The effects of mothers’ past infant-holding preferences on their adult children’s face processing lateralization
KeywordsLearning and Plasticity
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AbstractFace processing development is negatively affected when infants have not been exposed to faces for some time because of congenital cataract blocking all vision (Le Grand, Mondloch, Maurer, & Brent, 2001). It is not clear, however, whether more subtle differences in face exposure may also have an influence. The present study looked at the effect of the mother's preferred side of holding an infant, on her adult child's face processing lateralisation. Adults with a mother who had a left-arm preference for holding infants were compared with adults with a mother who had a right-arm holding preference. All participants were right-handed and had been exclusively bottle-fed during infancy. The participants were presented with two chimeric faces tests, one involving emotion and the other one gender. The left-arm held individuals showed a normal left-bias on the chimeric face tests, whereas the right-arm held individuals a significantly decreased left-bias. The results might suggest that reduced exposure to high quality emotional information on faces in infancy results in diminished right-hemisphere lateralisation for face processing.
TypeArticle / Letter to editor