Mark Johnson is Professor of Pain and Analgesia and Director of the Centre for Pain Research at Leeds Beckett University, and teaches across a wide variety of courses within the School of Health.

Mark has investigated the science of pain for over three decades and is presenting an event at the Leeds International Festival centred around the topic ‘Is pain real?’.

Neuroscientists and philosophers have suggested that conscious awareness may be a controlled hallucination, and that our experience of the world is an illusion of reality. How can this be when everything feels so real? Take pain for example. Pain warns us of tissue damage from injury or disease. We experience pain with such certainty that it seems ridiculous to suggest that it could be an illusion of tissue damage. Yet pain is not visible. Therefore, we start to doubt the existence of pain in another person when we cannot see tissue damage.

Join Professor Mark Johnson on a journey into the peculiar, perplexing and paradoxical world of pain. Mark will challenge the belief of a tight coupling between pain and tissue damage and then demonstrate how the brain constructs our conscious experience by injecting its own information into the perceptual process. Ultimately, he will ask ‘Is Pain Real?'

Book this event here

Professor Mark Johnson

Professor / School of Clinical & Applied Sciences

Mark is Director of the Centre for Pain Research and leads a vibrant team of researchers. He has published over 200 research articles and book chapters and supervises PhD students. Mark teaches across all levels of our taught course provision.

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