Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain Test | Final Test - Hard

David Eagleman
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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What does the amygdala regulate?

2. What culture does this actor slander?

3. What does Eagleman say a man named Alex started demonstrating?

4. What proved difficult in programming robots?

5. What is exceptional about the creature mentioned in question 89?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Eagleman say about our ability to perceive light versus that of insects?

2. Explain the study that was performed on how men rate a woman's attractiveness.

3. What does Eagleman write about Kenneth Parks?

4. What does Eagleman say about a man named Alex?

5. How does a rat react to conflicting choices?

6. What does Eagleman say is hard wired into our brains?

7. What does a team of rivals have to do with the brain?

8. What incident does Eagleman discuss concerning Mel Gibson?

9. How does Eagleman use an example of early robotics to illustrate how the mind may be divided?

10. What example does Eagleman cite to demonstrate the difference between the rational and emotional mind?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Eagleman in writing about Mel Gibson cites anti-Semitism was demonstrated by Gibson. Discuss one of the following:

1. Define anti-Semitism and give examples of it from both Incognito and other sources.

2. Do you think anti-Semitism still exists in the United States? Explain.

3. Discuss the idea put forth by Eagleman that Mel Gibson may have two brains, one not prejudice and one that is. Use examples from Incognito to support your answer.

Essay Topic 2

This assembly of competing routines is what makes up most of the activity of our brains, and our conscious mind, as is demonstrated in brains where these competing processes have been interrupted or disconnected, is mostly at the mercy of our unconscious processes. Eagleman presents the results of experiments that suggest that our conscious mind will even fabricate reasons for our actions after the fact when we cannot tell what our true motivations are.

1. There is a saying that we do not really look at pros and cons for a decision but instead make the decision unconsciously and then justify our decision with pros and cons. Discuss this idea bringing in the examples Eagleman gives.

2. Do you think most of the time a person does not know his or her true motivations for behavior? Why or why not? Use examples from your own life and Incognito to support your reasoning.

3. Discuss an incident in your life where after it happen you could not understand why you said or did what you said or did. How does that incident relate to Eagleman's assertion about unconscious control of people's lives? Use examples from your own life and Incognito to support your reasoning.

Essay Topic 3

There are a number of interesting questions raised by Incognito. Questions that Eagleman most likely want readers to consider and think through carefully. Discuss the following:

1. What does the term "author agenda" mean?

2. Name one idea/concept you think may have been a part of the Eagleman's agenda. Analyze that idea throughout the book and discuss Wilson's probable agenda concerning that idea.

2. Do you think writers who have an agenda for writing should point it out in a preface?

3. How often do you think fiction is written with a clear agenda in mind by the author?

4. Research the life of Eagleman and see if/where his life may have influenced his writing.

(see the answer keys)

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