The experiences that we take for granted – talking to a friend, listening to a piece of music, lifting a cup of coffee, tasting a peach – depend for their existence on the intricate and silent workings of several cooperative regions of the brain.
Why do some people see numbers as coloured? Do we have five or twenty-five senses? How much of the brain do we need to understand language? Can we cure chronic pain or depression at the flick of an electrical switch? Do we decide how to act before we know about it?
For this four-part series, Professor Barry Smith from the Institute of Philosophy, explores the way neuroscience is addressing the ultimate scientific challenge: namely, how our brain makes us the conscious creatures we are – capable of language, thinking and feeling.
Part one: Senses and Language