What a Neuroscientist Said about Jon Stewart’s Brain

 – March 24, 2015  –– 

Watching a comedy show with Heather Berlin, PhD, a neuroscientist at The Mount Sinai Hospital, must be a strange experience. You (and everyone else in the room) are focused on the jokes; Berlin, on the other hand, is mostly curious about the brain responsible for creating those jokes. Previously, Berlin has used brain scanners to peer into the minds of rappers, to see what happens when the musicians are freestyling as compared to performing memorized material, similar to studies other researchers have done, with similar results, on improvisational jazz musicians. "We want to add in the comedy group to see if there is actually some kind of neural signature of spontaneous creativity — something that looks the same, across different disciplines," she said.

-Heather Berlin, PhD, Assistant Professor, Psychiatry, Neuroscience, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai

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