Unconscious priming eliminates automatic binding of colour and alphanumeric form in synaesthesia

Mattingley, JB, Rich, AN, Yelland, G and Bradshaw, JL (2001) Unconscious priming eliminates automatic binding of colour and alphanumeric form in synaesthesia. Nature, 410 6828: 580-582. doi:10.1038/35069062


Author Mattingley, JB
Rich, AN
Yelland, G
Bradshaw, JL
Title Unconscious priming eliminates automatic binding of colour and alphanumeric form in synaesthesia
Journal name Nature   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0028-0836
Publication date 2001-01-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1038/35069062
Volume 410
Issue 6828
Start page 580
End page 582
Total pages 3
Place of publication London
Publisher Macmillan Publishers Ltd
Language eng
Abstract Synaesthesia is an unusual perceptual phenomenon in which events in one sensory modality induce vivid sensations in another(1,2). Individuals may 'taste' shapes(3),'hear' colours', or 'feel' sounds(5). Synaesthesia was first described over a century ago(6), but little is known about its underlying causes or its effects on cognition. Most reports have been anecdotal or have focused on isolated unusual cases(3,7-9). Here we report an investigation of 15 individuals with colour-graphemic synaesthesia, each of whom experiences idiosyncratic but highly consistent colours for letters and digits. Using a colour-form interference paradigm, we show that induced synaesthetic experiences cannot be consciously suppressed even when detrimental to task performance. In contrast, if letters and digits are presented briefly and masked, so that they are processed but unavailable for overt report, the synaesthesia is eliminated. These results show that synaesthetic experiences fan be prevented despite substantial processing of the sensory stimuli that otherwise trigger them. We conclude that automatic binding of colour and alphanumeric form in synaesthesia arises after initial processes of letter and digit recognition are complete.
Keyword Multidisciplinary Sciences
Perception
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Unknown

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: Queensland Brain Institute Publications
 
Versions
Version Filter Type
Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 187 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 197 times in Scopus Article | Citations
Google Scholar Search Google Scholar
Created: Wed, 17 Oct 2007, 21:09:20 EST