Synaesthesia in colour
Synaesthesia is an inherited condition that can give rise to a ‘merging of the senses’. People with synaesthesia experience unusual perceptions (e.g. colours, tastes) when engaged in everyday activities like reading, speaking, listening to music, and so on. Synaesthetic perceptions of colour can be triggered by a range of stimuli, including sounds, tastes, smells, touches, and even linguistic stimuli such as letters, numbers and words. In this paper, I describe work on colour synaesthesia from the <i>Synaesthesia and Sensory Integration Lab</i> at Edinburgh University, where we examine the cognitive, linguistic, and developmental basis of this unusual condition. These data contribute to the emerging view that synaesthetes and non-synaesthetes lie on a continuum of cross-sensory association, but one where neuro-developmental differences allow synaesthetes to experience these colour associations at a conscious level.