Dr. Julian Keenan, a leading researcher on the mysteries of the brain and consciousness, will deliver Montclair State University's Presidential Invited Faculty Address in Memorial Auditorium Wednesday, March 19, at 2:30 p.m. Keenan, an assistant professor of psychology at MSU, will lecture on, "Where Am I? The Search for Consciousness in the Brain." His talk is free and open to the public.
For centuries, researchers have wondered where our 'self' or 'soul' exists. Within the last decade, with the advent of neuroimaging, researchers are beginning to answer this age-old question. Starting with his work at SUNY-Albany, and continuing though his research at Harvard Medical School, Keenan has been chasing this elusive question. His results are quite astonishing, as it appears as if the right hemisphere of the brain appears critical for the formation of who we are.
These findings are revolutionizing the way neuroscience understands the brain, as well as science's ideas on consciousness. His talk will cover the basics of self-awareness -- for example, the fact that your dog or cat cannot recognize itself in a mirror -- and then bridge the gap to modern neuroimaging in the brain.
Keenan joined MSU's Psychology Department in 2001. He established the Cognitive Neuroimaging Laboratory at Montclair with grants from The Kennedy Foundation, The True Mirror Company and Cure Autism Now.
He is the foremost expert in the field of localizing self-awareness in the brain with more than 30 publications, including reports in both Nature and Science. His work has been featured in media outlets including the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, the San Francisco Chronicle and the Times of London. He has appeared on MSNBC, ABC's "World News Tonight," the BBC and National Public Radio.