Glossary

corpus callosum Largest fiber tract that connects the left and right cerebral hemispheres.

handedness The tendency to prefer the use of one hand over the other and for motor performance to be better for the preferred hand.

hemispheric asymmetry Biological and functional differences between the left and right sides of the cerebral cortex.

hemisphericity Indication of the extent to which an individual is more reliant on the left or on the right cerebral hemisphere, inferred from measurement of the individual's cognitive skills and biases.

laterality Behavioral and biological manifestations of left-right brain differences or of hemispheric asymmetry.

manual praxis Purposeful, sequential actions in which spatial constraints imposed by the environment are minimal.

planum temporale Cortical area located on the superior surface of the temporal lobe posterior to the transverse auditory gyrus of Heschl.

split-brain patients Individuals whose left and right cerebral hemispheres have been surgically disconnected by severing the corpus callosum and other connecting fibers.

Sylvian fissure Deep groove on the lateral surfaces of the cerebral hemispheres that marks the boundary between the frontal and parietal lobes above and the temporal lobe below.

Laterality refers to the behavioral and biological manifestations of asymmetry between the left and right cerebral hemispheres. The cerebral cortex of the human brain is divided anatomically into two hemispheres, the left and the right. Although the two hemispheres are similar in appearance and structure, they are not biologically identical and they have different information processing abilities and propensities. This article provides an overview of this brain laterality and its consequences for perception, cognition, emotion, and action.

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