Mapping Rhetorical Topologies in Cognitive Neuroscience

  • Jordynn Jack
  • L. Gregory Appelbaum
  • Elizabeth Beam
  • James Moody
  • Scott A. Huettel


Many tools that neuroscientists use to trace the complex topography of the human brain draw on the neuroscience literature to yield “metanalyses” or “syntheses of data.” These approaches conflate rhetorical connections in the literature with physical connections in the brain. By contrast, the model presented in this chapter seeks not a topography of the brain but a topology of neuroscience. A social network analysis of titles and abstracts for cognitive neuroscience articles yields a topology of brain regions and functions. This map can help researchers identify underresearched areas (e.g., the thalamus) or areas that are oversaturated (e.g., the amygdala). The map also helps researchers identify subdisciplines, such as “neuroeconomics,” that have not yet integrated with the broader field—“islands” where rhetorical work could yield benefits.


Special Topic Anterior Cingulate Cortex Common Topic Social Network Analysis Cognitive Neuroscience 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jordynn Jack
    • 1
  • L. Gregory Appelbaum
    • 2
  • Elizabeth Beam
    • 3
  • James Moody
    • 4
  • Scott A. Huettel
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of English and Comparative LiteratureUniversity of North CarolinaChapel HillUSA
  2. 2.Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral SciencesDuke University School of MedicineDurhamUSA
  3. 3.Stanford University School of MedicineStanfordUSA
  4. 4.Department of SociologyDuke UniversityDurhamUSA
  5. 5.Department of Psychology and NeuroscienceDuke UniversityDurhamUSA

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