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Mechanisms of Selective Attention in Mammals

  • Giacomo Rizzolatti
Part of the NATO Advanced Science Institutes Series book series (NSSA, volume 56)

Abstract

Attention is a term which derives from the common experience that physically identical stimuli may be perceived at different moments with different degrees of subjective clearness. The change in clarity may occur globally, so that the perception of the whole environment improves, or it may be limited to part of the perceptual environment. In the latter case some stimuli (or a single stimulus) assume particular relevance with respect to the others. This subjective distinction corresponds to the subdivision of attentional phenomena into two broad classes: (1) intensive phenomena, such as arousal, alertness, or attentiveness, and (2) selective phenomena (see Berlyne, 1960, 1970). My aim in this article is that of reviewing neurophysiological data, essentially derived from single neuron studies, which appear to be related to the selective phenomena. For limitation of space, the intensive aspect of attention will be not dealt with.

Keywords

Receptive Field Selective Attention Superior Colliculus Enhancement Effect Discharge Area 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • Giacomo Rizzolatti
    • 1
  1. 1.Istituto di Fisiologia UmanaUniversità di ParmaParmaItaly

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