Cognitive Variations: Reflections on the Unity and Diversity of the Human Mind

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1 University Press Scholarship Online You are looking at 1-10 of 29 items for: keywords : color perception Cognitive Variations: Reflections on the Unity and Diversity of the Human Mind Geoffrey Lloyd Published in print: 2007 Published Online: ISBN: eisbn: Item type: book acprof:oso/ This book presents a study of the problems posed by the unity and diversity of the human mind. On the one hand, as humans we all share broadly the same anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, and certain psychological capabilities the capacity to learn a language, for instance. On the other, different individuals and groups have very different talents, tastes, and beliefs, for instance about how they see themselves, other humans and the world around them. These issues are highly charged, for any denial of psychic unity savours of racism, while many assertions of psychic diversity raise the spectres of arbitrary relativism, the incommensurability of beliefs systems, and their mutual unintelligibility. The book examines where different types of arguments, scientific, philosophical, anthropological and historical, can take us. It discusses colour perception, spatial cognition, animal and plant taxonomy, the emotions, ideas of health and well-being, concepts of the self, agency and causation, varying perceptions of the distinction between nature and culture, and reasoning itself. It pays attention to the multidimensionality of the phenomena to be apprehended and to the diversity of manners, or styles, of apprehending them. The weight to be given to different factors, physical, biological, psychological, cultural, ideological, varies as between different subject areas and sometimes even within a single area. The book uses recent work in social anthropology, linguistics, cognitive science, neurophysiology, and the history of ideas to redefine the problems and clarify how our evident psychic diversity can be reconciled with our shared humanity. Page 1 of 6

2 Relatively Speaking: An Account of the Relationship between Language and Thought in the Color Domain Debi Roberson and J. Richard Hanley in Words and the Mind: How words capture human experience Published in print: 2010 Published Online: May 2010 ISBN: eisbn: Page 2 of 6 acprof:oso/ This chapter is divided into six sections. The first sets out the background of the debate about the relationship between language and cognition in the color domain. The second explains how recent studies of color recognition employing visual search tasks have clarified this relationship. This section also argues that these studies point to the existence of two separate systems that influence perception and categorization of color; one of which is linguistically based, and one of which is not affected by language. The third section critically evaluates recent claims that there are similarities between color terms in the world's languages that point to the existence of color universals. The fourth section examines children's color term acquisition in an attempt to trace the mechanisms by which color categories are acquired. It also discusses whether infants have an innate prepartitioned organization of color categories that is overridden during the learning process. The two final sections outline some outstanding questions, note some methodological constraints on the conclusions that can be drawn from the accumulated evidence, and argue that much more empirical investigation is still needed in this field. The Gestalt Period Alan Gilchrist in Seeing Black and White Published in print: 2006 Published Online: ISBN: eisbn: acprof:oso/ The third period of lightness theory saw the arrival of the Gestalt psychologists, with their penetrating insights and dramatic experiments. Rejecting the clumsy two-stage conception of raw sensations and cognitive interpretation, they proposed a single perceptual process that was parsimonious and elegant. The emergence of Gestalt theory is often tied to the 1912 publication of Max Wertheimer's paper on apparent motion. But the Gestaltists did not really turn their attention to lightness until the early 1930s. When they did, they turned the field upside down. In the short space of five years they published a series of devastating

3 crucial experiments. David Katz, who represented the standard view of lightness, was in retreat on every issue on which Gestalt theory challenged him. The Gestalt period was cut short by the tragic events surrounding World War II. Introduction Alan Gilchrist in Seeing Black and White Published in print: 2006 Published Online: ISBN: eisbn: acprof:oso/ Color perception requires a distinction between both chromatic colors and achromatic colors. These are funny terms: the first is redundant, the second is an oxymoron colored colors and non-colored colors. This introduction looks at the perception of achromatic colors, sometimes called neutral colors or nonselective colors. By extension, the discussion includes the achromatic dimension of chromatic colors. For example, pink differs from maroon only on this dimension. The emphasis is on the perception of surface color, which is the property of an object, rather than on the perception of light. The perception of objective properties of the real, everyday world, not isolated patches of light in a dark laboratory, is explored. Color Vision in Goldfish and Other Vertebrates Christa Neumeyer in How Animals See the World: Comparative Behavior, Biology, and Evolution of Vision Published in print: 2012 Published Online: May 2012 ISBN: eisbn: acprof:oso/ This chapter adopts a psychophysical approach to studying color vision and reviews the evolution of color perception in vertebrates. Color vision in goldfish is described as an example before data from other vertebrate species are given for comparison. Comparing the color vision systems in different vertebrate taxa based on behavioral data indicates that a highly developed trichromatic or tetrachromatic color vision must be a very old invention of vertebrates, as it occurs in fishes, amphibia, reptiles, and birds. In mammals, this type of color vision is widely absent and had obviously been reinvented by Old World primates. Page 3 of 6

