Chapter

ORGANIZATION OF THE VISUAL SYSTEM

Nigel Daw

in How Vision Works

Published in print January 2012 | ISBN: 9780199751617
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199932375 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199751617.003.0002
ORGANIZATION OF THE VISUAL SYSTEM

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This chapter reviews the anatomy of the visual system. There are parallel pathways, starting in the retina, then going through the lateral geniculate nucleus, primary visual cortex (V1), secondary visual cortex (V2), then to areas specialized for color and form (V4), and motion and depth (V5). The system for inspecting objects goes on to ventral areas of the brain, including temporal cortex, and is known as the “what pathway.” The system for noticing objects goes on to dorsal areas of the brain, including parietal and frontal cortices, and is known as the “where pathway.” The pathways are kept separate in layers in the lateral geniculate and V1, and in columns in all areas of cortex. Psychophysical experiments support the separation of different aspects of vision in the analysis of objects.

Keywords: parallel pathways; lateral geniculate nucleus; visual cortex; v1; v2; v4; v5; “what” ventral pathway; “where” dorsal pathway; columns; hierarchy

Chapter.  9766 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Neuropsychology

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