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 logic puzzle that Eagleman challenges readers with involve?

2. What creature does Eagleman use as an example of one with an excellent sense of smell?

3. Where does the incident take place that Eagleman describe from 1966?

4. What question does Eagleman pose about the actor?

5. What were men first shown briefly?

Short Essay Questions

1. Who is Charles Whitman and what did he do and what may have contributed to his actions?

2. What does Eagleman say about free will?

3. What happens when the frontal cortex is damaged?

4. How does Eagleman interpret the incident?

5. What comparison of thought to wavelengths does Eagleman make?

6. What does Eagleman suggest about our culpability in our actions, particularly males?

7. Explain the physical division in the brain and what can happen if the two hemispheres are severed.

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

9. Does Eagleman think genetics or upbringing has more to bear on one's actions and does he think it is an important question?

10. What incident does Eagleman discuss concerning Mel Gibson?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

There are ways to measure how our unconscious minds affect our conscious thinking even without our knowing it, Eagleman explains. For example, a person may consciously profess to have no prejudicial feelings about people of a certain race, but experiments that ask them to associate certain words such as "like" or "dislike" with photographs or words describing different races or creeds can reveal that they may move slightly toward the "dislike" option before choosing "like". This reveals a conflict between the unconscious and unconscious minds, Eagleman claims.

1. Do you think you could have unconscious feelings, such as prejudice, of which you are unaware? Why or why not? Use examples from your own life and Incognito to support your answer.

2. Discuss what conflicts might rise between the unconscious and conscious mind when you decide not to study for a test. Use examples from your own life and Incognito to support your answer.

3. Do you think the unconscious mind always makes the best decisions over the conscious mind? Why or why not? Use examples from your own life and Incognito to support your answer.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the following:

1. What do you think are the characteristics of a successful work of non-fiction?

2. Analyze and discuss The Hand based upon the criteria you decide upon in #1 and judge if Incognito is a successful work of non-fiction/memoir.

3. Is The Hand a book you would recommend to a friend? Why or why not? Explain.

4. Can a non-fictional book be successful and yet many readers not enjoy it? Explain your response.

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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