Allik J, Rauk M, Luuk A, 1981, "Control and sense of eye movement behind closed eyelids" Perception 10(1) 39 – 51
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Control and sense of eye movement behind closed eyelids
Juri Allik, Marika Rauk, Aavo Luuk
Received 13 June 1979, in revised form 10 December 1979
Abstract. To investigate the question of what happens with regard to position sense and control of the human eyes when the eyelids are closed, the contact-wire-free electromagnetic eye movement recording method was developed. It was shown that after the start of blinking or eyelid closure, the eyball moves up as the upper eyelids come down. Experimental data show human inability to maintain a given position of the eyes in the head under the closed eyelids. When the subject was asked to follow a simple geometrical path, a very weak metrical and topological correspondence between desired and actual paths occurred with closed eyes. It is proposed that the poor control of eye movements behind closed eyelids is due to the lack of available information about eye position in the head. The assumption was confirmed by providing artificial auditory feedback about eyeball position to the subject, which can be effectively used for gaze stabilization by the subject. It is suggested that visual information is the only useful basis for eye movement regulation under normal conditions.
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