Please note the change of venue for this event

The New Institute is proud to host a special additional event in September 2011 – a presentation by Dr Iain McGilchrist, a former Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford, a Fellow of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, and former Consultant Psychiatrist and Clinical Director at the Bethlem Royal & Maudsley Hospital, London. He is the author of the critically acclaimed “The Master and his Emissary: The Divided Brain and the Making of the Western World.” (

Dr McGilchrist has written and published extensively on the function of the human brain and the role of the divided hemispheres. He believes our brains are divided for a reason.  Evolution required it, and it makes sense in terms of survival. The left hemisphere provides instrumental attention, enabling us to get and manipulate, by focussing sharply on narrowly conceived detail. The right hemisphere provides relational attention, enabling us to see the whole picture, to form social bonds, to inhabit and belong to the world we see, rather than simply being detached from it and using it.  In human consciousness, these two modes of attention give rise to two different versions of the world, with different qualities, as well as different sets of preoccupations and values. He argues that the hemispheres of the brain need to cooperate but in fact are in a power struggle. He contends this struggle explains many aspects of contemporary Western culture.

His hypothesis has implications for the way we see ourselves in relation to the world and how we understand the nature of our minds and bodies. It also has significant implications for different cultures, the way we interact with the environment and the way we deal with conflict.

Whether you have a specific academic or professional interest, or whether you have a spiritual or cultural interest, this will be a unique opportunity to hear one of the foremost thinkers in brain science and the way humans function in their environment.

VENUE: Newcastle City Hall – Hunter Room, King St Newcastle     
DATE: Monday 19th September 2011  
TIME: 7.00 till 8.30pm
ADMISSION: $5 Donation
FURTHER DETAILS:  or Angie at  0422 401 129

Download pdf flyer for this event here

The divided brain and the unmaking of our world