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Involuntary physical experience of a cross-modal association

  1. May 1, 2004 #1
    ABSTRACT: Synesthesia (Greek, syn = together + aisthesis = perception) is the involuntary physical experience of a cross-modal association. That is, the stimulation of one sensory modality reliably causes a perception in one or more different senses.

    1. Introduction
    2. General Features
    3. History Of Synesthesia
    4. Clinical Diagnosis
    5. Lack Of Obvious Agreement
    6. Neural Basis
    7. Form Constants
    8. The Implications Of Synesthesia Regarding The Primacy Of Emotion
    9. The Rejection Of Direct Experience
    10. Future Issues For Research


    for me,
    A is red
    C is yellow
    J is green
    L is purple/lilac
    S is pink
    G is rust
    T is orange
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 20, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. May 13, 2004 #2


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    When did you first realise that 'A is red' for you, but not everyone (anyone?) else?

    Is it only letters+colours for you?
  4. Mar 6, 2005 #3
    I've asked other people if they associate colors for letters and what those would be. I just figured everyone would have different colors, not sure at what age, but I remember thinking about it as a child.

    Under general features:2.8 Not only do most synesthetes contend that their memories are excellent, but cite their parallel sensations as the cause, saying for example, "I know it's 2 because it's white." Conversation, prose passages, movie dialogue, and verbal instructions are typical subjects of detailed recall. The spatial location of objects is also strikingly remembered, such as the precise location of kitchen utensils, furniture arrangements and floor plans, books on shelves, or text blocks in a specific book. Perhaps related to this observation is a tendency to prefer order, neatness, symmetry, and balance. Work cannot commence until the desk is arranged just so, or everything in the kitchen is put away in its proper place. Synesthetes perform in the superior range of the Wechsler Memory Scale.

    This and especially the last part about neatness is true for me.
  5. Jan 7, 2007 #4


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    Last edited by a moderator: May 2, 2017
  6. Jan 7, 2007 #5


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    Funny, for me it's numbers. I associate the number 4 (and squares) with the color blue. The number 3 (and equilateral triangles) are red, etc. The color associations are not really strong, but even as a young child, I associated numbers with regular shapes in plane geometry (eventually, my favorite course in HS).
  7. Jan 8, 2007 #6
    I smell shapes, from grape squares and lemon triangles, to patchouli swirls. It wasen't untill zoob started a thread on this subject that I really had to {admit} look closely at myself.
  8. Jan 8, 2007 #7
    Here is another thread on this topic with more case studies presented:
    https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=77376&highlight=synesthesiaI find it interesting that looking at the limited information presented, there is no pattern that different people associate colors, shapes, numbers the same way. Has anyone conducted research on comparative experiences of those with synesthesia ?
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