Perceiving a stranger's voice as being one's own: a 'rubber voice' illusion?

Zane Z Zheng, Ewen MacDonald, Kevin G Munhall, Ingrid S Johnsrude

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Abstract

We describe an illusion in which a stranger's voice, when presented as the auditory concomitant of a participant's own speech, is perceived as a modified version of their own voice. When the congruence between utterance and feedback breaks down, the illusion is also broken. Compared to a baseline condition in which participants heard their own voice as feedback, hearing a stranger's voice induced robust changes in the fundamental frequency (F0) of their production. Moreover, the shift in F0 appears to be feedback dependent, since shift patterns depended reliably on the relationship between the participant's own F0 and the stranger-voice F0. The shift in F0 was evident both when the illusion was present and after it was broken, suggesting that auditory feedback from production may be used separately for self-recognition and for vocal motor control. Our findings indicate that self-recognition of voices, like other body attributes, is malleable and context dependent.
Original languageEnglish
JournalP L o S One
Volume6
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)e18655
ISSN1932-6203
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes

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