Encyclopedia of Clinical Neuropsychology

2018 Edition
| Editors: Jeffrey S. Kreutzer, John DeLuca, Bruce Caplan


  • Giulia RighiEmail author
  • Beth A. Jerskey
  • Michael J. Tarr
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-57111-9_1393


Face blindness

Short Description or Definition

Prosopagnosia is a neurological disorder characterized by the inability to visually recognize familiar faces as well as learn to identify new faces; classification of other objects (e.g., man-made tools), however, is typically spared.


The term “prosopagnosia” was first introduced by Bodamer in the 1940s (Bodamer 1947) to define visual deficits in recognizing familiar faces and learning new faces.

Prosopagnosia has been divided into two subtypes: apperceptive and associative (see Barton 2003, for a review). Apperceptive prosopagnosia refers to an impairment in face recognition that is caused by deficits at the perceptual level. That is, there is a lack of an accurate representation of a face that can be used to effectively process its identity. Associative prosopagnosia refers to a deficit in retrieving the stored representation of a face that is necessary for recognition, despite an accurate perceptual...

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References and Readings

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Giulia Righi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Beth A. Jerskey
    • 2
  • Michael J. Tarr
    • 1
  1. 1.Visual Neuroscience LaboratoryBrown UniversityProvidenceUSA
  2. 2.Department of Psychiatry and Human BehaviorAlpert Medical School of Brown UniversityProvidenceUSA