Vigilance and Split-Brain Research
In the attempt to find systems of the brain responsible for vigilance performance, it is shown in studies of the capacity of the normal person that the watchkeeping functions at the two sides of the brain differ in certain important respects. The view is expressed that there are two different hemisphere vigilance systems of the brain. This has important implications for theories of vigilance because theory which applies to one may not apply to the other. Studies of split-brain man show differences between the performance of the two hemispheres and in addition reveal gross failures of vigilance performance associated with the total-split condition but not with partial section preserving the splenium. The defect can be characterized as “holes of consciousness,” appearing at each side of the brain. The view is expressed that the system which itself unifies the two hemispheres acts as part of the system for visual consciousness which spans the brain and involves the splenium of the corpus callosum.
KeywordsCorpus Callosum Left Hemisphere Brain Damage Anterior Commissure Vigilance Task
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