Description of Concept
Human brains consist of two halves, and these two halves, or hemispheres, provide different functions for the person. On the left side, our brain handles numbers, logic, words, analysis, and linear sequences. We might call this the “rigid” or calculated side of the brain. On the right side, we find creativity, musical and rhythmic intuition, spatial awareness, color sensitivity, and imagination. People often call this the “artistic” side of the brain. According R. Carter (2004), the two halves word together. While one side might dominate a person’s thinking, no one exclusively uses a single hemisphere, rather, all people combine both halves with typically a preference for one mode or the other.
Description of Material
The recent Ebola problems in the United States have caused controversy among hospitals. A recent article in The Atlantic shows that reporters and government officials question whether or not the medical facilities in the US are ready for the virus. They have doubted the ability of nurses and doctors to adequately handle Ebola, pointing to the training and procedures employed in the hospitals. In addition to this, the sanitary measures have proven worse than expected, even while the hospitals have abundant supplies. The Ebola virus also carries a certain aura, a fear-invoking mystery that affects both civilians and those in the medical profession.
Relation of Concept and Material
The recent Ebola issue provides a catalyst for understanding the dual hemispheres of the human brain. Let’s consider a statement from the article mentioned above. Commenting on the accusations against an ill-prepared Texas hospital, O. Khazan (2014) writes, “It would be one thing if Dallas was uniquely ill-equipped to handle Ebola. But increasingly, nurses’ groups from around the country are saying that their members have received little training in how to process a suspected Ebola case.” How might we consider this statement from the perspective of left and right brain?
On the left side, we analyze the issue, aiming to distill facts and falsehood and anything in between. We recognize that the nurses might indeed be ill-equipped. However, the left brain logical also nurtures suspicion, so we question the reliability or motivations of the increasing reports from nurses. Maybe they simply want more funding or training or hope for a guiltless plea if Ebola enters their hospital. Also from the left side, we wonder about the solution and logical implications. How can we solve this problem among the medical field? And if the government does propose a solution, where will its quality stand? These analytic, problem-solving, and evaluative habits characterize the left half of the human brain.
On the right side, we might sympathize with the nurses, or simply find the article and Ebola issue uninteresting. The right half of our brain does not specialize in solving problems or analyzing issues. Rather, it prefers to create and views the world more optimistically. Problems such as the Ebola virus in the United States bore the right half. It would rather compose a song about the people involved with Ebola or write a story recounting the trials of a hospital. Reporting in news articles seems to constrained and linear, thus news probably attracts more left-brained people.
Considering the two hemispheres of the brain with the aid of a news article shows the strengths and weaknesses of both halves. Understanding these functions helps us to better understand people. I can then relate, communicate, and listen to my family better, because I know my brother is a left-brained guy. On the other hand, I better understand myself, as a right brained person who still appreciates the left, I need to endeavor to balance my hemispheres and use the best of both sides. Also, with issues like Ebola, how might we report and discuss the problem in left brain and right brain methods? The US community would benefit from a scope of thinking styles, especially with something as important as the Ebola virus.