The role of canonical hand representations and spatiolateral semantics in mental rotation of hands

Ryo Ishibashi, Satoru Saito

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Previous studies on the mental representation of body parts have shown that both proprioceptive information and canonical images of hands affect the mental motor imagery of one's own hands. In two mental hand-rotation experiments in which verbal responses were required, we addressed the role of the semantics of laterality in manipulating canonical images of hands. The results suggested that oral responses that recruited the words right or left facilitated the use of canonical representations of hands in performing the motor imagery. In contrast, responses entailing arbitrary sounds ke or to resulted in stable effects of the postural information provided by participants' own hands, indicating that canonical hand images were not used (indicated that participants relied primarily on the proprioceptive information of their actual hands). The findings support our assumption that spatiolateral semantics underpin the use of canonical hand representations in certain mental processes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)633-640
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Cognitive Psychology
Volume23
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Aug 1
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Body image
  • Mental rotation
  • Semantics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology

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