The Brain that Changes Itself

  • by Norman Doidge
  • Narrated by Jim Bond
  • 11 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

An astonishing new scientific discovery called neuroplasticity is overthrowing the centuries-old notion that the adult human brain is fixed and unchanging. It is, instead, able to change its own structure and function, even into old age.
In this revolutionary look at the brain, psychiatrist and psychoanalyst Norman Doidge, M.D., provides an introduction to both the brilliant scientists championing neuroplasticity and the people whose lives they’ve transformed.


What the Critics Say

“A remarkable and hopeful portrait of the endless adaptability of the human brain.” (Oliver Sacks)
“Mind-bending, miracle-making, reality-busting stuff with implications for all human beings.” ( The New York Times)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Interesting topic, strange focus

What did you like best about The Brain that Changes Itself? What did you like least?

I liked that the book did give examples of real world evidence of plasticity and of the changing of the scientific mindset

Has The Brain that Changes Itself put you off other books in this genre?

No, although I will likely not put myself through listening to the whole thing if I'm not enjoying it again

What about Jim Bond’s performance did you like?

Well read, nice voice and good pace

If this book were a film would you go see it?


Any additional comments?

This book focuses so, so much on the "problem". You hear about what was wrong with someone in graphic, lengthy detail. Some of it is really not pleasant and, to my mind, not relevant. There is a fair amount of academic excess - 10 pages to say what could be said in 1 page, but that wouldn't be such a problem if the author just got on with tellings us about the topic (brains adapting) and less about people putting a nail through their genitals... In print, you could easily skip past that stuff, much less able to do that if you're listening to it while driving.

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- Icewraithuk

Incredible, but not credible

I really wanted to like this book, and at first I did. Quite soon however, I started questioning it at a very fundamental level, to the point where I eventually felt that I couldn't really trust the conclusions. I felt it was sold to me as a means for a layman to understand a complicated area of science, but when looking closer I felt it really lacked a proper scientific approach. Every conclusion in the book was presented using such supreme certainty, in a field where virtually everything is up for debate. I just couldn't believe that the author could know all of that without even a shadow of a doubt.

Some serious warning lights finally started flashing when the author started bringing up Freud left right and center. I mean, perhaps the guy had some good points. But the author discussed Freud as if virtually everything he stood for had been vindicated by the theory of plasticity. Furthermore, like Freud, he kept using his narrow studies and anecdotes to justify a series of extremely moralising conclusions on society.

I didn't hate this book and it certainly inspired me to read more on the subject. However, I cannot recommend it.
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- David Jackson

Book Details

  • Release Date: 23-09-2010
  • Publisher: Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd