The Complementary Properties of Holistic and Analytic Representations of Shape

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This chapter argues that holistic and analytical processes are served by different systems because they have different computational requirements. Holistic object representations are generated and used all of a piece. Conjunction codes in which features are statically bound by virtue of their retinotopic spatial locations underlie holistic processes. The discussion holds that analytic representation of an object is one in which the parts are represented independently of each other and of their spatial relationships. An analytic representation of an object is created by dynamically binding together the contents of the current focus of attention. Dynamic binding is computationally costly in that it takes time, but it is flexible because the features are bound together temporarily rather than permanently and, therefore, can be considered together or separately under different situations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationPerception of Faces, Objects, and Scenes
Subtitle of host publicationAnalytic and Holistic Processes
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780199848058
ISBN (Print)9780195313659
StatePublished - Jun 22 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Category learning
  • Conjunction codes
  • Dynamic binding
  • Object recognition
  • Object shape

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology


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