Phonological processing of words in right- and left-handers.

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Brain Cogn, Volume 55, Issue 3, p.427-32 (2004)


Adult, Female, Functional Laterality, Humans, Language, Mental Processes, Pattern Recognition, Visual, Reaction Time, Reference Values, Verbal Behavior, Visual Fields


<p>It is commonly accepted that phonology is the exclusive domain of the left hemisphere. However, this pattern of lateralization, which posits a right visual field advantage, has been questioned by several studies. In fact, certain factors such as characteristics of the stimuli and subjects' handedness can modulate the right visual field advantage. Thus, the goal of this study was to compare the hemispheric dynamics of right-handers and left-handers during a divided visual field presentation of words that varied in terms of their phonological transparency. For non-transparent words, the left hemisphere seems more competent in both handedness groups. With regard to transparent words, the right hemisphere of both groups also appears competent. Surprisingly, left-handers achieved optimal processing with a functionally isolated left hemisphere, whereas right-handers needed the participation of both hemispheres. The pattern of performance cannot be fully explained by either the callosal or the direct access model.</p>

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