Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
Mirroring People

Mirroring People

The New Science of How We Connect with Others

Marco Iacoboni

Farrar, Straus and Giroux




What accounts for the remarkable ability to get inside another person's head—to know what they're thinking and feeling? "Mind reading" is the very heart of what it means to be human, creating a bridge between self and others that is fundamental to the development of culture and society. But until recently, scientists didn't understand what in the brain makes it possible.

This has all changed in the last decade. Marco Iacoboni, a leading neuroscientist whose work has been covered in The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and The Wall Street Journal, explains the groundbreaking research into mirror neurons, the "smart cells" in our brain that allow us to understand others. From imitation to morality, from learning to addiction, from political affiliations to consumer choices, mirror neurons seem to have properties that are relevant to all these aspects of social cognition. As The New York Times reports: "The discovery is shaking up numerous scientific disciplines, shifting the understanding of culture, empathy, philosophy, language, imitation, autism and psychotherapy."

Mirroring People is the first book for the general reader on this revolutionary new science.




When we get right down to it, what do we human beings do all day long? We read the world, especially the people we encounter. My face in the mirror first thing in the morning doesn't look too good, but the face beside...


Praise for Mirroring People

“A fascinating account of an unexpected discovery that is changing the way that psychologists and neuroscientists think about everything from language to social interaction.” —Daniel Gilbert, Professor of Psychology, Harvard University, and author of Stumbling on Happiness

“Marco Iacoboni has written a fascinating and wonderfully accessible account of one of the most exciting developments in recent neuroscience--the discovery of ‘mirror neurons.' If you want to know more about the biological basis of empathy, morality, social cognition and self-awareness, read this book.” —Sam Harris, founder of The Reason Project and author of the New York Times best sellers, The End of Faith and Letter to a Christian Nation

“Those of us who thirty years ago began to speculate about the social brain never guessed what riches were in store. Iacoboni's book is both a thrilling account of how research on mirror neurons is revolutionising our understanding of inter-subjectivity, and a passionate manifesto for what he calls ‘existential neuroscience.' Mirroring People does for the story of mirror neurons what The Double Helix did for DNA.” —Nicholas Humphrey, author of Seeing Red: A Study in Consciousness

“A superb introduction to one of the great discoveries of contemporary science: we come wired for empathy and cooperation, and evolution has equipped us to care, not just compete. Think of evolution as the survival of the most caring and best cared for. This is a book you must read.” —George Lakoff, author of The Political Mind: Why You Can't Understand 21st-Century Politics with an 18th-Century Brain

“This book vividly conveys the current excitement in the field of mirror neurons and it should provide a valuable antidote to "Neuron envy" - a widely prevalent syndrome in psychology. The author explores the broader implications of the research for understanding the neural basis of human nature.” —V.S. Ramachandran, M.D., PhD, Director, Center for brain and cognition, UCSD

Reviews from Goodreads

About the author

Marco Iacoboni

Marco Iacoboni is a neurologist and neuroscientist at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. He has appeared on Good Morning America, the Early Show, and Morning Edition, among other TV and radio programs.

Marco Iacoboni

Jennifer Roper

Marco Iacoboni

From the Publisher

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

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