Background: A large body of research has shown brain asymmetries in spatial attention. Specifically, there is an attention-processing advantage for the left visual field in healthy, right-handed subjects, known as “pseudoneglect.” Several studies have revealed that emotions modulate this basic spatial phenomenon, but the direction of the effect is still unclear. Here we systematically review empirical evidence on the behavioral effects of emotion on pseudoneglect. Methods: We searched through Pubmed, Scopus, PsycINFO, and PsychArticles. Original peer-reviewed articles published until February 2021 were included if they (1) were written in English; (2) were conducted on adults; (3) included at least one task to measure pseudoneglect, and (4) included at least one task with emotional stimuli or employed a measure of emotional state/trait, as they relate to pseudoneglect. Results: Fifteen studies were included, and 784 healthy participants took part in all studies reviewed. Discussion: The results show some evidence of emotion modulation of pseudoneglect, but evidence on the direction of the effect is mixed. We discuss the role of methodological factors that could account for the available findings and the implications for emotion asymmetry hypotheses such as the right-hemisphere hypothesis, the valence-specific hypothesis, as well as neural and arousal frameworks of attention–emotion interactions.
- Attention bias
- Perceptual asymmetries
- Visual neglect
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Computer Science (miscellaneous)
- Chemistry (miscellaneous)
- Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)