The Beauty Of Neural Crosstalk: An Unusual Cooperation Of The Senses
Cretien van Campen explores synesthesia from both artistic and scientific perspectives, looking at accounts of individual experiences, examples of synesthesia in visual art, music, and literature, and recent neurological research.
Van Campen reports that some studies define synesthesia as a brain impairment, a short circuit between two different areas. But synesthetes cannot imagine perceiving in any other way; many claim that synesthesia helps them in daily life. Van Campen investigates just what the function of synesthesia might be and what it might tell us about our own sensory perceptions. He examines the experiences of individual synesthetes—from Patrick, who sees music as images and finds the most beautiful ones spring from the music of Prince, to the schoolgirl Sylvia, who is surprised to learn that not everyone sees the alphabet in colors as she does.
Prince, huh? Well, as a fellow sound to color synesthete, I guess I will have to take a look at his music (said here a little more literally than usual).
The book is described as a delightfully written interplay of social sciences, neuroscience and the case study of synesthetes. A copy will be acquired, devoured, and reported on by me.
Also don’t miss a MIT press podcast interview with the author.