My hand is not my own! experimental elicitation of body disownership

Yuta Nishiyama*, Shimpei Tatsumi, Shusaku Nomura, Yukio Pegio Gunji

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


We conducted an experiment in which visual discontinuity between one’s own body parts disturbs the unity of the body and elicits subjective and conscious disownership. Previous studies have demonstrated a decrease in feelings of ownership over an external object from a first-person viewpoint. In contrast, the present study suggests that people can feel explicit disownership of their own body from a third-person viewpoint. The current experiment presented participants with live, lateral images of their own body. During the trial, they moved and observed their arms within the following restrictions: In the “hide” condition, an elbow was hidden behind the upper body, obscuring the smooth connection between the arm and upper body. In the “display” condition, the elbow was displayed in front of the upper body to better display the smooth connection. Questionnaire results demonstrated that the participants felt disownership of their arms while retaining agency. Therefore, this experiment sheds new light on bodily awareness.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)425-434
Number of pages10
JournalPsychology and Neuroscience
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Dec 1


  • Bodily awareness
  • Bodily self-consciousness
  • Body disownership
  • Sense of agency
  • Sense of ownership

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology


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