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The Kingdom of Infinite Space: A Portrait of…

The Kingdom of Infinite Space: A Portrait of Your Head

by Raymond Tallis

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De auteur, filosoof en oud-hoogleraar geriatrie, bespreekt in dit boek vrijwel alle aspecten van het lichaamsdeel waarmee mensen zich het allermeest identificeren – het hoofd, volgens velen de zetel van de ziel en de plaats waar de menselijke identiteit wordt gelokaliseerd. Daarbij komen achtereenvolgens zeer diverse en meest alledaagse zaken en processen aan de orde die zich in, op of via het hoofd afspelen. Het gaat daarbij om veel meer dan denkvermogen, hersenen en zintuigen. Daarnaast komen onder meer uiterlijkheden, zoals het hoofdhaar aan de orde en geeft de auteur een analyse van het ontstaan van de spraak, van de sociale geschiedenis van het blozen en van het kussen als bij uitstek menselijke gewoonte. Met dit alles laat Tallis zien dat het hoofd een plaats is waar voortdurend vitale, maar ook meer banale activiteiten plaatsvinden. Een bijzonder origineel en fascinerend boek, waarin feiten en wetenswaardigheden die zijn gebaseerd op de resultaten van wetenschappelijk onderzoek, op een voor een breed publiek toegankelijke en bovendien vermakelijke wijze worden gepresenteerd. ( )
  NelA1953 | Jun 19, 2009 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0300142226, Hardcover)

In this pathbreaking book, one of Britain’s most eloquent and original thinkers writes about the head, what happens in it, and how it is and is not connected to our sense of identity and consciousness. Blending science, philosophy, and humor, Raymond Tallis examines the extraordinarily complex relationship we have with our heads. His aim, as he says, “is to turn readers into astonished tourists of the piece of the world that is closest to them, so they never again take for granted the head that looks at them from the mirror.” Readers will delight that this is precisely what he accomplishes.


The voyage begins with a meditation on the self-portrait of a mirror image, followed by a consideration of the head’s various secretions. Tallis contemplates the air we exhale; the subtle meanings of nods, winks, and smiles; the mysteries of hearing, taste, and smell. He discusses the metaphysics of the gaze, the meaning of kissing, and the processes by which the head comes to understand the world. Along the way he offers intriguing digressions on such notions as “having” and “using” one’s head, and enjoying and suffering it. Tallis concludes with his thoughts on the very thing the reader’s head has been doing throughout the book: thinking.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:20 -0400)

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"The Kingdom of Infinite Space is a journey around the part of our anatomy with which we most closely identify: our heads. Tallis explains the social history of blushing, ponders the curiousness of kissing, and shows how giggling really is infectious. From the production of ear wax, to why we cry, to the evolution of abstract thought, his book is an exploration of the everyday acts performed by our heads. Through his descriptions of sleeping and awakening, and the transformation of breath into speech, laughter or a sneeze, Tallis reveals the head as a place of continuous, vital activity and of extraordinary sophistication."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

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Yale University Press

2 editions of this book were published by Yale University Press.

Editions: 0300142226, 0300158602

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