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Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Society

One Brain—Two Minds? The behavioral consequences of sectioning the cerebral commissures
raise fascinating questions about the physical basis of conscious behavior
Author(s): Michael S. Gazzaniga
Source: American Scientist, Vol. 60, No. 3 (May-June 1972), pp. 311-317
Published by: Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Society
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/27843131 .
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Michael S. Gazzaniga One Brain?Two Minds?

The behavioral consequences of sectioning the cerebral


commissures raisefascinating questions about thephysical basis
of conscious behavior

The idea of consciousness stands out nomenon is as startling and basically


alone as man's most
important, most
mysterious today as when R. E.
puzzling, and most abused problem. Myers and R. W. Sperry first dis
Most other human ideas pale in covered it in animals in the early
complexity next to this one and to the fifties. As experimental animal evi
long series of associated questions
sur dence for the double-brain phenome
rounding the nature of brain and non developed and expanded to in
mind. Indeed, upon studying the clude the monkey and the chimpan
problem and reading the literature, zee, the question became: Could a
one cannot help but conclude that the human being be considered to have
only subjects of greater mystery are the double consciousness as a result of
articles written about or around the midline section of the cerebral com
problem of consciousness. missures? Could a pass of the surgeon's
knife produce two separate and dis
It is difficult ifnot impossible with our tinct coexisting mental entities both
present knowledge to define explicitly within one head?each operating out
what ismeant by conscious experience. side the realm of awareness of the
What I mean by the term can be il other?
lustrated by considering what you the
reader presently feels. It is the dimen Corpus callosum In recent experiments on both animals
sion which makes you more like a dog Anterior commissure and man, additional supportive evi
than a computer. Since this ishardly a dence has accumulated for the double
1. Both a frontal and a posterior
sophisticated or formal notion, we talk Figure
are made in the split-brain
mind view. Studies examining the
opening opera
about the functions of consciousness in tion. The callosum and anterior neural substrates involved in setting
corpus
order to make the subject of con commissure are sectioned in one operation. response probabilities, as well as
sciousness scientifically manageable. preliminary work examining cortical
Thus eating, drinking, reading, loving hypothalamic interactions, all argue
are all analyzed in their separate parts. for the double mind view. In addition,
considering the problems of the bi our ongoing work on teaching left
By studying these aspects of conscious sected brain in both animal and man.
activity we hope to gain some under brain-damaged patients an artificial
standing of thewhole idea of conscious language gives support to the earlier
Over the ten years we have
past
ness. In real terms, of course, how such view of the natural mental capabilities
collected evidence that, following mid
processes relate to brain mechanisms of the right-half brain.
line section of the cerebrum, common
remains unknown. Yet it is these
normal conscious unity is disrupted,
kinds of questions that arise when
leaving the split-brain patient with General review
two minds (at least)?mind left and
mind right (5, 25). They coexist as two Clearly, in man the issue of "double
Michael S. Gazzaniga, Professor of Psychology at mind" is more dramatic than in the
New York University, did both his graduate and completely conscious entities, in the
same manner as twins are animals. In most of the following we
postgraduate work in psychobiology at California conjoined
Institute of Technology. He continued in post two completely separate persons. This will be talking about double mind as it
graduate study at the University of Pisa and then view has been contested by a variety of exists in split-brain patients. All of a
went to the University
group of several patients operated on
Santa
people (2, 19). In what follows we will
of California,
Barbara, where he became Associate Professor
first review the basic findings of the by Dr. P. J. Vogel and Dr. J. E.
and Chairman of the Psychology Department. He
has written The Bisected Brain and more than split-brain phenomenon and then Bogen, at the California College of
forty articles and chapters in the field of psy report on several recent advances that Medicine (/), were epileptics, and the
chobiology. The research reported here has been
give further support to our view that aim of the surgery was to prevent the
largely supported by grant MH1788-3 from the
National Institute of Mental Health. Address:
twominds can exist in one head. interhemispheric spread of seizures.
To this end, the great cerebral com
Department of Psychology, New York University,
New York, NY ?0003. In many ways, the split-brain phe missure, the corpus callosum, which

1972 May-June 311

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spans the midline of the brain and left can do, with admitted limitations MacKay (79). He raises a crucial and
interconnects the two half brains, was in the degree of its competence. fascinating question. All organisms
sectioned in one operation (Fig. 1). In have, of course, normative systems.

