Among the most intriguing questions of neurology is how conceptions of good and evil arise in the human brain. In a world where we encounter god-like forces in nature, and try to transcend them, the development of a neural network dramatizing good against evil seems inevitable. This critical book explores the cosmic dimensions of the brain's inner theatre as revealed by neurology, cognitive science, evolutionary psychology, psychoanalysis, primatology and exemplary Western performances. In theatre, film, and television, supernatural figures express the brain's anatomical features as humans transform their natural environment into cosmic and theological spaces in order to grapple with their vulnerability in the world.
Mark Pizzato, MFA, PhD, is Professor of Theatre and Film at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte, USA. He is the author of Edges of Loss: From Modern Drama to Postmodern Theory (University of Michigan, 1998), Theatres of Human Sacrifice: From Ancient Ritual to Screen Violence (SUNY, 2005), Ghosts of Theatre and Cinema in the Brain (Palgrave, 2006), Inner Theatres of Good and Evil: The Mind's Staging of Gods, Angels and Devils (McFarland, 2011), and Beast-People Onscreen and in Your Brain (Praeger, 2016). Dr. Pizzato also co-edited, with Lisa Perdigao, Death in American Texts and Performances (Routledge, 2016).