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February 1987

Ferrier and the Study of Auditory Cortex

Author Affiliations

From the Laboratory of Comparative Hearing, Bureau of Child Research, University of Kansas, Parsons.

Arch Neurol. 1987;44(2):218-221. doi:10.1001/archneur.1987.00520140078021

• David Ferrier was a British physician who studied the localization of function in the cerebral hemispheres during the latter half of the 19th century. Using stimulation and ablation techniques, Ferrier demonstrated that auditory cortex was located in the superior temporal gyrus of the monkey and that ablation of auditory cortex resulted in deafness. Although he was substantially correct, Ferrier's location of auditory cortex was not accepted by his contemporaries, and his observations of cortical deafness were, until recently, discounted by modern researchers. Just why his findings were rejected is of interest to the study of cortical function.