Activation without selection: parallel right hemisphere roles in language and intentional movement?

Brain and Language
L Richards, C Chiarello

Abstract

Because language and praxis each require the activation and selection of knowledge structures in long-term memory (MacKay, 1985, 1987), it is reasonable to consider whether hemisphere asymmetries for such processes span both domains. Language and skilled movement are thought to be strongly lateralized to the left hemisphere in most individuals. Yet, although recent evidence suggests that the right hemisphere also contributes to language use in context, few similar arguments have been made for the right hemisphere's involvement in motor planning. In this paper, we review some of the evidence for a right hemisphere role in language and action processing and propose that within each domain the right hemisphere activates a range of relevant knowledge structures without selection.

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