Daniel B. Bitran

Professor of Psychology, College of the Holy Cross

I have a doctorate in biological psychology, a field of study that examines brain-behavior relationships. I run a research program on the neural mechanisms of antipsychotic drugs and on the psychotropic effects of gonadal hormones on brain chemistry and behavior. My research program has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, and from the private sector.

Over the span of nearly thirty years, I have taught across the curriculum in a liberal arts setting, offering courses at the introductory, intermediate, and advanced levels, including courses in introduction to psychology, physiology and behavior, biological basis of mental disorders, and the neurobiology of drugs of abuse.

More recently, I have developed an interest in the study of the Holocaust. (How I came to this from a neuroscience perspective is a convoluted story best told at another time.) More specifically, I have studied the way in which science and medicine was used by the National Socialists in justifying the racial ideology that lead to the near elimination of European Jewry. Two courses I teach relative to this interest are "Science, Medicine, and the Holocaust" in which the Holocaust is used as a vehicle to examine eugenics, genetics, and biomedical ethics; and "History, Memory, and the Holocaust," co-taught with my colleague, Thomas Doughton, in which over a 30-day period we travel through Central Europe visiting many Holocaust-related sites examining how the Holocaust memorials and remembrance are affected by current and historical socio-political forces.

Experience

  • 1992–present
    Professor, Department of Psychology