A new science piece in Expert Witness looks at handedness and brain asymmetry, once regarded as unique to humans — but widespread among animals, and a factor in language and tool use. An excerpt:
Although it may be the absence of asymmetry rather than its reversal that can be linked to problems of social or educational adjustment, left-handed individuals have often been regarded as deficient or contrarian, but this may be based more on prejudice than on the facts. Left-handers have excelled in all walks of life. They include five of the past seven US presidents, sports stars such as Rafael Nadal in tennis and Babe Ruth in baseball, and Renaissance man Leonardo da Vinci, perhaps the greatest genius of all time.
Left Brain, Right Brain: Facts and Fantasies by Michael C. Corballis, republished under creative commons licence from the science journal PLOS Biology, is part of our “Expert Witness” occasional series, by experts in their field.