5.16.2011

Pain/pleasure metaphysics-- a request

Lately I've been looking into causal connections between brain states and pain/pleasure.

I'm finding plenty of material on specifics such as nociceptors, gate circuits, correlative fMRI studies, and so forth, but there doesn't appear to be a lot of research, or even much speculation, on the general question.

What are pain and pleasure, in relation to systemic properties of the brain? E.g., what principles could be used to examine a brain and predict whether it's experiencing pain or pleasure? If we knew someone was experiencing pain or pleasure, what principles could we apply to predict what's going on in their brain?

Ditto for sadness and happiness.

If any readers have perspective on the literature or can put me in touch with someone who does, please let me know.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Cardiff University, Psychology Dept. are doing interesting things with the brain and how it works. They may be able to help.

Stu McGoo said...

There are a few books by Professor Stephen Pinker on the mind and brain. He refrences pain and pleasure and how they work in the brain and other publications that he has extrapllated info from. Worth looking at for the blibliographies if nothing else maybe.

Mike said...

Pinker usually has his act together- thanks, I'll check that out.