addition, a second, smaller commis Since this original series of studies de Clearly, in split-brain man, at the
sure, the anterior commissure, was limiting the syndrome of cerebral com physical level, basic humoral and
also cut. missurotomy, there have been con electrotonic brainstem influences are
tinuing efforts to extend and further unified and intact. In addition, Mac
Therapeutically the operation has define the behavioral consequences of Kay wonders whether basic psycho
been largely successful. Behaviorally, the surgery. Some of thework empha logical systems such as our response
the patients for themost part appear sizes the role of brainstem processes priority-determining mechanism exist
entirely normal, and the untrained and the amount of information that in duplicate in these patients. This is
observer would be unable to ascertain can be exchanged at these levels (27). the system that sets the goals, priorities,
that brain surgery had ever been per Other studies caution against this and rank order of objectives of an
formed. It is only under special testing view and point out how many of these organism. Put differently, it assigns
conditions that the peculiar phenom assertions have other explanations values or response probabilities?one
ena reveal themselves (5). The left (8, 9). Still others have analyzed the of themost important features of brain
hemisphere, because of its intact way such separated hemispheres ap activity. Without thismechanism the
language and speech system, can fully proach and solve perceptual tasks of world would seem flat and any activity
communicate its thoughts and ideas; all kinds (26). These latter studies would be like any other. MacKay
it seems to be normal and conscious. claim, for example, that the right maintains that this system, which he
It is the right hemisphere's status that hemisphere remembers faces in terms calls the "metaorganizing system," is a
is both crucial and difficult to ascer of a "gestalt"?of the actual pictorial leading and basic feature of brain
tain. It does not have a speech system and configuratory cues?while the left function and that it is rarely if ever in
and thus cannot tell about its experi hemisphere is more analytical and conflict. As a result, he maintains, it
ences through speech. We have cir tends to remember by analyzing falls to us to demonstrate whether or
cumvented this problem by using specific features of a face. The idea not each half brain has its own prior
nonverbal response procedures (Fig. here is that mind left is poet-like and ity-determining system that can work
2). As a result we have been able to mind right is the painter in us. independently of the other.
define many right-hemisphere func
tions that can go on independently and The suggestion that these kinds of ob There are seemingly a lot of things
largely outside the awareness of the servation support the idea of double going in favor ofMacKay's criticism.
left hemisphere. It can read, learn, consciousness (i.e. a separate set of Hillyard and I (P, 72), for example,
remember, emote, and act all by mental controls for each hemisphere) have recently shown that the CNV
itself. It can do almost anything the has been challenged by Donald M. brain wave (i.e. the contingent nega

Figure 2. Using an apparatus especially de event, because the activity was carried out
signed for testing split-brain patients, visual by the disconnected right hemisphere, which
stimuli can be presented to one or the other is now disconnected from the left speech
which is the half brain talking /
hemisphere exclusively. Tactual testing is also hemisphere,
possible by allowing exploration of objects to the experimenter.
vTZ^r^-^^^^^
presented out of view to either hand. In
testing right-hemispheric function, pictures
or words are quick-flashed to the left visual
field. The subjects invariably say they saw
or will make a guess. Yet the left
nothing
hand, which sends its touch information
to the right hemisphere, will be able to
retrieve the object described. After the task
is correctly completed the subject will still
deny knowledge of the specific aspects of the

s; x

Il^^^jjli

312 American Scientist, Volume 60

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Right hand Left hand tion cues as a less probable contingent
(l)j? respond response is, you might say, a cognitive
Light Tone Light Tone detail. It does not put the normative
system in conflict for the peanut
always remains rewarding.

Right hemisphere
Again, what we are asking is themore
basic question : can themore probable
Left hemisphere response, namely eating the peanut,
have a value X for one hemisphere and
a value Y for the other? This question
was recently analyzed by J. D. John
(0) no
response son and myself, using split-brain
Light monkeys (17). During the course of
studying the role of reward in learning
Righthemisphere it became apparent that the positive
1
Left
^^^^ /jw ^jf^^- stimulus of a visual discrimination,
hemisphere which may become a rewarding event
in and of itself in one brain, simul
1 sec taneously elicited neutral responses in
the other half brain.
=
Figure 3. Computer-averaged CNV's (N though only one knows what the triggering
12) recorded simultaneously from the scalp stimulus was. Nonpolarizing electrodes were Consider the following. We have
over the right and left hemispheres when right placed 5 cm to the right and left of the mid shown that when one naive hemi
or left hand was used and left visual field line, along the interaural line. Trials con
observes the errorless per
was the visual artifacts were ex sphere
right hemisphere presented taining eye-movement on a
formance of the other pattern
discrimination task. Clearly, both hemi cluded from these averages. DC amplifica
spheres develop the expectancy wave even tion was used ; calibrations, 20 uV. discrimination, it too learns (16). In
other words, a half brain need not
errors to learn a visual
experience
discrimination.
tive variation brain wave that appears that trigger it, but it cannot be index
over the parietal lobe region prior to a ing a psychological process like atten established that trial and
Having
specific motor response) is bilaterally tion or expectancy because the non error is not a necessary condition for

