"The guiding question of the present effort should thus be formulated: What should we do so that consciousness of the brain does not purely and simply coincide with the spirit of capitalism? We will formulate the following thesis: today, the true sense of plasticity is hidden, and we tend constantly to substitute for it its mistaken cognate, flexibility. The difference between these two terms appears insignificant. Nevertheless, flexibility is the ideological avatar of plasticity—at once its mask, its diversion, and its confiscation. We are entirely ignorant of plasticity but not at all of flexibility. In this sense, plasticity appears as the coming consciousness of flexibility. At first glance, the meanings of these two terms are the same. Under the heading “flexibility,” the dictionary gives: “firstly, the character of that which is flexible, of that which is easily bent (elasticity, suppleness); secondly, the ability to change with ease in order to adapt oneself to the circumstances.” The examples given to illustrate the second meaning are those that everybody knows: “flexibility on the job, of one’s schedule (flex time, conversion), flexible factories.” The problem is that these significations grasp only one of the semantic registers of plasticity: that of receiving form. To be flexible is to receive a form or impression, to be able to fold oneself, to take the fold, not to give it. To be docile, to not explode. Indeed, what flexibility lacks is the resource of giving form, the power to create, to invent or even to erase an impression, the power to style. Flexibility is plasticity minus its genius."

— Catherine Malabou, What Should We Do With Our Brain? (via fluidstaccato)

Do We Understand Brain Plasticity?


Up until around the 1970s it was widely accepted that throughout adulthood our nervous system was fixed, meaning it was impossible for new neurons to develop after birth. However, a new theory of brain plasticity, also called neuroplasticity, has become he current accepted theory of how…


Otto F K. Deiters, 1865. Drawings of stained neurons in the spinal chord with soma, nucleus, dendrites and axons.

A scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of a freeze-fractured cross section through a nerve bundle. 
Axons (brown) of nerve cells are surrounded by insulating cells called the myeline sheet (purple). These allow for more efficient conduction of nerve impulses along these huge cells. The sciatic nerve in mammals goes from the base of the spine, to the bottom of your feet. These cells can reach up to more than a meter depending on how tall you are. The perinuerium is the connective tissue (blue) that surrounds the structure.
(Source: Facebook - NeuronsWantFood)
For more information on neurons, feel free to check out this wiki page on them!

Making memories in real time. 
"Neurons are extremely sensitive to any kind of disturbance, which makes difficult for scientists to study the molecular processes which occur during memory formation. This may have been resolved by researchers at Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University, who published two studies in the January 24 issue of Science, which used advanced imaging techniques to provide a window into how the brain makes memories. These studies were made possible by using a mouse model developed at Einstein in which molecules crucial to making memories were given fluorescent "tags" so they could be observed traveling in real time in living brain cells."

Formation of Thought

Taken by Robert Ludlow of UCL’s Institute of Neurology, the image is a rare shot of a living brain - a view normally only seen by neurosurgeons, showing veins, arteries and grey matter flushed pink with blood. This photo won the 2012 Wellcom Prize for microscope photography. [source]

“Devotion”, 1913, Egon Schiele.