Gertner, L; Henik, A; Cohen Kadosh, R; (2009) When 9 is not on the right: implications from number-form synaesthesia. Consciousness and Cognition , 18 366 - 374.
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Number-form synesthetes consciously experience numbers in spatially-defined locations. For non-synesthete individuals, a similar association of numbers and space appears in the form of an implicit mental number line as signified by the distance effect―reaction time decreases as the distance between compared numbers increases. In the current experiment, three number-form synesthetes and two different non-synesthete control groups (Hebrew speaking and English speaking) performed a number comparison task. Synesthete participants exhibited a sizeable distance effect only when presented numbers were congruent with their number-form. In contrast, the controls exhibited a distance effect regardless of congruency or presentation type. The findings suggest that: a) number-form synesthesia impairs the ability to represent numbers in a flexible manner according to task demands; b) number-form synesthesia is a genuine tangible experience, triggered involuntarily; c) the classic mental number line can be more pliable than previously thought and appear to be independent of cultural-lingo direction.
|Title:||When 9 is not on the right: implications from number-form synaesthesia|
|UCL classification:||UCL > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Psychology and Language Sciences (Division of) > Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience|
UCL > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
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