symmetrical, even though only one half expectant hemisphere also has the learning, we next tried to analyze the
brain sees the triggering stimulus CNV. As a result, what initially role of reward. In brief, we taught one
(Fig. 3). In this test, recordings were looked like a strike for hemisphere half brain a new problem and then
made on each side of the skull while a unity
now appears to be otherwise. advanced the reward schedule to fixed
visual discrimination was flashed to ratio 2 (RF-2). Thus, on every other
only one hemisphere. The subject was Still the MacKay question is open. trial the animal was rewarded (Fig.
trained to make a manual response to a
Experimentally, the question be 4). On the nonrewarded trials, both
tone which followed the numeral comes: Can one environmental situa the trained half brain and the naive
"one" but did not follow a "zero." tion precipitate two different be half brain were allowed to view the
Thus, when the "one" appeared the havioral responses, each having
a discrimination. On the rewarded trials,
expectancy brain wave develops but different value for each half brain? In only the trained hemisphere saw the
does not appear ifa "zero" is flashed. other words, could the same rewarding problem; the naive half brain saw
When the information was
presented event elicit a different probability of nothing. Could the naive half brain
in the left visual field, which projects responding in each separate hemi learn if it only observed correct per
to the right hemisphere, the subject sphere? formance and also never
experienced
a

responded appropriately. When sub reward? We supposed that if the


sequently asked what the stimuli were, There is a difference between what I normative system (which assigns values
the subjects said they didn't know? am asking and what has already been or response probabilities to all events)
that's the lefthemisphere talking. Yet shown literally hundreds of times in was common to both hemispheres, the
the physiological recordings showed split-brain cats, monkeys, and humans.
monkey would calmly and easily learn
that the normal expectancy wave A variety of studies have shown that the discriminative cues even though
developed in each hemisphere. the split-brain organism can learn there was no
primary
reward present.
conflicting visual discriminations. For The secondary
or
quasi-reward
value
In the past such waves were thought to example, the right hemisphere is of the stimulus ought to register
have a 1-to-l correspondence to basic trained to learn that the+ of a + vs. 0 instantly on the naive side.
psychological processes. While this discrimination will be rewarded in
may still be true, the relation becomes one half brain and the 0 of the What happened was most surprising to
more remote. The separated hemi + vs. 0 in the other half brain. us. The naive hemisphere not only did
spheres are linked in these parameters In this experiment the peanut or not learn the discrimination, but on
but remarkably different in both their reward value is kept constant: the the nonrewarded trials it actively
subjective and objective reports. The animal has the same probability of interfered with the ongoing normal
CNV seems to have psychological responding to it in each half brain. discriminative activity of the trained
specificity with respect to the events Learning opposing visual discrimina half brain. In other words, the naive

1972 May-June 313

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half brain was not content to observe received little support from huge
the performance of the trained side on amounts of clinical data, it nonethe
these trials as it had before when less seemed viable as a result of our
rewards were present. It waived any studies on the bisected brain.
response tendency that might have
transferred and sought its own solution Recently, working at New York
to the problem. As a result, it actively Institute of Rehabilitative Medicine,
intruded and interferedwith behavior. Andrea Velletri, David Premack, and
I were able to teach an 84-year-old
Clearly, any quasi-reward value of the global aphasie some basic language
discrimination per se that may have operations (77). This woman had had
been assigned to the stimulus by the a major stroke involving the left
trained half brain did not transfer,and lip} speech and language center that ren
was in no way communicated, to the dered her hemiparalytic and unable to
naive half brain. If it had, the naive understand or
produce natural lan
half brain would have learned easily guage. Nonetheless, using the language
and would not have been frustrated. Il \ scheme developed by Premack (22) for
Indeed, when looking at the actual chimpanzees,
we were able to train her

