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Perceptual ExpertiseBridging Brain and Behavior$
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Isabel Gauthier, Michael Tarr, and Daniel Bub

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195309607

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195309607.001.0001

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The Locus of Holistic Processing

The Locus of Holistic Processing

(p.271) 9 The Locus of Holistic Processing
Perceptual Expertise

Olivia S. Cheung

Isabel Gauthier

Oxford University Press

Evidence for holistic processing is observed for faces and nonface objects of expertise using several behavioral paradigms (composite task, whole-part paradigm, inversion paradigm), and holistic processing accompanies important neural signatures of face perception. Although holistic processing is assumed to have a perceptual locus, where faces are represented as unified wholes, the decisional component involved in these tasks is often overlooked—it is possible for parts to be represented independently and yet for decisions about them to not be independent. A possible decisional locus of holistic processing is suggested by studies that compare manipulations at the encoding stage versus the decisional stage, studies showing that holistic processing can be modulated by context, and studies that apply the general recognition framework and related analyses. A decisional interaction between face parts may arise due to the learned expectation that face parts change together.

Keywords:   face processing, holistic processing, composite task, general recognition theory, response bias, inversion effect, whole-part paradigm, decisional, perceptual

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