Enhanced Visual Processing in Perihand Space: Effects of Handedness


There is a growing body of evidence that visual processing is enhanced in perihand space. Some recent studies also showed that this enhancement is limited to the space around the right hand, at least in right handers. One explanation for these findings is that visual processing is facilitated at locations where action is more likely to occur. To test this notion, we had left and right handers perform a visual discrimination task under four hand-position configurations: Left only, right only, both hands, or no hands near the visual display. Results showed qualitatively different patterns for the two handedness groups. Visual sensitivity (d’) was higher when only the left hand was near the display for left handers, whereas right handers performed better in the right- and both-hands conditions. These findings tend to confirm that visual enhancement is tied to the dominant hand, which is preferentially used for most manual actions.

Back to Table of Contents