In popular parlance, we regularly conceptualize the mind as separate from the body. This is actually connected to histories of philosophical thought and is referred to, depending upon the person, as mind-body dualism or Cartesian dualism (from Rene Descartes). Important here is that this isn’t speaking about the brain as a physical thing but is connected to the mind (i.e. that seemingly immaterial aspect of our awareness and engagement with the world). Think about your personality, your self. Does it feel physical or nonphysical?

To that end, I want you to reflect upon: the seemingly immaterial aspects of ourselves have profound consequences for the social sciences. With this week’s readings in mind, consider the ways in which it is often difficult to convey “who we are” to others, even though the growth of psychological knowledge has built up a bevy of information on the physical structuring of our brain. What aspects of the self, of psychology, do you think can never be fully explicated with studies of the physical structures of the brain? Why is that?

Finally, I want you to post a song that you think is indicative of or reflective of your “self” and why you think this.

Sample Solution