Joseph Bogen, M.D., was a clinical professor of neurological surgery at USC, a visiting professor of biology at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), and an adjunct professor of psychology at UCLA. In 1962, Bogen was part of the first team of neurosurgeons ever to perform a human "commissurotomy" -- severing the connection between the brain's left and right hemispheres. The procedure was effective in treating the patient's severe epilepsy, as hoped, but had some other fascinating unintended consequences. The hemispheres were able to think and behave independently in ways that surprised everybody.
It proved that each hemisphere has a different set of talents: for example, in the average brain, language and logical thought dwell in the left half while spatial and whole-situation awareness are the specialty of the right. Even more astonishing, the different halves often held different personalities, desires and ambitions. The implications for neuropsychology and the philosophy of mind were great, and Bogen continued to study the lessons from these "split brain" patients for a long time. His research focus wass the investigation of consciousness from a neuroscientific point of view.
The following timeline highlights years
from Bogen's life. Each year contains a link to the different places to
facilitate further study or answer questions aobut that area.
Undergraduate at California Institute of Technology
US Navy Radar School
Navy Service in South
Whittier College, A.B.
University of Cinncinatti, Zoology degree
Mathematics degree, University
of California, Los Angeles
MD at the University of Southern
Intern at New York
Assistant in Surgery at New York Hospital
National Research Council Fellow in Medical Science
Resident in Neurosurgery, White
Res. Associate in
Neurophysiology. Loma Linda University
Asst. in Neurology,
California College of Medicine
American Board of Neurological
Associate Cinical Professor, USC
Clinical Professor, USC
Adjunct Professor, UCLA
Visiting Professor, California Institute of Technology