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Neuroscience and Free Will

Tom Sutcliffe explores how far 'we are our brains' with neuroscientist Dick Swaab, philosopher Julian Baggini, theatre director Natalie Abrahami and writer Helen Dunmore.

Tom Sutcliffe talks to the neuroscientist Dick Swaab who argues that everything we do and don't do is determined by our brain. He explains why 'we are our brains'. The philosopher Julian Baggini doesn't dispute the pre-eminence of brain processes but believes it doesn't tell the whole story. As a writer Helen Dunmore must get into the minds of her characters - the latest a war-damaged soldier from the trenches. Natalie Abrahami only has the heads of her characters to play with as she directs Samuel Beckett's Happy Days about the amazing ability of a woman to survive by denying her ever-diminishing world.
Producer: Katy Hickman.

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43 minutes

Dick Swaab

Dick Swaab is a researcher in neuroscience and a professor of neurobiology at the University of Amsterdam.

 

We Are Our Brains: From the Womb to Alzheimer’s is published by Allen Lane.

Julian Baggini

Julian Baggini is the editor and co-founder of The Philosophers' Magazine.

 

The Virtues of the Table: How to Eat and Think is published by Granta Books.

 

Julian Baggini

Natalie Abrahami

Natalie Abrahami is a director and the current Genesis Fellow at the Young Vic.

 

Happy Days by Samuel Beckett is on at the Young Vic from 23 January to 8 March.

 

Young Vic

Helen Dunmore

Helen Dunmore is an author, poet, children’s novelist and short-story writer.

 

The Lie is published by Hutchinson.

 

Helen Dunmore

Credits

Role Contributor
Presenter Tom Sutcliffe
Interviewed Guest Dick Swaab
Interviewed Guest Julian Baggini
Interviewed Guest Helen Dunmore
Interviewed Guest Natalie Abrahami
Producer Katy Hickman

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