Struck by Genius

Struck by Genius

How A Brain Injury Made Me A Mathematical Marvel

Book - 2014
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"No one sees the world as Jason Padgett does. Water pours from the faucet in crystalline patterns, numbers call to mind distinct geometric shapes, and intricate fractal patterns emerge from the movement of tree branches, revealing the intrinsic mathematical designs hidden in the objects around us. Yet Padgett wasn't born this way. Twelve years ago, he had never made it past pre-algebra. But a violent mugging forever altered the way his brain works, giving him unique gifts. His ability to understand math and physics skyrocketed, and he developed the astonishing ability to draw the complex geometric shapes he saw everywhere. His stunning, mathematically precise artwork illustrates his intuitive understanding of complex mathematics. The first documented case of acquired savant syndrome with mathematical synesthesia, Padgett is a medical marvel. Struck by Genius recounts how he overcame huge setbacks and embraced his new mind. Along the way he fell in love, found joy in numbers, and spent plenty of time having his head examined. Like Born on a Blue Day and My Stroke of Insight, his singular story reveals the wondrous potential of the human brain. "-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: Boston : Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2014
[Place of publication not identified] : Houghton Mifflin Harcourt 2014
ISBN: 9780544045606
0544045602
Branch Call Number: 155.935 P133S 2014
Characteristics: ix, 243 pages, 6 unumbered pages of photographs : illustrations, photographs ; 24 cm
Additional Contributors: Seaberg, Maureen Ann

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FederalWayEdna Jun 19, 2015

I was concerned this biography may read as too technical but, Jason's description of his life from unremarkable to remarkable is surprisingly honest and down-to-earth. It's an interesting and intriguing read.

bibliotechnocrat Aug 20, 2014

After surviving a mugging involving brain trauma, Jason Pagett suddenly takes on Rain Man qualities (albeit without quite as severe social issues). Previously a party boy uninterested in math, academics, or other more serious pursuits, he suddenly sees the world in an entirely new way. He has both synthesia and acquired savantism.

The story of the mugging and his eventual (and miraculous) recovery is interesting as it raises so many questions about how perceptions develop, and how the brain is wired. However, as a narrative, it sags in several places. The voice is also a little unclear - perhaps due to the dual authorship.

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