Urban experience alters lightness perception

Linnell, Karina J; Bremner, Andrew J.; Caparos, S.; Davidoff, Jules B. and De Fockert, J. W.. 2018. Urban experience alters lightness perception. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 44(1), pp. 2-6. ISSN 0096-1523 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

We present the first empirical evidence that experience alters lightness perception. The role of experience in lightness perception was investigated through a cross-cultural comparison of two visual contrast phenomena: simultaneous lightness contrast and White’s illusion. The Himba, a traditional semi-nomadic group known to have a local bias in perception, showed enhanced simultaneous lightness contrast but reduced White’s illusion compared to groups which have a more global perceptual style: Urban-dwelling Himba and Westerners. Thus, experience of the urban environment alters lightness perception and we argue it does this by fostering the tendency to integrate information from across the visual scene.

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7 September 2017Accepted
1 January 2018Published

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Date Deposited:

30 Oct 2017 12:25

Last Modified:

09 May 2022 15:22

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Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.



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