A Neuroscientist's Personal Journey Into The Dark Side Of The Brain
On Sale: October 31, 2013
Hardcover / e-Book
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"The last scan in the pile was strikingly odd. In fact it
looked exactly like the most abnormal of the scans I had
just been writing about, suggesting that the poor individual
it belonged to was a psychopath—or at least shared an
uncomfortable amount of traits with one....When I found out
who the scan belonged to, I had to believe there was a
mistake....But there had been no mistake. The scan was
For the first fifty-eight years of his life James Fallon was
by all appearances a normal guy. A successful neuroscientist
and medical school professor, he'd been raised in a loving,
supportive family, married his high school sweetheart, and
had three kids and lots of friends.
Then he learned a shocking truth that would not only disrupt
his personal and professional life, but would lead him to
question the very nature of his own identity.
The Psychopath Inside tells the fascinating story of
Fallon's reaction to the discovery that he has the brain of
a psychopath. While researching serial murderers, he
uncovered a distinct neurological pattern in their brain
scans that helped explain their cold and violent behavior. A
few months later he learned that he was descended from a
family with a long line of murderers which confirmed that
Fallon's own brain pattern wasn't a fluke.
As a scientist convinced that humans are shaped by their
genetics, Fallon set out to reconcile the truth about his
brain with everything he knew about the mind, behavior, and
the influence of nature vs. nurture on our personalities.
How could he, a successful scientist and a happy family
man with no history of violence, be a psychopath? How much
did his biology influence his behavior? Was he capable of
some of the gruesome atrocities perpetrated by the serial
killers he had studied?
Combining his personal experience with scientific analysis,
Fallon shares his journey and the discoveries that
ultimately led him to understand that, despite everything
science can teach us, humans are even more complex than we
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