Why Cyclops could not compete with Ulysses: monocular vision and mental images

Neuroreport. 2006 May 15;17(7):723-6. doi: 10.1097/01.wnr.0000215773.46108.ae.


The present research demonstrates that the limitations of congenitally blind people in tasks requiring the processing of mental images are specifically related to the absence of binocular vision and not to the absence of vision per se. We contrasted three different groups of participants: sighted; visually impaired, with reduced binocular vision; monocular, with a normal visual acuity although in one eye only. Visually impaired participants (i.e. blurred vision) show a pattern of performance comparable to that of the sighted. In contrast, monocular participants show a similar pattern of performance to congenitally blind individuals despite being able to see perfectly well. These results shed new light on the relationship between perception and imagery and on the characteristics of sequential and simultaneous processes in the human brain.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Female
  • Form Perception / physiology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Processes / physiology*
  • Vision Disorders / genetics
  • Vision Disorders / physiopathology*
  • Vision, Binocular
  • Vision, Monocular / physiology*
  • Visual Acuity / physiology