Monday, January 23, 2012

Anosognosia, or The Dunning-Kruger Effect

I'll make it up to you.

1 comment:

Texan99 said...

I've been reading V.S. Ramachandran's "Phantoms in the Brain," which is a delightful Oliver-Sachs-like book, so of course there's quite a lot about stroke-related anosognosia in it. He's endlessly fascinated by the people who suffer paralysis on one side but can't be made to realize it. They "see" their paralyzed arm moving and taking the coffee cup; some even report pain when the cup is "grabbed" away from them. He thinks that the left side of the brain is in charge of imposing order and pattern, while the right side hangs around doubtfully in the wings saying, "I don't know . . . does that seem quite right? I could swear that Emperor hasn't got any clothes on." Now and then the right side forces a complete reappraisal, what we describe as the scales falling from our eyes. But if the stroke damages the part of the right brain whose job that is, the left side will insist on all kinds of crazy things that just "must be true."

I have to wonder if that poor fellow hears something completely different from his audience.