4 Perceptual Coherence: Hearing and seeing Stephen Handel Published in print: 2006 Published Online: ISBN: eisbn: Item type: book acprof:oso/ This book describes the conceptual similarities and differences between auditory and visual perception. The incoming energy is a single world containing objects, events, and various sources of light and acoustic energy. The energy is neutral; it does not specify the objects itself, so the sensory systems must abstract the information from the correlated sensory energy that does specify objects and differentiate that energy from the uncorrelated sensory noise energy. The first three chapters in this book are introductory. They describe properties of the auditory and visual worlds, how the hierarchical organization of the auditory and visual systems transform the local processing due to receptive fields into global percepts. In addition, these chapters discuss whether those receptive fields are designed to maximize information transmission and whether notions of sparse coding can explain the auditory and visual neural encoding. Each of the six remaining chapters considers one kind of perceiving: auditory and visual textures; detection of first- and secondorder motion; gaining control, contrast, and internal and external noise; color perception; timbre perception; and auditory and visual object segmentation. Given that the perceptual goals and perceptual variables for hearing and seeing are equivalent, namely to build a coherent perceptual world, the rules and heuristics will be the same for both senses. Surface Colour Perception and Environmental Constraints Laurence T. Maloney in Colour Perception: Mind and the physical world Published in print: 2003 Published Online: March 2012 ISBN: eisbn: acprof:oso/ This chapter demonstrates that human surface colour perception can be modelled as algorithms that, over certain ranges of environmental conditions, manage to assign colours to objects that are in correspondence with specific, objective properties of the object's surface, called intrinsic colours. The chapter suggests that under certain circumstances, human observers do seem to estimate intrinsic surface colours accurately. Environmental constraints permit us to succeed in Page 4 of 6

5 perceiving stable surface colours. These constraints can be thought of as a list of precise assertions concerning a visual scene. If all of the assertions on the list are true of the scene, then human colour vision, confined to a specified environment, will assign colours to surfaces in that scene that are the same as those it assigns to these surfaces in another scene that also satisfies these assertions. Effects of Modal versus Amodal Completion Upon Visual Attention: A Function for Filling-In? Greg Davis and Jon Driver in Filling-In: From Perceptual Completion to Cortical Reorganization Published in print: 2003 Published Online: May 2009 ISBN: eisbn: acprof:oso/ This chapter focuses on the possible functional differences between modal and amodal completion in relation to visual attention. A review of visual-search experiments suggests that both modal and amodal completion may arise preattentively, that is, at parallel stages of vision, and even when counter to the observer's intentions. However, the two forms of completion may then differ in their effect upon attention, with attention tending to spread between inducing fragments and completed regions only for the case of modal completion, for which filling-in arises in the completed region. Colour Perception: Mind and the physical world Rainer Mausfeld and Dieter Heyer (eds) Published in print: 2003 Published Online: March 2012 ISBN: eisbn: Item type: book acprof:oso/ Colour has long been a source of fascination to both scientists and philosophers. In one sense, colours are in the mind of the beholder, in another sense they belong to the external world. Colours appear to lie on the boundary where we have divided the world into objective and subjective events. They represent, more than any other attribute of our visual experience, a place where both physical and mental properties are interwoven in an intimate and enigmatic way. The last few decades have brought fascinating changes in the way that we think about colour and the role colour plays in our perceptual architecture. This book provides an overview of the contemporary developments in our understanding of colours and of the relationship between the mental Page 5 of 6

6 and the physical. With each chapter followed by critical commentaries, the volume presents a lively and accessible picture of the intellectual traditions which have shaped research into colour perception. Objectivity and Subjectivity Revisited: Colour as a Psychobiological Property Gary Hatfield in Colour Perception: Mind and the physical world Published in print: 2003 Published Online: March 2012 ISBN: eisbn: acprof:oso/ This chapter focuses on the notion of colour as a property of the surfaces of objects. It examines the arguments of objectivists who seek to reduce colour to a physical property of object surfaces. Subjectivists, by constrast, seek to argue that no such reduction is possible, and hence that colour must be wholly subjective. This chapter presents a relationalist position that best accommodates the primary data concerning colour perception, and permits a better understanding of the ways in which colour is both objective and subjective. It ends with a reconsideration of the notions of objectivity and subjectivity themselves, and a consideration of how modern technology can foster misleading expectations about the specificity of colour properties. Page 6 of 6

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