behavior, it was as if two different Figure 4. Split-brain monkeys observe a to arrange correctly cut-out paper
value systems were competing for visual discrimination through a specially
symbols that were referrent to lan
control over one mechanism. designed training apparatus which allows
response guage operations.
for the separate or combined projection of
visual information to each eye. Here a naive
These animal studies are in agreement is free to observe the errorless Contrary to existing views, which in
hemisphere
with recent testing of the split-brain performance of a trained hemisphere. the main hold that the left hemi
patients on the effects of reward ('Fig. sphere's language center is specialized
5). We showed that when a reward? for the processing of symbolic informa
say, the appearance of the word hypothalamic lesion (74). To date we tion, the subject learned that a variety
"right" for correct responses and have seen marked differences between of paper symbols were each referrent to
"wrong" for incorrect responses?was the hemispheres in food intake be a particular linguistic operation. For
flashed to one half brain and a visual havior and response patterns as the two similar objects
example, when
discrimination was
presented exclu result of the lesions. In other split were placed side by side, the subject
sively to the other, no learning oc brain animals, differences were dis could place between them a symbol
curred in over thirty trials (75). In covered that reflected unilateral dam "same." When the objects
meaning
callosum-intact people, the informa
age to the hypothalamus as a result of were different, another symbol, repre
tion is immediately synthesized and the surgery.What is apparent is that be ap
senting "different," would
two completely propriately placed. The proper use of
occurs in one or two trials. different response
learning

probability systems can coexist in the the "same" and "different" symbols
Johnson went on to show, however,
that if the split-brain patient was was not restricted to the items used in
split organism for something so basic as
for making an error,
reprimanded food. That is, one hemisphere will training but transferred freely to non
quick learning occurred. Here, it is initiate more activity for food than training items. A question symbol was
hypothesized, the reward, or feed will the other. This must mean that the introduced in the same-different con
back, no
longer remained cortical. cortical system, which is the only struction and given the meaning of
When the "wrong" light appeared the neural system disconnected in split element" ; the subject showed
"missing
patient would now make an exclama brain surgery, ismuch more involved her grasp of the symbol by successfully
tion, sigh, and gesture disgust. On the in the hypothalamic process than we substituting for it whatever element
next trials, learning occurred. Thus had ever thought. was missing, predicate as well as
when the reward took on more general
object. In addition, the subject could
affective responses the cuing became so form the negative in the injunctive
massive that the opposite half brain Language training mode. We have extended these obser
could figure out which stimulus was The earlier claim of the existence of vations by training six more global
producing the general negative reac double consciousness following tran
aphasies. Some have been brought to
tion and which was not. Taken section of the cerebral commissures has the level of generating simple sen
together then, it can be said that received support from other studies. tences using thesemethods.
higher-order reward information can At the time, we largely based the idea
remain isolated and separate in the on the extensive evidence we had While, of course, one cannot com

split brain. Each hemisphere ap collected on the cognitive capacity of pletely rule out the possibility that
parently is free to assign different or the disconnected right hemisphere in undamaged parts of the left hemi
even conflicting response probabilities man. This mute, passive cognitive
sphere are active in carrying out these
to the same stimulus. system was shown to be capable of a tasks, itwould seem fair to say that a
number of mental operations, as out more likely explanation is that the
In a more direct physiological lined above. One inference from
ap remaining right hemisphere is doing
proach to these same general ques thiswork was that if the left,dominant the work. In other words, the original
tions, Alan Gibson and I have been hemisphere should ever be damaged in split-brain data we reported on hu
analyzing the eating behavior con a normal adult, the right side with mans that spelled out the boundary
trolled by each hemisphere in split proper training ought to be able to condition ofmental competence on the
brain monkeys, following unilateral come to its aid. While this idea has right side give support to the notion

