Examining the Effect of Subliminal Priming on Ambiguous Figure Perception

Misa Tsuruta


Figure-ground organization is a kind of perceptual organization that has been studied in Gestalt psychology. Ambiguous/reversible figures can evoke two different percepts. When we see ambiguous figures, sooner or later our perceptual system determines one side that stands out as the figure, while the other side forms the ground and becomes shapeless. Subjects were subliminally trained with the half-figures of the target ambiguous figures and then presented with the target figures. The result demonstrated above-chance level of consistency between the prime and the choice of the figure. From this result, it was concluded that subliminal priming of the figure had effects on figure-ground organization.

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