Curriculum Vitae/Contact Information

Moti Nissani (June 2014)

Bruxism Hypertext


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A Revolutionary's Toolkit

Selected Academic Writings

Sounds of English

 Elephant Corner


Academic Employment

Temporary Positions

March 2003:  Visiting Professor, Department of Zoology, Yangon University, Yangon, Burma (Myanmar).

November 2002-February 2003:  Elephant researcher, Kyet Shar, Magu, and Myaing Hay Wun Logging Camps, Burma (Myanmar).

August-November 2002:  Teaching English and conducting faculty workshops, New Hong Hu First Middle School, 1 East Wenquan Road, Hong Hu City, Hubei Province, 433200, People's Republic of China.

July-Sept. 2000:  U.S.I.A.-sponsored American Studies specialist, Central Department of English, Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu, Nepal (8 weeks).

1998: Visiting Professor, Instituto Superior de Ciencias Medicas, Santiago de Cuba (5 weeks).

1995-96: Senior Fulbright Scholar, Central Department of English, Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu, Nepal (10 months).

1978-79: Individual National Research Service Award (from the National Institutes of Health--1 year).
Undergraduate Courses Taught (Number of Semesters)

As a Teaching Assistant: Introduction to Psychology (2) / Genetics (3) / Biology (1).

As a Member of a Team:  Science and Religion (1) / Third World Perspectives (1) / Development of Western Culture (1).

As a Single Instructor or as a Coordinator of a Team: Biology Today (1) / What is Science? (2) / Changing Life on Earth (introduction to biology) (4) / Animal and Human Nature (1) / Health Concepts and Strategies (4) / Atoms & Stars (an introduction to astronomy, physics, and the nature of science) (7) / Introduction to the University and its Libraries (1) / Practical Mathematics: Concepts and Applications (3) / The History and Concepts of Mathematics: An Interdisciplinary Introduction (5) / Living in the Environment (human ecology) (5) / Critical Thinking (5) / Case for Interdisciplinarity (1) / Written Communication Skills (freshman composition) (5) / Developmental Reading and Writing (1) / Interdisciplinary Studies Seminar (3) / Interdisciplinary Core Seminar (4) / Senior Seminar (2) / Intermediate Reading & Writing (4) / Media in America (2) / Elephants: An Interdisciplinary Perspective (1), Senior Essay/Project (4), Capstone Project (2), World War I as a Turning Point (1), Senior Seminar:  Around the World in One Semester (1), Computers & Society (2).

100% Online Courses

Graduate Courses Taught

Free Instructional Hypertexts:

Computers & Society  Critical Reading   /  Reading and Writing   /  Freshman Introduction to College and Interdisciplinarity /  A Historical Introduction to Astronomy, Physics, and the Nature of Science  /  Around the World in One Semester (interdisciplinary geography)  /  World War I  (interdisciplinary history) /

Faculty Workshops

Invited Talks

Refereed Journal & Book Essays

  1.   A new behavioral bioassay for an analysis of sexual attraction and pheromones in insects. Journal of Experimental Zoology 192: 271-275 (1975).

  2. Cell lineage analysis of kynurenine producing organs in Drosophila melanogaster. Genetical Research 26: 63-72 (1975).

  3. Gynandromorph analysis of some aspects of sexual behaviour of Drosophila melanogaster. Animal Behaviour 25: 555-566 (1977).

  4. Cell lineage analysis of germ cells of Drosophila melanogaster. Nature 265: 729-731 (1977).

  5. A study of germinal mosaicism in Drosophila melanogaster. Wilhelm Roux's Archives of Developmental Biology 182: 203-211 (1977).

  6. On the interpretation of mutagenically-induced mosaicism in Drosophila. Genetics 86: 779-787 (1977).

  7. (Nissani, M. & Lipow, C.). A method for estimating the number of blastoderm cells which give rise to Drosophila imaginal discs. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 49: 3-8 (1977).

  8. (Nissani, M. & Liu, C. P.). Experiments with the maroon-like mutation of Drosophila melanogaster. Genetical Research 29: 159-170 (1977).

  9. (Nissani, M. & Fellinger, K.). A method for studying tissue specificity of maternally affected Drosophila mutants: mosaic analysis of cinnamon. Developmental Biology 66: 117-127 (1978).

  10. (Nissani, M. Brink, N. & Nissani H.). The site of function of the Y chromosome in Drosophila melanogaster males. Molecular and General Genetics 165: 221-224 (1978).

  11. An experimental paradigm for the study of conceptual conservatism and change. Psychological Reports 65: 19-24 (1989).

  12. A hands-on instructional approach to the conceptual shift aspect of scientific discovery. Journal of College Science Teaching 19: 105-107 (1989).

  13. A class exercise for teaching the genetic code. The Science Teacher 56 (No. 3): 76-78 (1989).

  14. A cognitive reinterpretation of Stanley Milgram's observations on obedience to authority. American Psychologist 45: 1384-1385 (1990).

  15. (Nissani, M. & Hoefler-Nissani, D. M.). Experimental studies of belief-dependence of observations and of resistance to conceptual change. Cognition and Instruction 9: 97-111 (1992).

  16. Psychological, historical, and ethical reflections on the Mendelian paradox. Perspectives in Biology and Medicine 37: 182-196 (1994).

  17. (Nissani, M., Maier, C. L. & Shifrin, N.). A guided discovery exercise for introductory physics labs. The Physics Teacher 32: 104-107 (1994).