314 American Scientist, Volume 60

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that the right hemisphere, separated or how the brain deals with complex the speech center. Next, the amytal
not from the left hemisphere, can do logical operations in the raw. was administered and the left hemi
many complicated and sophisticated sphere went out. At this time,when the
cognitive operations. There is other additional support for patient is totally unable to use or
the view that the right hemisphere has understand language, another object
These remarkable in severely
abilities tremendous cognitive powers. We have was placed in the lefthand. Since the
brain-damaged global aphasies dem seen the intact brain at work perform right hemisphere is exclusively awake,
onstrate that the languageless human ing perceptual tasks outside and in it is free to remember the test object.
being still possesses a conceptual dependent of the normal language The subject held it for awhile, and
system that can handle the logical tasks system. In some exploratory and then it was removed. Shortly there
outlined in the foregoing. The data preliminary tests (7) carried out at after, the effects of the drug wore off
suggest, moreover, that there exists in Cornell Medical School, unilateral and the left hemisphere woke up. An
the brain a conceptual system that is amytal testing was done on the left exchange followed that went some

separate and independent from the hemisphere of two nonaphasic brain thing like this:
natural language system. Indeed, it damaged patients subsequent to a
could be that this primitive conceptual required angiogram. Prior to injection "How do you feel?"
system may be the primordial cogni of the anesthetic, which has the effect "Fine," said the patient.

tive system of primates, from which of putting one half brain briefly asleep, "What did I put in your hand?"
may have come the language abilities an object was placed in the subject's "I don't know," said the patient.
of man. Approaching the problem of lefthand, out of his view. When asked "Are you sure?"

cognition in this light suggests the what itwas, the subject responded cor "Yes," said the patient.

theoretical importance of coming to a rectly by saying "spoon." This showed


better understanding of the brain that the left hand-right hemisphere Then a series of objects were shown to
somes the tic projection was the subject. "Which one was it?" The
damaged human. With the confound system
mecha as well as the hemi left hand immediately pointed to the
ing and interwoven language working right
sphere-left hemisphere callosal link to
nisms to rest, we can to see correct object.
put begin

It is still too early to report all the


necessary qualifications on this experi
ment. Other patients, for example, are
unable to remember anything at all.
Yet, the firstresult suggests that, when
the natural language and speech
system is not functioning, perceptually
+
W WRONG stored information encoded at that
time is not subsequently available to
the language system upon its return to
normal operation. In a way it is like
0 the common experience of being un
able to remember events earlier than
the age of two or three. It is possible
that the brain can remember critical
events, which may later play a role in
the control of behavior, but because
the remembered events occurred prior
to the clear establishment of the lan
guage system they cannot be subse
quently recalled through this system.
,
.I
Yet the brain is forever confounding
its students by continually offering up
From some of our recent
paradoxes.
tests itwould seem that the functional
are
capacities of the right hemisphere
K present to a different extent when it is
tested in the presence of the lefthemi
it versus
sphere but disconnected from
when it is tested in the presence of a
damaged lefthemisphere. Many of the
'74 positive functions attributed
to the
come from our
right hemisphere
studies on split-brain patients. As I
Figure 5. Split-brain subjects are unable to sphere while only the left receives reward in have said, simple noun-object dis
describe from the left hemisphere formation. Normals learn the problem
verbally criminations were easily carried out.
visual information presented to the right quickly, but a split remains at chance level
Here a dis after 30 trials.
If we blindfold a subject and tell him
hemisphere (left of fixation).
crimination is presented to the right hemi to find an object with his left hand,

1972 May-June 315

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correct performance is invariably seen.
incoming stimuli that were originally Using a simple visual pattern task that
Here both hemispheres hear the projected to the left hemisphere, as required subjects to judge which two
question while only the right receives opposed to information originally zig-zag figures were oriented in the
the opportunity for answer by stereog projected to the right half brain. same direction, we found that, with a
nostic information from the lefthand. verbal response, the discrimination
In one of our first studies, we found could be performed much more quickly
When this test is run on a subject with that when a simple dot was flashed to when presented first to the right
a minimally damaged lefthemisphere the left hemisphere, re
subjects hemisphere. When first presented to
no such ability is found (10). We sponded approximately 30 msec faster the left hemisphere, the task takes
recently examined a
63-year-old
man
using speech than when itwas flashed approximately 14 msec longer to per
with a crisp and nearly pure auditory to the right hemisphere (4). The form. The interpretation is that in
agnosia. He has no evidence of bi response was to say "yes" when the dot formation needing spatial analysis
lateral disease. He essentially speaks was present and "no" when it was which is presented to the left hemi
reads and writes absent. When a trial consisted of a
normally, normally, sphere is first relayed over to the right
normally, yet he cannot understand a simple flash, the "no" response took for decoding and then sent back to the
single spoken word and was unable to approximately 40 msec more than leftfor the verbal response.
perform the auditory tactile test when the lefthemisphere was respond
described for the subjects with split ing to a dot. This was explained by the There have been a number of addi
brains! The real differences in func fact that the lefthalf brain had towait tional observations reported which
tional expression from the right hemi for a signal from the right as to seem to bear out these early general
sphere as seen in this case suggest that whether a stimulus had appeared or findings (3, 78, 20, 27, 23). A variety of
damage to the lefthemisphere plays an not. At that time we also snowed that different testshave been used, and not
important role in limiting or inhibiting therewas no reliable difference in this too surprisingly there have been
the upper capabilities of the right task when a manual response was different observations on the inter
hemisphere. required. hemispheric transfer latency. For the
most part the tests break down into
Brain code and the Along with the dot experiment, we two main categories: those that deal
were examining the extent to which with the callosal transmission and
corpus callosum each hemisphere in normal man is timing properties and those that are
It is difficult at this point not to capable of controlling language pro primarily concerned with the different
mention a major aspiration coming Here we used the Posner
cessing (6). cognitive properties of each hemi
from this work. Those of us in brain and Mitchell "name identity versus sphere per se and how they relate to
research assume that there is a corol physical identity" tasks and demon information processing models.

