[Neuroscience] Subjective experience of blinds

Majid Beshkar via neur-sci%40net.bio.net (by majid.beshkar from yahoo.com)
Wed Nov 1 15:31:35 EST 2006

Dear researchers,
  Several months ago, I asked a man, who had become completely blind as a result of eye injury in the war, to describe me his subjective visual experience. I asked him whether his current experience was similar to that of being in complete darkness before being injured in the war. He told me he had no visual experience at all, neither an experience like being in darkness nor any other kind of experience.
  Later I asked the same question from a woman who had become temporarily blind while she was pregnant and completely recovered after parturition. She described her subjective experience during the blind period as of being in a very thick fog. She could not discriminate anything in that fog even when the doctor projected a beam of light directly onto her eyes. 
  The marked differences in the subjective visual experience of these two blind cases led me to ask whether different blind patients with different underlying pathology have different subjective experience in visual modality; and, furthermore, whether there is a relationship between the cause of blindness and the subjective visual experience of the blinds.
  I would be very thankful to anybody who could provide me with at least some clues to find the answers to these questions.
  Moreover, if you know any blind person please ask him/her to describe his/her subjective visual experience and compare that to such experience as being in complete darkness, thick fog, etc. it would be very helpful to know the underlying pathology  too. 
  Thanks in advance for your answers.
  Best of luck,
  Majid Beshkar

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