Visual simulations in the two cerebral hemispheres: A bilingual perspective

Tal Norman*, Orna Peleg

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The ability of each hemisphere to construct visual simulations during first language (L1) and second language (L2) sentence reading was investigated. Late bilinguals read L1 and L2 sentences and decided after each sentence whether a pictured object was mentioned in the sentence. Target pictures were presented laterally in the left/right visual field (LVF/RVF) to the right/left hemisphere (RH/LH), respectively. 'Yes' responses were faster when the pictured object's shape matched, rather than mismatched, the sentence-implied shape, irrespective of the language involved. Critically, this visual shape effect was significant only under LVF/RH presentation, indicating that visual simulations are more likely to occur in the RH than in the LH. The fact that a similar experiment with central picture presentation has produced a significant shape effect only in the L1 (Norman & Peleg, 2022), suggests that under normal (central) reading conditions, the RH may be less involved in L2 than in L1 reading.

Original languageEnglish
Article number105291
JournalBrain and Language
StatePublished - Jul 2023


FundersFunder number
Israeli Ministry of Education


    • Divided visual field technique
    • Hemispheric asymmetry
    • Late Bilinguals
    • Visual simulations


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