Showing posts from August, 2020

Emotion processing in congenital amusia: the deficits do not generalize to written emotion words

There is something to be said for academic article titles that give you the bottom line. In this case, the bottom line is that, as a congenital amusiac, I am probably better able to convey my emotions in written words than a face-to-face conversation. (This makes a lot of sense to me when I think of all those poems I wrote to girls when I was a teenager.) Here's what the abstract says: "Results showed that participants with amusia preformed significantly less accurately than controls in emotion prosody recognition; in contrast, the two groups showed no significant difference in accuracy rates in both written word tasks (emotion recognition and valence judgment)."  So, while my amusia turned many music lessons at school into a form of torture, I was still able to win the school prize in English (twice). Also, and this is true, I once aced a test in Music class because it was an essay question that involved describing orchestral sounds. The abstract continues: "The res

Altered functional connectivity during speech perception in congenital amusia

Interesting! Congenital amusia equates to "a lifelong history of unreliable pitch processing" and this paper suggests that people with this condition, which includes me, "downweight pitch cues during speech perception and instead rely on other dimensions such as duration." The results indicate that: "the reliability of perceptual dimensions is linked with functional connectivity between frontal and perceptual regions, and suggest a compensatory mechanism." Reading the paper is a great way to sample current thinking on how humans perceive the many different elements of person-to-person communication. Pre-publication manuscript of the paper is online here .

Amusia and facial recognition: a fascinating [mis]connection?

My fellow amusiacs! Do you have problems recognizing people? There could be an explanation for that. A recent study "explored face perception and memory in congenital amusics." A look what they found: "The results of the present study suggest that the impairment attributed to congenital amusia is not only limited to music, but also extends to visual perception and visual memory domain." You can read the article here .