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We (ok, I) have been a bit slow on the uptake here, but Mindhacks posted a typically excellent piece lamenting the use of ‘neuroplasticity’. Vaughan, in typically excellent style, argues that, because the brain is always changing – we can’t do anything really without something changing – the term is meaningless.  He goes so far to say that perhaps it should be banned.  I agree that the term ‘neuroplasticity’ gives otherwise unremarkable (actually, I still find them all fairly remarkable) everyday brain processes some sort of legitimacy superpower status and that this can be a negative thing. However, I would offer the contrary perspective too – that very same legitimacy can be a crucial factor in some people feeling legitimate in their own experiences, experiences that are illegitimate if there is no solid, scientifically verified and to some extent understood, process by which the nervous system can underpin those experiences. So, I think, like all these things I guess, labelling it and using that label is of great benefit to some and a nuisance to others. What to do? Well, here is a vote – the question:

Should the term ‘neuroplasticity’ be banned? Let the people decide……

Click here to take the survey

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