A General Theory of Love
Until comparatively recently textbooks on psychology and neuroscience had next to nothing to say about love. Only in the last few years have brain researchers found ways to investigate the active physiology of emotions and feelings beyond the basics of limbic anatomy and a handful of neurotransmitters. At the close of the Decade of the Brain (1990s) three psychiatrists at the University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine wrote A General Theory of Love (Random House, 2000), outlining new research into brain function which shows how love is a human necessity, although that won't come as much of a surprise to most people. The evidence is that, from earliest childhood, our brains actually link with those of the people close to us, in a silent rhythm that alters the structure of our brains and establishes life-long emotional patterns. The authors are:
Table of Contents:
- Thomas Lewis, M.D: assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at UCSF School of Medicine.
- Fari Amini, M.D: psychiatry professor at UCSF School of Medicine.
- Richard Lannon, M.D: founder of the Affective Disorders Program at UCSF.
"Some might think it strange that a book on the psychobiology of love opens with a poem, but the adventure itself demands it. Poetry transpires at the juncture between feeling and understanding - and so does the bulk of emotional life. More than three hundred years ago, the French mathematician Blaise Pascal wrote, The heart has its reasons whereof Reason knows nothing. Pascal was correct, although he could not have known why. Centuries later, we know that the neural systems responsible for emotion and intellect are separate, creating a chasm between them in human minds and lives. The same rift makes the mysteries of love difficult for people to penetrate, despite an earnest desire to do so. Because of the brain's design, emotional life defeats Reason much as a poem does. Both retreat from the approach of explication like a mirage on a summer's day."A General Theory of Love - link
Table of Contents:
- THE HEART'S CASTLE:
Science Joins the Search for Love.
- KITS, CATS, SACKS, AND UNCERTAINTY:
How the Brain's Basic Structure Poses Problems for Love.
- ARCHIMEDES' PRINCIPLE:
How We Sense the Inner World of Other Hearts.
- A FIERCER SEA:
How Relationships Permeate the Human Body, Mind, and Soul.
- GRAVITY'S INCARNATION:
How Memory Stores and Shapes Love.
- A BEND IN THE ROAD:
How Love Changes Who We Are and Who We Can Become.
- THE BOOK OF LIFE:
How Love Forms, Guides, and Alters a Child's Emotional Mind.
- BETWEEN STONE AND SKY:
What Can Be Done to Heal Hearts Gone Astray.
- A WALK IN THE SHADOWS:
How Culture Blinds Us to the Ways of Love.
- THE OPEN DOOR:
What the Future Holds for the Mysteries of Love.
- Related blog article:
The Un-Emotional Brain