The representation of elapsing time may require spatial attention. In certain circumstances this spatial representation develops from left to right. This is suggested by a performance advantage in responding “short” with the left hand and “long” with the right hand (Spatial-Temporal Association between Response Codes, STEARC). The present study tests whether one possible determinant of the directionality of the STEARC effect is cultural. In particular, we investigated whether reading/writing habits can affect STEARC direction by administering a visual time judgment task to Italian participants, who were exposed to a left-to-right reading/writing system, and Israeli participants, who mainly used a right-to-left system. The Italian participants showed a left-to-right STEARC effect, while this effect was not present in the Israeli group. The study demonstrates that cultural habits can influence the way in which spatial attention supports the representation of time, similarly to the pattern found in other non-spatial domains such as numbers.

Cultural modulations of space-time compatibility effects

VALLESI, ANTONINO;SEMENZA, CARLO;
2014

Abstract

The representation of elapsing time may require spatial attention. In certain circumstances this spatial representation develops from left to right. This is suggested by a performance advantage in responding “short” with the left hand and “long” with the right hand (Spatial-Temporal Association between Response Codes, STEARC). The present study tests whether one possible determinant of the directionality of the STEARC effect is cultural. In particular, we investigated whether reading/writing habits can affect STEARC direction by administering a visual time judgment task to Italian participants, who were exposed to a left-to-right reading/writing system, and Israeli participants, who mainly used a right-to-left system. The Italian participants showed a left-to-right STEARC effect, while this effect was not present in the Israeli group. The study demonstrates that cultural habits can influence the way in which spatial attention supports the representation of time, similarly to the pattern found in other non-spatial domains such as numbers.
File in questo prodotto:
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.
Pubblicazioni consigliate

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/2790314
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? 12
  • Scopus 39
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 40
social impact