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date: 09 August 2020

Abstract and Keywords

In this chapter I give an overview of the proposals captured by ATOM (Walsh, 2003), and show how magnitude processing and synaesthesia are varieties of the same problem. ATOM posits that traditionally separated modalities of number, time, space, and quantity more generally should be re-conceptualised as different manifestations of the same prothetic dimension, which originate from a single metric in early childhood development, and which develop by motoric interactions with the environment. I show that both ATOM and synaesthesia challenge entrenched view of modularity, and that both invite a close inspection of ideas on directional symmetry, mapping and integration, differences between pre- linguistic and linguistic thinking, sensory and metaphorical approaches to experience and the functions of the parietal lobe.

Keywords: number, time, magnitude, space, quantity, ATOM, parietal cortex, motor interactions, modularity, symmetry

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