Barnhart, Ehlert, Goldinger, and Mackey on Cross-modal Attentional Entrainment: Insights From Magicians @MagicTony

Anthony S. Barnhart, Mandy J. Ehlert, Stephen D. Goldinger, and Alison D. Mackey, have published Cross-modal Attentional Entrainment: Insights From Magicians at Attention, Perception, and Psychopsychics 1 (March 2018). Here is the abstract. Recently, performance magic has become a source of insight into the processes underlying awareness. Magicians have highlighted a set of variables that can create moments of visual attentional suppression, which they call “off-beats.” One of these variables is akin to the phenomenon psychologists know as attentional entrainment. The current experiments, inspired by performance magic, explore the extent to which entrainment can occur across sensory modalities. Across two experiments using a difficult dot probe detection task, we find that the mere presence of an auditory rhythm can bias when visual attention is deployed, speeding responses to stimuli appearing in phase with the rhythm. However, the extent of this cross-modal…

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