Aphantasia  

From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia

Jump to: navigation, search

Related e

Google
Wikipedia
Wiktionary
Wiki Commons
Wikiquote
Wikisource
YouTube
Shop


Featured:
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
Enlarge
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Aphantasia is the suggested name for a condition where one does not possess a functioning mind's eye and cannot visualize imagery. but has remained largely unstudied since. Interest in the phenomenon renewed after the publication of a study conducted by a team led by Prof. Adam Zeman of the University of Exeter, which also coined the term aphantasia. Research on the subject is still scarce, but further studies are being planned.

Contents

History

The phenomenon was first described by Francis Galton in 1880 in a statistical study about mental imagery. Galton described it as a common phenomenon among his peers. ["To my astonishment, I found that the great majority of the men of science to whom I first applied, protested that mental imagery was unknown to them, and they looked on me as fanciful and fantastic in supposing that the words 'mental imagery' really expressed what I believed everybody supposed them to mean. They had no more notion of its true nature than a colour-blind man who has not discerned his defect has of the nature of colour." (Galton, 1880)] However, it remained largely unstudied until 2005, when Prof. Adam Zeman of the University of Exeter was approached by a man who seemed to have lost the ability to visualize after undergoing minor surgery. A team led by Zeman published finally its findings in 2015, sparking renewed interest in the phenomenon, which they now termed aphantasia. Research on the subject is still scarce, but further studies are being planned.

In popular culture

In April 2016 an essay by Blake Ross was published on Facebook, describing his own aphantasia and his recent realisation that not everyone experiences it. His account gained wide circulation on social media.[1]

Related concepts

Aphantasia is similar to color blindness, face blindness, word blindness and tone deafness in being an invisible disability.

See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Aphantasia" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

Personal tools