Why we love (Helen Fisher)
August 16, 2012
Why We Love by Helen Fisher is an amazing journey into the intricacies of the brain in love. Helen Fisher is a renowned anthropologist and a leader in the field of research of love, its nature and its chemistry. With amazing candor and eloquence Fisher excavates the human brain whilst high on love and walks you through every step of her reasoning.
Based on patterns observed in the brain - constellations of neurotransmitter activity - Fisher deduces three distinct patterns in which humans feel attracted: love, lust and attachment. She equates these to non-exclusive reproductive strategies, through which evolution optimally wired us to have multiple strategies to procreate.
Another interesting observation by Fisher is that the love constellations in brains of those who got rejected by their beloved, fires up, rather than dies down. Fisher proves that people feel more in love when they face adversity.
Fisher devotes an entire chapter to the brain science of romantic rejection. With a scientific perspective she goes over the feelings involved in a breakup and their root in our evolutionary history. The psychiatrist's model for romantic rejection, where a stage of protest and a stage of resignation/despair are identified, is also discussed at great length.
Needless to say, a profound exploration of the topic of love and a must read for anyone seriously interested in the subject.
A great, in-depth review is available here.