Encyclopedia of Neuroscience

2009 Edition
| Editors: Marc D. Binder, Nobutaka Hirokawa, Uwe Windhorst

Lexical-Gustatory Synesthesia

  • Julia Simner
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-540-29678-2_2766


Word-taste synesthesia


Lexical-gustatory synesthesia is a sub-variant of the familial condition known as  synesthesia, which is characterized by a merging of sensory and/or cognitive functions. In lexical-gustatory synesthesia, words trigger accompanying food sensations, and these are experienced as either veridical perceptions of flavor (e.g., the word jail tastes of bacon in the mouth) or as an overwhelming and automatic cognitive association between the inducing word and the food type (e.g., the word jail evokes the notion of bacon).


Quantitative Description

Synesthesia is a multi-variant condition in which everyday activities (e.g., reading, listening to music) give rise to extraordinary experiences (e.g., colors, tastes). Each variant is characterized by the pairing of a particular type of synesthetic “inducer” (i.e., triggering stimulus) with a particular type of experience (or synesthetic “concurrent”) and in the lexical-gustatory variant...

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Berlin Heidelberg 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Julia Simner
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language SciencesUniversity of EdinburghEdinburghUK