Evening with Gerald Edelman, Paul Ekman, and Terrence Deacon, Nov. 24
No Small Matter: An Evening with Felice Frankel and George Whitesides, Dec. 7

Limited time offer: Nonmembers who purchase tickets to all 5 events in the series will receive a free Academy membership.

Learn more about the series and the special offer mentioned above at:


Elkhonon Goldberg

NYU School of Medicine

Elkhonon Goldberg is Clinical Professor of Neurology at the New York University School of Medicine. He was a student of the great Russian neuropsychologist, Alexander Luria, and is the author of The Executive Brain and The Wisdom Paradox. His new book, The New Executive Brain, will be released by Oxford Unviersity Press in August 2009. Read more about his work at

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