lary physical code to our personal strated that tasks requiring verbal
psychological experience. It has not processing were done more quickly In a sense, of course, these kinds of
been at all clear how and where one when the testmaterial was first pre early studies simply demonstrate that
would approach this problem in the sented to the left half brain. In this reaction time techniques are sensitive
brain, but it now seems that the experiment there were two conditions. enough to be used to trace information
corpus callosum might be a good start In the firstpart subjects were required flow in the brain. It remains for these
ing point. We know beyond a shadow to respond manually only to physically techniques to be used to discover
of a doubt that it is thisbrain structure identical stimuli. Thus AA or aa would properties of the callosum itself. To
which relates the con response whereas AB, Ab, or this end we have been carry
psychological, require recently
scious experiences of one hemisphere
ab would not. The results showed that ing out a series of experiments that
to the other. Therefore, ifwe could there was no difference in response require the interhemisphere matching
succeed in gaining insight into the rate as a function of left or right visual of visual information (7). Using this
nature of the callosal transfer mecha field presentation. In other words, procedure we quickly discovered that
nism, it is possible that we would also either hemisphere could perform this interhemisphere matches using diffi
find some answers to the more
general
task rather easily. cult- to-see visual stimuli (subjects in
question of how the brain encodes and dicate whether twowords are the same
transmits psychological data. In the second condition, however, the or different) are far less accurate when
subject was instructed to respond to one word is flashed to one hemisphere
It is in this context that we first name identity only?i.e. whether the and the other to the opposite than
examined interhemispheric exchange two adjacent letters were of the same when both are flashed to the same
of information in normals. Obviously, hemisphere. If the stimuli are bright,
class, such as Aa. Here there was a
in order to begin to understand the difference between the two hemi crisp, and clear, no such differences
corpus callosum, it is necessary to spheres. When the information was are seen.

study people in whom it is still intact. presented to the right nondominant


Briefly, the original idea was to use hemisphere, the response took longer At the start thenwe may be faced with
lateralized visual stimuli in combina than when it was flashed to the left the fact that the callosum is a rather
tion with reaction-time measures in an speech hemisphere. limited communication channel. It
effort to determine the timing and normally is engaged in communicating
transfer properties of this great com We next examined whether the inter the activities of one half brain to the
missure. By asking for a spoken re hemispheric exchange relation could other in a still unspecified spatial
sponse in a left hemisphere-dominant be reversed (73). We thought by temporal neural code, and it does not
we a a task we could
person, had hoped to show dif taking visual-spatial easily encode for transmission weak sig
ference between the reaction time to now find right-hemisphere superiority. nals presented to one hemisphere. We

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can only make this very general assess 5. Gazzaniga, M. S. 1970. The
m Bisected 16. Johnson, J. D., and M. S. Gazzaniga.
ment at present, of course, even Brain. New York: Appleton-Century 1970. Interhemispheric imitation in
because
Crofts. Neurol. 27:
if such a code exists, we wouldn't split-brain monkeys. Exp.
206-12.
6. Gazzaniga, M. S. 1969. Processing of
recognize it if itwere placed in front of
17. J. D., and M. S. Gazzaniga.
us. Indeed the problem of properly
information by name: Differences be Johnson,
tween right and left hemisphere in nor 1971. Some effects of nonreinforcement
conceptualizing how this systemmight mal man. XIX International Conference in split-brain monkeys. PhysioL Behau.
work is both the challenge and the of Psychology. 6:703-06.

mystery of the corpus callosum.