  18.   Conceptual conservatism: an understated variable in human affairs? Social Science Journal 31: 307-318 (1994).

  19.   Phases of the moon: a guided discovery activity for clarifying the nature of science. Science Activities 31 (#3): 26-29 (1994).

  20. The plight of the obscure innovator in science. Social Studies of Science 25: 165-183 (1995).

  21. An experiential component in teaching philosophy of science. Teaching Philosophy 18: 147-154 (1995).

  22. Fruits, salads, and smoothies: a working definition of interdisciplinarity. Journal of Educational Thought 29: 119-126 (1995).

  23. Conceptual conservatism in literature. Literary Studies (a Nepali journal) 15: 22-37 (1996).

  24. Dancing flies: a guided discovery illustration of the nature of science. American Biology Teacher 58 (#3): 168-171 (1996).

  25. The greenhouse effect: an interdisciplinary perspective. Population and Environment: A Journal of Interdisciplinary Studies 17: 459-489 (1996).

  26. The apprenticeship approach to writing instruction. Visible Language 30 (#3): 284-313 (1996).

  27. Can the persistence of misconceptions be generalized and explained? Journal of Thought 32 (#1): 69-76 (1997).

  28. Ten cheers for interdisciplinarity. Social Science Journal 34 (#2): 201-216 (1997).

  29. Brass-tacks ecology. The Trumpeter, 14 (#3): 143-148 (1997).

  30. Media coverage of the greenhouse effect, Population and Environment: A Journal of Interdisciplinary Studies 21: 27-43 (1999).

  31. Can taste aversion prevent bruxism?   Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback, 25 (#1), March 2000, 45-56. 

  32. A bibliographical survey of bruxism with special emphasis on non-traditional treatment modalities.  Journal of Oral Science, 43 (2): 73-83  (2001).

  33. Theory of Mind and Insight in Chimpanzees, Elephants, and Other Animals? Chapter 7 of:  Comparative Vertebrate Cognition.  Rogers, Lesley J & Kaplan, Gisela (eds.), pp. 227-261 (January 2004).  [No. 4 of Series:  Developments in Primatology:  Progress and Prospects.  Russell H. Tuttle, Series Editor.]  Kluwer Academic / Plenum Publishers: New York.

  34. (Nissani, M., Hoefler-Nissani, D. Lay, U T., & Htun, U W.)  Simultaneous Visual Discrimination in Asian Elephants.  Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 83: 15-29 (2005).

  35. Do Asian elephants apply causal reasoning to tool use tasks? Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Behavior Processes, 31: 91-96 (2006).

  36. (Nissani, M., Hoefler-Nissani, D.)Absence of Mirror Self-Referential Behavior in Two Asian Elephants. Absence of Mirror Self-Referential Behavior in Two Asian Elephants. Absence of Mirror Self-Referential Behavior in Two Asian Elephants. Absence of Mirror Self-Referential Behavior in Two Asian Elephants.   Absence of Mirror Self-Referential Behavior in Two Asian Elephants.  Journal of Medical and Biological Sciences, Vol. 1, Issue 1 (2006).  

  37. Do Asian Elephants (Elephas maximus) Apply Causal Reasoning to Tool-Use Tasks? Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Behavior Processes, Volume 32(1), January 2006, pages 91-96 (a summary is available here).

  38. Elephant Cognition: A Review of Recent Experiments.  Gajah 28 (2008), 44-52.

  39. Do Elephants, Chimpanzees, and Dolphins Think?  (Reflections on an Unfortunate Paradigm Shift in Ethology).  A Talk Given at the 30th International Ethological Conference, August 18, 2007, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada

Patents: United States Patent 6,164,278, December 26, 2000.  Taste-Based Approach to the Prevention of Teeth Clenching and Grinding.


Film: (with Donna Nissani).  The Inner Life of Elephants:  Experiments in Myanmar and Detroit (2004).

Textbook: Nissani, M. & Lohani, Shreedhar P. Flax-Golden Tales: An Interdisciplinary Approach to the Teaching of English, 496 pages.  Kathmandu: Ekta Books (an extensive revision of the same authors' Adventures in English, 1996).  Accompanying materials include:

Current Projects:

--Book nearing completion: Eight Billion Cheers for Direct Democracy.

--Documenting the unspeakable crimes of the world's controllers.  In part, these crimes consist of robbing us of the few freedoms and possessions we have left; brutally suppressing and assassinating friends of the biosphere and the people; controlling our every thought and desire; provoking chaos, civil wars, and hunger the world over; and irreversibly destroying the very physical and biological foundations of life on earth.

--Convincing the few of us who are aware and who care that we must focus more of our energies on the overthrow of our criminal rulers--and far less on documenting their never-ending depravities.

--Showing that there is only one strategy that has some chance of overthrowing our psychopathic rulers. For a few variations of this strategy, see: 1. Restoration of Democracy in Thebes  2. The Al-Sabbah Brigade  3. The Four Just Men. 4. Revolutionary Lessons from Ira Levin’s “This Perfect Day."  

--Arguing that the world's vicious, self-destructive, oligarchic system ought to be replaced with real democracies.

The questions we face are these:  How do we overthrow our rulers, that is, the likes of the late David Rockefeller (above), Evelyn Rothschild, and a handful of other monstrously conniving bankers, royals, clerics, and spooks?  And, how do we replace their vicious oligarchic system with . . . 

We the People?

  Moti Nissani's Homepage