A long view of the nervous system

BBC Radio 4’s In Our Time has a wonderful programme on the history of our knowledge about the nervous system which you can listen to streamed from the webpage or download as an mp3.

It’s a satisfyingly in-depth discussion that tracks first beliefs about the nervous system from ancient times through the renaissance into the modern age.

Scholars first described the nerves of the human body over two thousand years ago. For 1400 years it was believed that they were animated by ‘animal spirits’, mysterious powers which caused sensation and movement. In the eighteenth century scientists discovered that nerve fibres transmitted electrical impulses; it was not until the twentieth century that chemical agents – neurotransmitters – were first identified.

 
Link to episode page with streaming.
mp3 of programme.

4 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. [...] A long view of the nervous system (via Mind Hacks) Posted on February 12, 2011 by firstpraxis BBC Radio 4's In Our Time has a wonderful programme on the history of our knowledge about the nervous system which you can listen to streamed from the webpage or download as an mp3. It's a satisfyingly in-depth discussion that tracks first beliefs about the nervous system from ancient times through the renaissance into the modern age. Scholars first described the nerves of the human body over two thousand years ago. For 1400 years it was believed … Read More [...]

  2. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by mindhacks blog, Andrey Nikankin, darjeelingltd79, Roberto Ruiz, WithRespectToAutism and others. WithRespectToAutism said: New at wrtAUTISM [Mind Hacks] A long view of the nervous system: BBC Radio 4′s In Our Time has a wonderful progr… http://bit.ly/fXyEb6 [...]

  3. [...] A prolonged perspective of a shaken system « Mind Hacks [...]

  4. [...] Mind Hacks points us to a great BBC Radio 4 program on the history of our knowledge of the nervous system: It’s a satisfyingly in-depth discussion that tracks first beliefs about the nervous system from ancient times through the renaissance into the modern age. [...]

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