The first chapter depicts one who suffered from a balance system and felt that she was falling, because of deficits of her brain resulting from overdose of some drugs. Then doctor used a treatment in which a device was installed on her tongue, sending signal to the brain to coordinate her response to external action. After a long time of training, a new channel is built up to replace the damaged part and she recovered. It is a convincing case which demonstrates that on the contrary of former ideas which held that the brain is developed and then fixed, it can be rewired,(I paraphrase) -just like the cell can be activated, so does the brain.
An even more example comes from the doctor’s father(DF), who had a stroke and then lost basic ability to speak, walk and even crawl. In a similarly way, DF is trained with great patience and extraordinary ideas, then he regains it. After about 7 years, DF had a heart disease and pass away when he was climbing a mountain. The research of his brain shows that his brain had serious damages, indicating that the brain changed itself to form a new path to deal with the nervous reaction.
Chapter two is about a girl named Barbara who had problem in logic, reasoning and reading. For example, she cannot read the clock, distinguish the difference between A’s B and B’s A. But she can write well. She made a lot of effort to enter college. After reading a case of a Soviet soldier who had a bullet in his brain but survived it, and developed a similar symptom as Barbara, she gave up the traditional therapy and attempted to develop a cure, finally she healed herself.
According to the research and experience of author, somewhat brain disability seems ordinary among all of us, only with different level.
An alarming conclusion is that the curriculum of rote memorization of long poems helps building a strengthened brain function of memory and thinking in languages. However, these curriculums were dropped by the educators since 1960s, who claimed that it was boring and helpless. As a result, many students lost the only opportunity to exercise the brains systematically. Moreover, according to the author, this change also contributes to the decrease of eloquent people. (it occurs to me that we should do a research about Mr Obama’s education). And people’s rely on PPT can be interpreted as a compensation of a weak pre-motor cortex.
These discovery remind me that maybe some of my peers in elementary school who had a poor score suffer from certain brain problems, which, if identified, can be treated with much less efforts.
To be continued