> Skip to content
About the book
  • Published: 1 September 2010
  • ISBN: 9781407072067
  • Imprint: Vintage Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 352

Descartes' Error

Emotion, Reason and the Human Brain




‘Crucial reading’ - New York Times Book Review

In the centuries since Descartes famously proclaimed, 'I think, therefore I am,' science has often overlooked emotions as the source of a person's true being. Even modern neuroscience has tended until recently to concentrate on the cognitive aspects of brain function, disregarding emotions. This attitude began to change with the publication of DESCARTES' ERROR. Antonio Damasio challenged traditional ideas about the connection between emotions and rationality. In this wonderfully engaging book, Damasio takes the reader on a journey of scientific discovery through a series of case studies, demonstrating what many of us have long suspected: emotions are not a luxury, they are essential to rational thinking and to normal social behaviour.

  • Pub date: 1 September 2010
  • ISBN: 9781407072067
  • Imprint: Vintage Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 352

About the Author

Antonio Damasio

Born in Portugal, Antonio Damasio became Van Allen Distinguished Professor and head of the department of neurology at the University of Iowa College of Medicine, and Adjunct Professor at the Salk Institute in La Jolla, California. He is the author of Descartes' Error: Emotion, Reason and the Human Brain and The Feeling of What Happens: Body, Emotion and the Making of Consciousness.

Also by Antonio Damasio

See all

Praise for Descartes' Error

“Rich in provocative concepts about intelligence, memory, creativity and passion”

Los Angeles Times

“idiosyncratic and engaging”

The Times

“Damasio is a profound thinker and an elegant writer...Descartes' Error is a fascinating exploration of the biology of reason and its inseparable dependence on emotion”

Oliver Sacks

“Crucial reading”

New York Times Book Review

“A thought-provoking account”

New Scientist


Related titles