Mental Imagery

Mental imagery is the cognitive process underling image generation. An image is generated when perceptual information is recalled from long-term memory and is loaded on working memory system, usually resulting as an introspective experience of our perception. This internal representation can be also depicted and manipulated, with fundamental implications for cognitive processes such as learning, remembering, problem solving, motion, language and perception. Different approaches have been used through years to study mental imagery (self-report questionnaires, neuropsychology, brain mapping techniques, objective behavioural measures) Although research paid the most of attention to visual imagery modality, over the past few years mental imagery has been investigated in different sensory modalities as well.

Relevant issues investigated by our laboratory are:

  • neural mechanisms involved during image generation in different sensory modalities;
  • properties of olfactory and gustatory imagery systems;
  • the vividness of imagery.

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