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Post  cbehling on Tue Nov 16, 2010 1:51 pm


Essay construction:

First the writing topic is very broad, and very general. Then he’ll give a more specific idea, and give a personal story of someone. At the end it’s almost all personal stories. In addition, when he’s talking about personal stories, he’ll section it off so that you realize it’s something separated. You realize it’s a shift in the speaker so there’s no confusion. He shows symptoms and then you get the name for the disease. It’s the reverse of the way people normally explain diseases, however it’s much more similar to how you realize things if you personally have that disease.

“In 1991 Anne F. Wrote to me describing her experiences ‘I believe that 3 people in my immediate family agnosias’” (38)  Personal story

Patterns in structure:

He describes the symptoms, and then tells that condition. After that he’ll give a personal story of someone. He does this for every disease. Especially on page 38:

Doctor Sax and Doctor P have issues. Then he goes into Jane Goodall who can’t recognize faces, humans and chimps alike. Then it goes into the man who mistook his wife for a hat. Then it goes into the terminology.

Forward Moving Argument:

By writing.
By giving specific evidence in the form of anecdotes. Pretty much all of his evidence is anecdotal. “oh by the way, there’s a person who does this and this and this. And oh, by the way, this person has a disease called this.” (Elliot) There’s a section on page 41 that has a little bit of “based on the fact that this and this are both symptoms, some people think this, or that, the fact that there are familial ties implies that its genetic” (Em) He moves his argument forward by having (super sneaky) facts backed up by anecdotes.

What’s really forwarding the reading is the questions that he asks. Once he poses that question, you “have” to find the answer. He gently leads you there using the facts and anecdotes, but that initial question is what really leads you from one place to another.
EX: “This has been a matter of dispute ever since: is there a system dedicated only to face recognition, or is face recognition simply one function of a more general visual recognition system?”

Central or Main Point:

He believes that the brain functions like a network. This is the answer to the question he poses, “How does the brain function in terms of facial recognition?” Evidence of this is given when he uses examples of CT scans to show how the brain worked on people with these diseases, and he really explores how lesions in certain areas of the brain are consistent with the disease. He is interested in how an affected brain affects the way you see the world and how you think.

The brain may function as a network, but face recognition is not only linked to the one visual part of the brain, as opposed to linking to everything.
“The fusiform face area does not work in isolation: it is a vital node in a cognitive network that stretches from the occipital cortex to the pre-frontal area.” (41)


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Face-Blind Empty Good Work!

Post  MaryShelley on Fri Nov 19, 2010 12:32 pm

Dear cbehling & co,
sometimes your claim & your evidence don't line up quite right. This is particularly true of the essay construction and structure pattern questions. Sacks' essay construction is more complex than you describe. Actually, you describe a pattern more than the overall construction, here. His construction involves the layering of multiple sources.

How does your paraphrasing of pg 38 fit w your claim? It's not clear.
Your central or main point response is also garbled! The network concept dispels early notions and reflects the complexity of the brain and suggests how much we have yet to learn about how it works.
Might have helped to collaborate on the composition after the note-taking?


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