The Divided Brain – the documentary video

Anyone who follows this blog will be aware that I follow the work of Iain McGilchrist, author of The Master and His Emissary. The Divided Brain and the Making of the Western World. This book explores how our brain interprets the world and suggests that the problems we are facing in today’s world stem from the fundamental incompatibility between the left hemisphere and right hemisphere ways of thinking and seeing the world. Iain McGilchrist’s book is long and dense, over 500 pages of small typeface. Not an easy read, but for anyone concerned about the state of the world we live in, a very necessary read.

A wonderful introduction to the book’s key ideas has been produced in the form of a film which has taken a number of years to produce, but is now available to rent for the small sum of £3.89, on Vimeo, accompanied by this text:

Once in a generation someone puts forth a seemingly audacious idea that completely changes the way we see the world around us. Dr. Iain McGilchrist might just be that person. THE DIVIDED BRAIN is a mind-altering odyssey about one man’s quest to prove a growing imbalance in our brains, and help us understand how this makes us increasingly unable to grapple with critical economic, environmental and social issues; ones that shape our very future as a species.

The film runs for 1 hour 18 mins. It is beautifully shot, following Iain McGilchrist around the world as he speaks to a number of eminent scientists and celebrities about his ideas, not all of whom agree with him. The film ends with Iain suggesting that we need a paradigm shift in how we conceive of what a human being is, what the world is and what our relationship with it is. He further suggests that love is a pure attention to the existence of the ‘Other’ and that we’re on this planet to give attention to that ‘Other’, which includes not only people, but also the natural world.

For further information about the film see the divided brain website and the information below sent to me by the film’s producer Vanessa Dylyn.

After successful screenings in London, Washington and Toronto, we are pleased to announce:

The Divided Brain is now available to stream

*outside Canada

Just click The Divided Brain thumbnail on our web store


*Canadian residents will be able to watch the broadcast premiere on the CBC’s documentary channel on September 22nd, 2019 at 9pm ET (6pm PT). It will also be re-broadcast on Sept 24 at 11am/3pm/7pm (all ET) and Sun Sept 29 at 6am/11am/4pm.

2 thoughts on “The Divided Brain – the documentary video

  1. ggoldbergmd August 27, 2019 / 2:49 am

    Thank you for bringing the film to the attention of those following your blog.
    It is great that the film is now out and available for viewing through Vimeo. Another very interesting opportunity to tune in to Iain McGilchrist’s theory of the divided brain is this episode of the podcast called ‘The Hidden Brain’ hosted by Shankar Vedantam…

    https://www.npr.org/2019/02/01/690656459/one-head-two-brains-how-the-brains-hemispheres-shape-the-world-we-see

    This is a great podcast for anyone interested in the relationship between brain function and human experience, and this is my favorite particular episode…

  2. jennymackness August 27, 2019 / 9:54 am

    It’s good to hear from you Gary, Thank you for this comment. I did note the podcast you mention earlier this year (I think in February), although I didn’t mention it on this blog, so thank you for doing that.

    At the time I read the transcript rather than listen to the podcast and see now that I highlighted the following sentence:

    >> Have you ever wondered whether you, yourself, might be captive to your left hemisphere and you, potentially, now can’t see the problems with your own model? <<

    A question worth reflecting on, don't you think?

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