Why Cyclops could not compete with Ulysses: Monocular vision and mental images

Tomaso Vecchi, Zaira Cattaneo, Maura Monegato, Alfredo Pece, Cesare Cornoldi, Pietro Pietrini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The present research demonstrates that the limitations of congenitally blind people in tasks requiring the processing of mental images are specifically related to the absence of binocular vision and not to the absence of vision per se. We contrasted three different groups of participants: sighted; visually impaired, with reduced binocular vision; monocular, with a normal visual acuity although in one eye only. Visually impaired participants (i.e. blurred vision) show a pattern of performance comparable to that of the sighted. In contrast, monocular participants show a similar pattern of performance to congenitally blind individuals despite being able to see perfectly well. These results shed new light on the relationship between perception and imagery and on the characteristics of sequential and simultaneous processes in the human brain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)723-726
Number of pages4
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - May 2006


  • Blindness
  • Mental representations
  • Spatial memory
  • Visual impairment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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