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Poster B44

The Mind as a Mirror: Rendering Mental Self-Images

Poster Session B - Sunday, April 14, 2024, 8:00 – 10:00 am EDT, Sheraton Hall ABC

Arijit De1 (, Shao Feng Liu1, Yong Zhong Liang1, Moaz Shoura1, Adrian Nestor1; 1University of Toronto

Self perception plays a crucial role in human cognition and behaviour, impacting self-esteem, self-concept, and everyday social interactions. While facial images are commonly used for individual recognition, there is limited understanding of how accurately mental representations of one's own face align with their actual facial appearance. To handle this challenge, the present study employed a behavioral-based image reconstruction approach as applied to facial similarity data. Specifically, a cohort of female Caucasian adults (N=28) evaluated the resemblance between pairs of female face images, including images of their own faces. Participants were also tasked with recalling a mental image of their own face and rating its similarity to a set of visually presented face stimuli. Image reconstruction was then applied to both sets of data to generate a visual representation of each participant's self separately from perception and memory. Accuracy was gauged by comparing reconstructions with the participants' actual images. Our investigation unveiled successful levels of reconstruction accuracy for both perceptual and memory-based representations as well as a clear relationship between the two. Additionally, we examined and depicted systematic distortions in self-image across participants. Finally, we linked these distortions to visual recognition abilities and measures of self-esteem.

Topic Area: EMOTION & SOCIAL: Self perception


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April 13–16  |  2024