The Divided Brain Clinic
with Iain McGilchrist: Live in Australia

The Divided Brain Clinic: The Master & His Emissary

Two-day workshops with Iain McGilchrist:
Melbourne, Brisbane & Sydney: 2020

Iain McGilchrist

…is a former Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford, an associate Fellow of Green Templeton College, Oxford, a Fellow of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, a Consultant Emeritus of the Bethlem and Maudsley Hospital, London, a former research Fellow in Neuroimaging at Johns Hopkins University Medical School, Baltimore, and a former Fellow of the Institute of Advanced Studies in Stellenbosch, who now lives on the Isle of Skye, off the coast of North West Scotland, where he continues to write, and lectures worldwide.

He is committed to the idea that the mind and brain can be understood only by seeing them in the broadest possible context, that of the whole of our physical and spiritual existence, and of the wider human culture in which they arise – the culture which helps to mould, and in turn is moulded by, our minds and brains.

The Master and His Emissary: The Divided Brain and the Making of the Western World

by Iain McGilchrist

“A dazzling masterpiece, hugely ambitious and the most comprehensive, profound book ever written on brain laterality, which examines how our two brain hemispheres differ, relate to each other, and the huge implications of this discovery. We have two brain hemispheres, each capable of functioning independently. Each has a different point of view about the world. The right hemisphere – long thought of as “non-dominant” – is actually the Master, perceiving the world more directly, holistically and in context; the left is its Emissary, meant to serve the Master by developing more focused attention, when called for, and creating maps of the world. McGilchrist shows, through a brilliantly rich survey of the Western world, how in different eras, the arts, sciences, philosophy and even psychological health flourish when the balance between left and right is maintained. But our brains are plastic, and today, the plastic left hemisphere has become too dominant, inhibiting the right, and thinks itself the Master (this is not simply an anthropomorphism; the left hemisphere does not see its limitations, and confuses the maps it makes for the world it maps).

Our art, aesthetics, philosophy, technologies, even our legal systems and bureaucracies show these stifling effects, and new kinds of mental illnesses have emerged. One puts down this beautifully written, profound, philosophically sophisticated book thinking psychiatrist and former Oxford English professor McGilchrist might just be one of the most learned people in Europe.”

Professor Norman Doidge

Author of "The Brain That Changes Itself", University of Toronto & Columbia University, NY

I hope you will come away from this workshop feeling that you have never attended one like it before, and that you have learnt to think about both your clients and yourselves in a new way.

The focus of our time together will be what we can learn from hemisphere differences, my principal subject of study for the last 30 years. You can forget most of what you think you know about the topic. The truth is far more fascinating, and lies at the heart of what it means to be a human being. We are used to thinking of the brain as a machine. But in important ways it is nothing like a machine. And when something changes in a patient’s brain, it is not like a component in a machine breaking down: the whole system reconfigures, and with it so does the subject’s reality.

Iain McGilchrist

The Divided Brain: The Master and His Emissary

Iain McGilchrist at

Iain McGilchrist’s workshop is still some time off but in the meantime he’s online at, along with other renowned figures such as Janina Fisher, Bessel van der Kolk and Pat Ogden, offering his series on the “Divided Brain Clinic”.

The Divided Brain Clinic: The Master & His Emissary

Two-day workshops with Iain McGilchrist:
Melbourne, Brisbane & Sydney: 2020


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