Lecture series explores the secret life of the brain

The workings of the brain remain mysterious.

Moral choices, the effects of physical touch, vivid dreams—we may not know how or why they happen, but they all can serve a purpose.

Our 2017 Brain Awareness Season lecture series delves into The Secret Life of the Brain.

The Criminal Brain
Monday, March 20
7–8:30 p.m.

Tavi Choi 120Why do some people live lawful lives, while others gravitate toward repeated criminality? Do people choose to be moral or immoral, or is morality simply a genetically inherited function of the brain, like mathematical ability?

Research suggests certain regions of the brain influence moral reasoning.

Dr. Octavio Choi will explore how emerging neuroscience challenges long-held assumptions underlying the basis—and punishment—of criminal behavior.

Buy your tickets now

Touch: The Science of Hand, Heart and Mind
Monday, March 27
7–8:30 p.m.

David Linden 2Dual-function receptors in our skin make mint cool and chili peppers hot.

Without the brain’s dedicated centers for pleasure and emotional touch, an orgasm would feel more like a sneeze—convulsive, but not especially nice.

Dr. David Linden, New York Times-best-selling author of The Compass of Pleasure, delves into how the organization of our body’s touch circuits is a complex and often counter-intuitive system that affects everything from social interactions to general health and development.

Buy your tickets now

Sleep, Memory and Dreams: Putting it all together
Tuesday, April 4
7–8:30 p.m.

Robert Stickgold 120It’s no secret that without a good night’s sleep we feel mentally sluggish. But what does our brain do while we sleep? Is there a scientific reason we dream?

Dr. Robert Stickgold will explore why dreaming and sleep are key to retaining, strengthening and processing new memories and skills.

Buy your tickets now

The Season also includes the always popular Brain Fair and Teacher Workshop. Don’t miss these free opportunities to learn about the brain.

OHSU Brain Institute Brain Fair
Saturday, March 11, 2017
10 a.m.–5 p.m.

kids touching a brain
The OHSU Brain Fair is an annual event at the Oregon Museum of Science & Industry (OMSI).

This year’s Brain Fair includes interactive exhibits, real human and animal brains, prizes and dozens of OHSU Brain Institute neuroscientists explaining and demonstrating their groundbreaking research in a way that will be fascinating for all ages.

No museum admission is required to attend.

Brain Awareness Teacher Workshop
Saturday, March 18, 2017

Sponsored in partnership with OHSU’s Office of Science Education Opportunities, The Moore Institute for Nutrition and Wellness and the OHSU Brain Institute, the annual Teacher Workshop is a unique opportunity designed to give teachers an insight into what role neuroscience plays in the classroom.

Speakers include Lawrence Sherman, Ph.D. and Lynne Messer, Ph.D., M.P.H.
Registration is currently full. Please email orbrains@ohsu.edu to be added to the wait-list.