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Lateralization of Auditory Processing of Silbo Gomero

Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, Biopsychology, Department of Psychology, Ruhr University Bochum, 44801 Bochum, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Symmetry 2020, 12(7), 1183;
Received: 22 April 2020 / Revised: 17 June 2020 / Accepted: 5 July 2020 / Published: 17 July 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cognitive and Neurophysiological Models of Brain Asymmetry)
Left-hemispheric language dominance is a well-known characteristic of the human language system. However, it has been shown that leftward language lateralization decreases dramatically when people communicate using whistles. Whistled languages present a transformation of a spoken language into whistles, facilitating communication over great distances. In order to investigate the laterality of Silbo Gomero, a form of whistled Spanish, we used a vocal and a whistled dichotic listening task in a sample of 75 healthy Spanish speakers. Both individuals that were able to whistle and to understand Silbo Gomero and a non-whistling control group showed a clear right-ear advantage for vocal dichotic listening. For whistled dichotic listening, the control group did not show any hemispheric asymmetries. In contrast, the whistlers’ group showed a right-ear advantage for whistled stimuli. This right-ear advantage was, however, smaller compared to the right-ear advantage found for vocal dichotic listening. In line with a previous study on language lateralization of whistled Turkish, these findings suggest that whistled language processing is associated with a decrease in left and a relative increase in right hemispheric processing. This shows that bihemispheric processing of whistled language stimuli occurs independent of language. View Full-Text
Keywords: Silbo Gomero; whistle language; cerebral lateralization; brain asymmetry; dichotic listening task Silbo Gomero; whistle language; cerebral lateralization; brain asymmetry; dichotic listening task
MDPI and ACS Style

Villar González, P.; Güntürkün, O.; Ocklenburg, S. Lateralization of Auditory Processing of Silbo Gomero. Symmetry 2020, 12, 1183.

AMA Style

Villar González P, Güntürkün O, Ocklenburg S. Lateralization of Auditory Processing of Silbo Gomero. Symmetry. 2020; 12(7):1183.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Villar González, Pamela; Güntürkün, Onur; Ocklenburg, Sebastian. 2020. "Lateralization of Auditory Processing of Silbo Gomero" Symmetry 12, no. 7: 1183.

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