In Julia Simner & Edward Hubbard (eds.), Oxford Handbook of Synesthesia. Oxford University Press. pp. 265 (2013)

Mechanisms of attention play a crucial role in filtering sensory inputs from the external world, allowing information to be prioritised for goal directed behaviour. To what extent might these same capacity-limited processes influence grapheme-colour synaesthesia, in which letters, numbers or words evoke concurrent experiences of colour? Asking synaesthetes themselves whether attention seems important in their experiences has provided a range of answers. On the one hand, for some synaesthetes, diverting attention can diminish the quality of their synaesthetic colours. On the other, there are suggestions that synaesthetic experiences can themselves alter the manner in which attention is allocated to sensory stimuli in the environment. Here, we review a range of empirical investigations that have examined the role of attention in grapheme-colour synaesthesia. A particular focus of these studies has been the extent to which an inducing stimulus - such as an achromatic letter or digit - must be attended or consciously perceived to trigger a concurrent synaesthetic experience. In most cases, limiting attention or masking inducers tends to reduce or eliminate behavioural evidence of synaesthetic experiences. We also discuss how synaesthesia might improve performance in visual search tasks through post-attentive processes such as grouping, or by facilitating decision-making processes.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Buy the book Find it on
DOI 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199603329.013.0014
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 71,316
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Synesthesia: A Window on the Hard Problem of Consciousness.Jeffrey A. Gray - 2005 - In Lynn C. Robertson & Noam Sagiv (eds.), Synesthesia: Perspectives From Cognitive Neuroscience. Oxford University Press. pp. 127-146.
The Experimental Development of Color-Tone Synesthesia.T. H. Howells - 1944 - Journal of Experimental Psychology 34 (2):87.
Oxford Handbook of Synesthesia.Julia Simner & Edward M. Hubbard (eds.) - 2013 - Oxford University Press.
Synesthesia in Perspective.Noam Sagiv - 2005 - In Robertson, C. L. & N. Sagiv (eds.), Synesthesia: Perspectives From Cognitive Neuroscience. Oxford University Press.


Added to PP index

Total views
25 ( #458,145 of 2,519,499 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #271,332 of 2,519,499 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes