Re: Study finds brain region for maternal aggression.

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From: Dave Long (
Date: Thu Nov 16 2000 - 10:34:47 PST

> Seriously, the mouse seems to be a decent enough model. Research like this
> is frighteningly close to collapsing our vaunted notion of "free will" into
> a biochemical concept, something partially if not completely modelable. On
> the other hand, how predictable is a chaotic process?

Research like this doesn't really address "free will". The ancients
recognized the existence of emotions such as maternal aggression, and
also the existence of the choice between acting and not acting on the
emotions. The biochemistry explains a bit more of the chain by which
the emotions arise, and perhaps about simple response (actions chosen
by cached/habituated values), but it doesn't say much about how reason
is integrated with stimuli to produce rational response.

If I understand properly, "free will" is more of a problem if one has
omnipotent gods, and is not sure those choices are independently made.

> neuroscientists can
> begin to consider more precise pharmacological manipulation of the brain to
> zero in on the brain circuitry that produces aggression.

"Viviparous" was a smutty word in the Brave New World, partly due
to the existence of maternal aggression; anyone for some soma?


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