Memoirs of an Addicted Brain
Marc Lewis's relationship with drugs began in a New England boarding school where, as a bullied and homesick fifteen-year-old, he made brief escapes from reality by way of cough medicine, alcohol, and marijuana. In Berkeley, California, in its hippie heyday, he found methamphetamine and LSD and heroin. He sniffed nitrous oxide in Malaysia and frequented Calcutta's opium dens. Ultimately, though, his journey took him where it takes most addicts: into a life of addiction, desperation, deception, and crime.But unlike most addicts, Lewis recovered and became a developmental psychologist and researcher in neuroscience. In Memoirs of an Addicted Brain, he applies his professional expertise to a study of his former self, using the story of his own journey through addiction to tell the universal story of addictions of every kind. He explains the neurological effects of a variety of powerful drugs, and shows how they speak to the brain--itself designed to seek rewards and soothe pain--in its own language. And he illuminates how craving overtakes the nervous system, sculpting a synaptic network dedicated to one goal--more--at the expense of everything else.
- Hardback | 336 pages
- 175.26 x 241.3 x 33.02mm | 544.31g
- 07 Jun 2012
- INGRAM PUBLISHER SERVICES US
- New York, United States
Kirkusreview in January 1 issue: "Developmental neuroscientist Lewis examines his odyssey from minor stoner to helpless, full-blown addict....as [he] unspools one pungent drug episode after another, he capably knits into the narrative an accessible explanation of the neural activity that guided his behavior. From opium pipe to orbitofrontal cortex, a smoothly entertaining interplay between lived experience and the particulars of brain activity." Publishers Weekly"Meticulous, evocative... Lewis's unusual blend of scientific expertise, street cred, vivid subjectivity and searching introspection yields a compelling perspective on the perils and allure of addiction."Wall Street Journal"Compelling...for readers grappling with addiction, Mr. Lewis's...approach might well be novel enough to inspire them to seek the happiness he now enjoys."Chronicle of Higher Education"He proceeds deftly from episodes of his drug years to neuroscientific explanations of his brain's response to drugs."Boston Globe
About Marc Lewis
Dr. Marc Lewis is a developmental neuroscientist and professor of human development and applied psychology at Radboud University in the Netherlands, and professor emeritus at the University of Toronto. He is the author of over fifty journal publications in neuroscience and developmental psychology and coeditor of Emotion, Development, and Self-Organization: Dynamic Systems Approaches to Emotional Development.