Innate Rules of Universal Vision

While reading the chapter “Discovering the Beholder’s Share” in Kandel’s The Age of InsightI ran across the phrase “innate rules of universal vision” in a quote from Douglas Hoffman (Kandel 200).  What does this mean?  I googled and found an ebook excerpt from Visual Intelligence: How We Create What We See by Donald David Hoffman.

What I gleaned from this excerpt + I Came, I Saw, I Wrote: An Interdisciplinary Writing Unit for Bilingual Students by Ekaterina Barkhatova is that a parallel can be drawn with Chomsky-ian ideas of language (basically that a human is born with access to make a wide range of sounds, but cultural influence eventually leads the child to select the most effective sounds to create language), in that a person is born with the ability to perceive shapes and those shapes are refined by our experience until a rectangle becomes either an “H” or a block of text on a page.

That is my amateur understanding of this idea.


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