Face recognition and memory in congenital amusia Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • Congenital amusia, commonly known as tone deafness, is a lifelong impairment of music perception and production. It remains a question of debate whether the impairments in musical domain observed in congenital amusia are paralleled in other non-musical perceptual abilities. Using behavioral measures in two experiments, the current study explored face perception and memory in congenital amusics. Both congenital amusics and matched controls performed a face perception task (Experiment 1) and an old/novel object memory task (for both faces and houses, Experiment 2). The results showed that the congenital amusic group had significantly slower reaction times than that in matched control group when identifying whether two faces presented together were the same or different. For different face-pairs, the deficit was greater for upright faces compared with inverted faces. For object memory task, the congenital amusic group also showed worse memory performance than the control group. 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.

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publication date

  • 2019