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Durham University

Psychology

Profile

Dr Bob Kentridge

Associate Professor (Reader) in the Department of Psychology
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 33 43261
Room number: L48A
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 33 40437

(email at robert.kentridge@durham.ac.uk)

Research Interests

My research falls into two related strands, one examining the relationship between visual attention and visual consciousness and the other the perception of the material properties of objects. In both areas I have tested the deficits suffered by neuropsychological patients in order to arrive at hypotheses about the manner in which psychological functions are broken down into sub-processes in the brain. I then go on to test these hypotheses using neuroimaging and psychophysical methods in normal people.

In 1999 I discovered that that prompting neurological patients to attend to areas in which they reported that they were blind as a consequence of their brain damage could, nevertheless, improve their ability to respond accurately to stimuli of which they were unaware. This dissociation between visual attention and awareness had major implications for theories about the basis of consciousness in the brain, for philosophers of mind and for the development of methods for rehabilitating patients with this, very common, form of brain damage. I have demonstrated the same dissociation in normal people for a variety of forms of attention. I have also applied these findings to development of methods of training stroke patients rendered partially blind to recover the ability to read. 

I also use psychophysical methods to understand the neural basis of colour perception by testing the abilities of patients with brain damage affecting colour vision. The processing of properties of materials such as texture, glossiness and translucence in the brain can be studied in a similar fashion. In a pair of papers combining psychophysics, work with neurological patients and neuroimaging, my colleagues and I were the first group to demonstrate specific areas in the brain for the processing of shape colour and texture. I have just published work extending this approach to the perception of glossiness and am currently developing computer programs allowing similar studies to be undertaken on the perception of translucence. These properties have a tremendous influence on our perception of the world. Inappropriate glossiness or translucence make people look like waxworks, milk look like paint and fruit look rotten. Understanding how we perceive these properties has implications well beyond basic psychological science in computer-graphics and consumer-products industries.


Research Interests

  • Neuropsychology of awareness, blindsight, colour vision and attention

Selected Publications

Book review

  • Kentridge, R.W. (2003). Review of B.R. Conway 'Neural mechanisms of color vision'. Perception 32: 641-642.
  • Kentridge, R.W. (2000). In my view, it's a question of wiring. Review of J.E. Dowling 'Creating Mind: How the Brain Works'. Times Higher Educational Supplement May 12th 2000 (number 1,435): 24.
  • Kentridge, R.W. (2000). The feeling of what happens: body, emotion and the making of consciousness. Perception 29: 1397-1398.
  • Kentridge, R.W. (1998). Where d'you get those eyes? Review of N Wade, 'A Natural History of Vision' New Scientist 48: 48.
  • Kentridge, R.W. (1995). Review of J.L. McGaugh, N.M. Weinberger & G. Lynch 'Brain Organization & Memory'. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology B 48: 93-94.
  • Kentridge, R.W. (1995). Review of P. Churchland & T.J. Sejnowski 'The Computational Brain'. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology B 48: 376-377.
  • Kentridge, R.W. (1992). Review of J.L. Davies & H. Eichenbaum Eds. 'Olfaction: A Model System for Computational Neuroscience'. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology B 45: 261-264.

Chapter in book

  • Kentridge, RW & Brogaard, B (2016). The Functional Roles of Attention. In Current Controversies in Philosophy of Perception. Nanay, B New York; Abingdon: Routledge. 139-147.
  • Kentridge, R.W. (2015). Change Blindness. In The International Encyclopedia of Social and Behavioral Sciences. Wright, J.D. Oxford: Elsevier. 344-349.
  • Kentridge, R.W. (2011). Attention without awareness: A brief review. In Attention: Philosophical and Psychological Essays. Mole, C., Smithies, D. & Wu, W. Oxford Oxford University Press. 228-246
  • Heywood, C.A. & Kentridge, R.W. (2009). Akinetopsia. In The Oxford Companion to Consciousness. Bayne, T., Cleemans, A. & Wilken, P. Oxford Oxford University Press. 24-25
  • Kentridge, R.W. & Heywood, C.A. (2009). Colour: Scientific perspectives. In The Oxford Companion to Consciousness. Bayne, T., Cleermans, A. & Wilken, P. Oxford Oxford University Press. 149-155
  • Kentridge, R.W. (2008). Blindsight. In Encyclopedia of Neuroscience. Binder, M.D., Hirokawa, N. & Windhorst, U. Heidelberg Springer-Verlag. 426-429
  • Kentridge, R.W. (2003). Blindsight. In The Encyclopaedia of Cognitive Science (Volume 1). Nadel, L. London Nature Publishing Group. 390-397
  • Kentridge, R.W., Heywood, C.A. & Davidoff, J. (2003). Color perception. In Handbook of brain theory & neural-networks (2nd Edition). Arbib, M.A. Cambridge MA MIT Press. 230-233
  • Kentridge, R.W. & Heywood, C.A. (2001). Attention & alerting: Cognitive processes spared in blindsight. In Out of Mind. Varieties of Unconscious Processing: New Findings & Models. De Gelder, B., De Haan, E. & Heywood, C.A. Oxford Oxford University Press. 163-181
  • Heywood, C.A., Kentridge, R.W. & Cowey, A. (2001). Colour & the cortex: Wavelength processing in cortical achromatopsia. In Out of Mind. Varieties of Unconscious Processing: New Findings & Models. De Gelder, B., De Haan, E. & Heywood, C.A. Oxford Oxford University Press. 52-68
  • Kentridge, R.W., Heywood, C.A. & Weiskrantz, L. (1999). Attending, seeing and knowing in blindsight. In Toward a Science of Consciousness III. Hameroff, S., Chalmers, D. & Kazniak, A. Cambridge MA MIT Press. 149-160
  • Murray, K., Grossman, D. & Kentridge, R.W. (1999). Behavioral Psychology. In The Encyclopaedia of Violence, Peace & Conflict, Volume 1. Kurtz, L. New York Academic Press. 187-195
  • Kentridge, R.W. (1997). Dynamics and computational power in biologically plausible neural newtork models. In Perspectives in Neural Computing. Browne, A. Bristol Institute of Physics Press. 51-71
  • Kentridge, R.W. (1995). Cortical neurocomputation, language and cognition. In Connectionist Models of Memory and Language. Levy, J., Bairaktaris, D., Bullinaria, J. & Cairns, P. London UCL Press. 181-205
  • Kentridge, R.W. (1994). Critical dynamics of neural networks with spatially localised connections. In Neurodynamics and Psychology. Oaksford, M. & Brown, G. London Academic Press. 183-216
  • Kentridge, R.W. (1993). Dissipative structures and self-organizing criticality in neural networks with spatially localized connectivity. In Eeckman, F.H. & Bower, J.M. Boston Kluwer. 531-535
  • Findlay, J.M., Davies, S.P., Kentridge, R.W., Lambert, A.J. & Kelly, J. (1988). Optimum display arrangements for presenting visual reminders. In People and Computers IV. Jones, D.M. & Winder, R. Cambridge Cambridge University Press. 453-464

Edited book

  • Findlay, J.M., Walker, R. & Kentridge, R.W. (1995). Eye movement research: Mechanisms, processes and applications. (Studies in visual information processing. Volume 6.). Amsterdam North-Holland.

Journal Article

Newspaper/Magazine Article

  • Ferguson, M., Neave, N.J., Kentridge, R.W. & Aggleton, J.P. (1993). Do right-handed cricketers live longer? The Cricket Statistician 81: 12-13.

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