Wednesday 4 May 2016, 4.00PM to 5.00pm
Speaker(s): Prof. Ida Gobbini
The idea that we are expert face recognizers may be valid only for familiar face perception. Recognition of familiar faces is remarkably efficient, effortless and robust, whereas recognition of unfamiliar faces is surprisingly poor. Automatic activation of knowledge about familiar individuals and the emotional response play crucial roles in familiar face recognition. Data will be presented to show how familiarity affects the earliest stages of face processing to facilitate rapid, even preconscious detection of these highly socially salient stimuli. These data support the hypothesis that representation of personally familiar faces develops in a hierarchical fashion through the engagement of multiple levels in the distributed neural system from early visual processes to higher level of social cognition and emotion.