Imagery pp 35-53 | Cite as

Imagery, Raw and Cooked: A Hemispheric Recipe

  • Paul Bakan


I would like today to consider the matter of imagery in the light of functional hemispheric asymmetry of the brain. It is becoming very clear that the notion of cerebral hemispheric asymmetry is becoming a part of the basic belief system of modern psychological thought. In 1864, Broca showed that the faculty of articulate language is localized in the left hemisphere of the brain. With the left hemisphere controlling speech, and the use of the right hand, two of man’s most distinguishing features, it is no surprise that the left hemisphere became known as the dominant hemisphere, and the right one, the minor hemisphere. But only a year after Broca’s discovery, the English neurologist, J. Hughlings Jackson, began to develop what I have called the dual dominance model (Bakan, 1971). This model allows that just as the left hemisphere is dominant for speech, so may the right hemisphere be dominant for other functions. Jackson suggested, in fact, that perception may be localized in the right hemisphere. His program was formulated specifically in 1874 when he wrote:

That the nervous system is double physically is evident enough.... I wish to show that it is double in function also, and further in what way it is double in function ... the posterior lobe on the right side ... is the chief seat of the revival of images.... The patient (with a right posterior lesion) would have difficulty in recognizing things; he would have difficulty in relating what had occurred, not from a lack of words, but from a prior inability to revive images of persons, objects, and places of which the words are the symbols. (Jackson, 1958)


Left Hemisphere Visual Imagery Left Mover Dream Recall Left Hemisphere Lesion 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paul Bakan
    • 1
  1. 1.Simon Fraser UniversityBurnabyCanada

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