"I have trouble with faces"
November 10, 2003 6:17 PM   Subscribe

Face blind: Imagine living in a world in which you are surrounded by blank faces. You see people all around you, but you can't recognize them by their faces, only by context, clothing, and hair. You don't recognize your neighbors when you see them in the grocery store, and you couldn't pick your co-workers' faces out of a line-up. You have to learn special coping methods to get through your daily social activities. This is what it is like to have prosopagnosia, or face blindness.
posted by litlnemo (7 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Reminds me of paintings by August Macke. I'd never heard of this phenemon before; can't imagine living with it. Thanks.
posted by onlyconnect at 6:51 PM on November 10, 2003

It always amazes me how much of our day to day is controlled by teeny tiny bits of brain. It never stops amazing me that when just one part quits, reality as we know it falls apart.
posted by daver at 9:40 PM on November 10, 2003

Weird -- this made me think of a post from earlier today almost instantly. (Fascinating links, by the way!)
posted by UlfMagnet at 10:20 PM on November 10, 2003

That first link was a wonderfully imaginative way of describing the disability, and gives one some real sense of what a face-blind person is dealing with.

Great post, altogether, litlnemo. Thanks.
posted by taz at 12:05 AM on November 11, 2003

i once had concussion (came off my bike) and was blind for a while. on the way to the hospital (someone kindly stopped, scraped me off the pavement and took me in their car) my vision started to return. for a while i could see shapes, but everything was white. so i could see white cars driving around on white roads, etc. or rather, more than white, i just couldn't see details - only the "what *thing* am i looking at" part of my brain seemed to be working. it's not the same as prosopagnosia, i know, but kind of similar. it was fascinating (i guess i was in shock, but it certainly took my mind off the pain from my other injuries). i guess the guy driving must have been a bit freaked out - having someone next to him dripping blood onto his upholstery and saying "hey, i can see things, but everything is white, oh cool, and now in the centre of my vision there's colour and, wow, get this, ..."
posted by andrew cooke at 3:41 AM on November 11, 2003

Scary. Too much of this info describes my life of "Whoops... sorry... wrong person".

Being in retail just makes this all the more fun. Just yesterday, the same guy stopped at the store twice. I honestly had no clue it was the same guy, despite the fact I had a prolonged (1 hour) conversation with him earlier that day, until he mentioned it.

Happy to have found the link. Thanks.
posted by shepd at 6:13 AM on November 11, 2003

Fascinating links--thanks.
posted by Prospero at 7:21 AM on November 11, 2003

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