A Young Mind in a Growing Brain summarizes some initial conclusions that follow simultaneous examination of the psychological milestones of human development during its first decade and what has been learned about brain growth. This volume proposes that development is the process of experience working on a brain that is undergoing significant biological maturation. Experience counts, but only when the brain has developed to the point of being able to process, encode, and interact with these new environmental experiences.
This book's aim is to acquaint developmental biologists and neuroscientists with what has been learned about human psychological development and to acquaint developmental psychologists with the biological evidence. The hope is that each group will gain a richer appreciation of both knowledge corpora. The authors hope to appeal to neuroscientists, psychologists, psychiatrists, pediatricians, and their students.
The idea for this book was born in 1993 when the authors--a leading developmental psychologist and a pediatrician--met for the first time and recognized the complementarity of their backgrounds and the utility of a collaboration. The reception of their first two papers motivated this attempt to synthesize the available information over a longer developmental era. Learning a great deal over the past decade, the authors hope that their enthusiasm provokes an equally intense curiosity in readers.
"The organization of their new seven-chapter book is straightforward…notable for its memorable observations and careful conclusions. A Young Mind in a Growing Brain…will be appreciated by neuroscientists who want to know more about developmental psychology and by developmental psychologists who want to know more about the brain." - PsycCRITIQUES
"Kagan and Herschkowitz masterfully meet their stated goal of integrating our current understanding of psychological growth with our current understanding of brain development. Particularly admirable is the degree to which the authors point out limitations of such integration and offer multiple interpretations of the data." - Cerebrum
"In this highly readable, thought-provoking book, Kagan and Herschkowitz bravely tackle two questions of fundamental importance to understanding the human condition: how do psychological phenomena emerge from neural activity, and can an understanding of brain development help explain behavioral development? Although not all will agree with the views espoused by these eminent authors, there is no denying the wisdom imparted in this book. To those who wish to understand child development as viewed through the lens of neuroscience, or those who are fearless enough to have their views of child development challenged, I highly recommend this book." - Charles A. Nelson, Ph.D., Professor of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School, Boston Children's Hospital
"Acquiring a mind in the growing brain is the most important event in an individual's life history. We have witnessed great advances in developmental neurobiology and developmental psychology, but rarely are these two subjects put so skillfully together. Specialists in these two fields, as well as the more general public, will appreciate this outstanding book." - Pasko Rakic, M.D., Ph.D., Professor and Chairman of Neurobiology, Yale University
Contents: Preface. Brain and Behavioral Development. Prenatal Development. Birth to 6 Months. The Second Transition: 7 to 12 Months. The Second Year. Two to 8 Years. Reflections.