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—Linda Hill, Harvard Business School professor and author of Becoming a Manager
In the wake of recent elections, Brexit and other unusual world events, many feel weighed down by uncertainty. It’s no surprise that the more interconnected our world becomes the more immediately we feel the consequences of current events. But, what you may not know is that while the brain hates uncertainty, it also holds the key to adapting to, and even thriving in, uncertain times. In his groundbreaking book DEVIATE: The Science of Seeing Differently (Hachette Books, hardcover, April 25, 2017), world-renowned neuroscientist, entrepreneur, and two-time TED speaker Beau Lotto draws on over two decades of research to reveal startling truths about the brain and how it perceives the world. Along the way, Lotto brilliantly illustrates how we see the world, and then how we can see differently, ultimately unlocking our ability to create, innovate, and effect change.
In DEVIATE, Beau answers the long-debated question: do humans see reality or not? Spoiler alert: we don't. In fact, our brains didn’t – couldn’t! – evolve to see the world accurately. What we see is subjective, not objective. This fundamental revelation shows that everything we know is filtered by each individual's past experiences. It’s the reason why “dressgate” confounded the world and broke the internet in 2015. How was it possible that half the population saw the dress as blue and black and the other half saw it as white and gold? The answer is that color is simply a perception made by the brain when light hits the retina at differing wavelengths. So, color – and the makeup of the dress itself – is not a reality but rather a perception and we see the dress differently than our neighbor because our brains interpret these wavelengths differently.
But understanding the science is only the first step. DEVIATE provides the next step. Through case studies, history, cutting-edge science, entertaining illustrations and optical illusions, DEVIATE provides a clear and comprehensive explanation of the science behind our perceptions and shows how our reactions to that understanding can allow us to literally change our brains and improve how we function in every aspect of life.
At work, at home, in love, while using technology, being out in nature, in groups, and in solitude – the power to unlocking creative potential lies in one’s fundamental understanding of perception. DEVIATE is the practical, enlightening, and groundbreaking guide that will not only provide an illuminating account of the neuroscience of thought, behavior, and creativity, it will ultimately motivate readers and thinkers everywhere to begin their own journey of self-discovery and reinvention.
Beau Lotto is a world-renowned neuroscientist who specialises in the biology and psychology of perception. Originally from Seattle, Washington, he has lived in the United Kingdom for over twenty years and currently resides in Oxford. He received his undergraduate degree from UC Berkeley, his PhD from the University of Edinburgh Medical School, and was a fellow at Duke University. He has been conducting and presenting research on human perception and behavior for more than twenty-five years, has published over sixty publications and two academic books. A professor of Neuroscience at University College London, his interest in education, business, and the arts has led him into entrepreneurship and engaging the public with science. He passionately believes in the impact perception research can have on people from all walks of life.