“The Brain that Changes Itself:” Norman Doidge Attends Society for Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis

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Eric Willmarth, Norman Doidge, and Donald Moss


Neuroplasticity is the relatively new concept of the human brain, which highlights the capacity of the brain to recover after injury through organizing new functional pathways, and in part by actually growing new cells and regenerating nerves.
The attached photo shows Norman Doidge with two Saybrook University faculty members, Donald Moss and Eric Willmarth, attending the Society for Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis (SCEH) meeting in Toronto, Ontario on October 13, 2012.
Norman Doidge is a Canadian psychiatrist, psychoanalyst, researcher and poet. He is on faculty at the University of Toronto’s Department of Psychiatry, and on the research faculty at Columbia University in New York City. He resides in Toronto.  
At age 19, Norman Doidge earned the E. J. Pratt Prize for his poetry.  He studied classics and philosophy, went on to earn a medical degree and later psychiatric and psychoanalytic training. He has published on trauma, problems in love, psychiatric diagnosis, and psychotherapy. His special gift is for making scientific research understandable for both lay persons and professionals outside a specialty area. He gained wide recognition in Canada for writing a newspaper column “On Human Nature,” in the National Post, from 1998 to 2001. 
Doidge has gained international recognition for his 2007 book The Brain that Changes Itself:  Stories of Personal Triumph from the Frontiers of Brain Science (Viking). In his book, he tells compelling stories of individuals who have faced the challenge of brain trauma and gone on to recover function, in many cases beyond medical expectations. Doidge’s message is that the human brain is adaptive and will seek to organize new neuronal pathways and connections.
While attending the SCEH meeting in Toronto, Norman Doidge agree to do a video-interview with Eric Willmarth, to discuss his life, career and work. In that interview, he sends his greetings to the Saybrook University students in the Contemporary Neurosciences, Clinical Hypnosis, and Mind-Body Medicine Overview classes – especially students in the School of Mind-Body Medicine and the Integrative Health program in psychology.  Norman Doidge was fascinated to learn of the School of Mind-Body medicine, and commented:  “I wish I could go to a school like that.”

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