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The Asperger syndrome (AS) includes impaired recognition of other people’s mental states. Since language-based diagnostic procedures may be confounded by cognitive-linguistic compensation strategies, nonverbal test materials were created, including human affective and vegetative sounds. Depending on video context, each sound could be interpreted either as direct expression of an agent’s affective/vegetative state or as result of intentional-executive mental operations. “Situational relevance” and “intentionality” ratings by a group of twelve healthy subjects nicely differentiated between context types. By contrast, an AS subject showed a systematic overinterpretation of vegetative/affective signals in terms of planned activities. Such overestimation of intentional motivation, leading to impaired social cognition, might be due to the inability to utilize “affective resonance” mechanisms for the interpretation of an individual’s internal state.
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- Brief Report: Impaired Differentiation of Vegetative/Affective and Intentional Nonverbal Vocalizations in a Subject with Asperger Syndrome (AS)
- Springer US