Grapheme-color synesthesia is an atypical condition in which individuals experience sensations of color when reading printed graphemes such as letters and digits. For some grapheme-color synesthetes, seeing a printed grapheme triggers a sensation of color, but hearing the name of a grapheme does not. This dissociation allowed us to compare the precision with which synesthetes are able to match their color experiences triggered by visible graphemes, with the precision of their matches for recalled colors based on the same graphemes spoken aloud. In six synesthetes, color matching for printed graphemes was equally variable relative to recalled experiences. In a control experiment, synesthetes and age-matched controls either matched the color of a circular patch while it was visible on a screen, or they judged its color from memory after it had disappeared. Both synesthetes and controls were more variable when matching from memory, and the variance of synesthetes' recalled color judgments matched that associated with their synesthetic judgments for visible graphemes in the first experiment. Results suggest that synesthetic experiences of color triggered by achromatic graphemes are analogous to recollections of color.
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance|
|Publication status||Published - Oct 2012|
- color perception
- grapheme-color synesthesia