Carnegie Mellon University
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Can Culture Influence the Strength of Visual Imagery?

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posted on 2023-09-18, 15:58 authored by Masooma ZehraMasooma Zehra

 Visual imagery strength was explored using the Vividness of Visual Imagery Questionnaire (VVIQ) and compared to imagery abilities in all sensory modalities (i.e. taste, smell) using the Plymouth Sensory Imagery Questionnaire (Psi-Q) in a novel, multi-national sample from Qatar (N=636). The prevalence of aphantasia, or lack of visual imagery, (5.0 %) and hyperphantasia, or highly vivid imagery, (12.1%) was similar to previous studies. Cultural differences were found in the strength of imagery reported. In the VVIQ, MENA nationalities indicated significantly lower visual imagery than South East Asian (p<.05) and western participants (p<.01). In the Psi-Q, South East Asian participants reported significantly stronger imagery than MENA and Arab nationals across for all senses (p’s<.05-.001). Visual imagery also correlated with imagery in all sensory modalities (range: r=.71 to r=.51, all p’s<.01), indicating that visual imagery may tap into and influence other sensory experiences.




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