18. Klatsky, R. L., and R. C. Atkinsson.
7. Diamond, S., A. R. Gibson, and M. S.
in press. 1970. Memory scan based on alterna
Gazzaniga. Neuropsychologia,
tive test stimulus representation. Percept,
8. Gazzaniga, M. S., and S. A. Hillyard.
Summary and implications 1971. Language and Speech
and Psychophysics 8:113-17.
Capacity
19. MacKay, D. M. 1966. In Brain and Con
of the *
It would seem fair to say that we now Right Hemisphere. Neuropsy
scious Experience, ed. John C. Eccles.
chologia 9:273-80.
know that the physical substrate of N.Y. : Springer-Verlag.
9. Gazzaniga, M. S., and S. A. Hillyard.
conscious experience exists in dupli In press. Attention mechanisms follow
20. McKeever, W. and M. D. Huling
F.,
cate in the human reasons 1971. Bilateral tachistoscopic word rec
brain. For In Attention & Per
ing brain bisection. as a function of hemisphere
that are not entirely clear, the separate formance IV, ed. Sylvan Kornblum. New ognition
stimulated and interhemispheric trans
systems are linked together in the
York: Academic Press.
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normal organism by the corpus cal 10. Gazzaniga, M. S., J. Posner, A. S.
21. Moscovitch, M., and J. Catlin. 1970.
Velletri, and M. T. Sarno. In prepara
losum. Furthermore, the critical func Interhemispheric transmission of infor
tion.
tion of assigning values, or response mation: Measurement in normal man.
11. Gazzaniga, M. S., A. S. Velletri, and Psychonomic Science 18:211-13.
probability, which is certainly a core D. Premack. 1971. Language training 22. David. 1971. in
activity of brain and behavior pro
Premack, Language
in brain-damaged human. Fed. Proc. Science 172:808-22.
can chimpanzee?
cesses, involves neural systems that 30:265.
23. Rizzolatti, G., C. A. Umlita, and G.
maintain a mutual independence after 12. Hillyard, S. A. 1971. The psychological Berlucchi. 1971. Opposite superiorities
cortical-cortical disconnection. While specificity of the contingent negative of right and left cerebral hemispheres in
it has never been clear what brain variation and late evoked potential. discriminative reaction time to phys
Electroenceph. Clin. Neurophysiol. 31:302
areas are involved in these crucial iognomical and alphabetical material.
03. Brain 94:431-42.
mechanisms in behavior, many re
13. Gibson, A. R., R. A. Filbey, and M. S. 24. Sperry, R. W. 1961. Cerebral organiza
searchers have assumed that sub
Gazzaniga. 1970. Hemisphere differ tion and behavior. Science 133:1749-56.
cortical systems, which remain func ences as reflected by reaction time. Fed. 25. Sperry, R. W. 1968. Hemisphere de
tionally interconnected in the cortical Proc. 29 :658. connection and unity in conscious ex
commissure-sectioned would
animal, 14. Gibson, A. R., and M. S. Gazzaniga. perience. Amer. Psychologist 22>:722>-33.
have been primarily involved. 1971. Hemisphere differences in eating 26. Sperry, R. W., and J. Levy. 1970. Lec
behavior in split-brain monkeys. Physiolo ture, A.P.A., Miami.
gist 14:150.
But, most importantly, in the normal 27. Trevarthen, C. B. 1970. Evidence for a

subject it is the interhemispheric con 15. Johnson, J. D., and M. S. Gazzaniga. brainstem contribution to visual per
1969. Cortical-cortical in in man. Brain Behav. Evol.
nections which allow for conscious pathways ception
volved in reinforcement. Nature 223-71. 3:338-52.
In other words, we can now say
unity.
that a particular brain structure, the
corpus callosum, transmits informa
tion responsible for subjective experi
ence. When it is intact, we have our
normal sense of conscious unity; with
out it the private experiences of the
right hemisphere go on outside the
awareness of the left, and vice versa.
As a result of these studies we have suc
ceeded in beginning to tie down highly
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
complex psychological processes to
specific neurological systems.

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