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Gall Flourens & Broca

Gall Flourens & Broca - Years after Flourens...

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Gall, Flourens and Broca Franz Joseph Gall Franz Joseph Gall (1758-1828) is the founder of phrenology. Phrenology, “science of the mind” assumed that mental functions are located in certain brain areas and that intelligence could be mapped by studying the bumps of the skull. Galls major theory was that different sections of the brain had localized faculties. Even though Gall’s phrenology was popular with the people of the 19 th century it was widely criticized by the scientific community. Pierre Flourens (1794-1867) was perhaps Gall’s biggest critic. Pierre Flourens Phrenology Flourens performed various experiments on animals in which he ablated or removed certain areas of their brains and observed what affect it had on the animal’s overall ability to function “normally”. The purpose of Flourens experiments was to disprove Gall’s theory of localized functions in areas of the brain. Even though Flourens found areas of localization in the nervous system, he found that the nervous system acts as whole, which showed him a lack of brain specialization.
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Unformatted text preview: Years after Flourens discovery of non-localization in the brain a French physician by the name of Pierre-Paul Broca (1824-1880) proved him wrong. Broca had a patient by the name of Leborgne who despite seeming to be able to comprehend everything said to him was unable to produce speech (nonfluent aphasia). Once Leborgne died Broca performed an autopsy and found a tumor on the third convolution of the frontal lobe on the left side of the brain. This area became known as Broca’s area and proved Gall’s idea of brain localization to be correct. Leborgne’s Brain Pierre-Paul Broca Looking back today it is clear that Gall had the right idea about brain specialization but the wrong methods and Flourens had the wrong idea, but the right methods of scientific discovery. References http://www.phrenology.com/franzjosephgall.html http://www.cerebromente.org.br/n01/frenolog/frenloc.htm http://mysite.verizon.net/res0im1v/donettesteelepsychology/ Klein, S., & Thorne M. B. (2006). Biological Psychology. New York: Worth Publishers...
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