SEbastian DIEGUEZ, phd


Department of Medicine, Neurology, University of Fribourg
Chemin du Musée 5, CH-1700 FRIBOURG




Research Interests

The self, corporeal awareness, disorders of consciousness, art and the brain

In my experience as a clinical neuropsychologist and cognitive neuroscientist, I have been primarily interested in the neurological and cognitive mechanisms of bodily awareness. I have investigated this topic through the assessment of neurological patients, behavioural studies on tactile illusions and neuroimaging experiments. As such, I have developed skills in a number of neuroscientific techniques: experimental design, statistical analysis, lesion analysis, EEG, fMRI, and neuropsychological assessment.

Currently, I am interested in the interactions between language, bodily- and spatial-awareness, and especially what bilingual individuals can teach us about such interactions.


Clinical neuropsychology, Behavioral measures, EEG 




  • Wagner-Egger P, Delouvée S, Gauvrit N, Dieguez S.
    Creationism and conspiracism share a common teleological bias.
    Current Biology
    . 2018.
  • Dieguez S.
    Total Bullshit! Au coeur de la post-vérité.
    Paris: PUF. 2018.
  • Dieguez S, Kaeser M, Roux C, Cottet J, Annoni JM, Schidlin E.
    Birth and death of a phantom.
    Annals of Clinical and Translational Neurology, 5(1): 98-101, 2018. [Pubmed]
  • Dieguez S.
    Cotard syndrome.
    Front Neurol Neurosci, 42: 23-34, 2018. [Pubmed]
  • Dieguez S.
    Ganser syndrome.
    Front Neurol Neurosci, 42: 1-22,2018. [Pubmed]



  • Heydrich L, Kaliuzhna M, Dieguez S, Naxos R, Blanke O, Seeck M.
    Ictal postural phantom limb sensation is associated with impaired mental imagery of body parts.
    J Neurol
    , 264(7): 1532-1535, 2017. [Pubmed]
  • Dieguez S & Lopez C.
    The bodily self: insights from clinical and experimental research.
    Ann Phys Rehabil Med, 60(3): 198-207, 2017. [Pubmed]
  • Dieguez S.
    Post-truth: the dark side of the brain. 
    Scientific American Mind
    , 28(5), 43-48, 2017. [Direct link]



  • Dieguez S, Bronner G, Campion-Vincent V, Delouvée S, Gauvrit N, Lantian A, Wagner-Egger P.
    “They” respond: comments on Basham et al.’s "Social Science’s Conspiracy-Theory Panic: Now They Want to Cure Everyone”. 
    Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective
    , 5, 20-39,2016.
  • Dieguez S.
    Micromégas: altered body-environment scaling in literary fiction.
    Front Psychol
    , 7:556, 2016. [Pubmed]



  • Dieguez S, Wagner-Egger P, Gauvrit N.
    Nothing Happens by Accident, or Does It? A Low Prior for Randomness Does Not Explain Belief in Conspiracy Theories.
    Psychological Science, 26(11) : 1762-1770, 2015. [Pubmed]
  • Chouiter L, Tzovara A, Dieguez S, Annoni JM, Magezi D, De Lucia M, Spierer L.
    Experience-based auditory predictions modulate brain activity to silence as do real sounds.
    J Cogn Neurosci, 27(10): 1968-1980, 2015. [Pubmed]
  • Martuzzi R, van der Zwaag W, Dieguez S, Serino A, Gruetter R, Blanke O.
    Distinct contributions of Brodmann areas 1 and 2 to body ownership.
    Social Cognitive & Affective Neuroscience
    , 10(11): 1449-1459, 2015. [Pubmed]



  • Bogousslavsky J & Dieguez S.
    Sigmund Freud and hysteria: the ethology of psychoanalysis?
    Front Neurol Neurosci, 35:109-125, 2014.
  • Chouiter L, Dieguez S, Annoni JM, Spierer L.
    High and low stimulus-driven conflict engage segregated brain networks, not quantitatively different resources.
    Brain Topogr
    , 27: 279-292, 2014.
  • Dieguez S.
    La narration imagée de l'homme-machine.
    Histoires Littéraires, 59-60:15-40, 2014. [Direct link to book]
  • Dieguez S., Hemmerle S.
    Bilingualism beyond language : taking the double personality hypothesis seriously.
    Revue de neuropsychologie
    , 2014, In Press [Direct link to the article in french]



  • Ghika J, Dieguez S, Assal F, Demonet JF.
    Conduites spéculaires dans les démences: les multiples signes du miroir.
    Rev Méd Suisse
    , 9: 2095-2099, 2013.
  • Dieguez S & Annoni J.M.
    Stranger than fiction: literary and clinical amnesia.
    Front Neurol Neurosci
    , 31: 137-168, 2013.
  • Dieguez S., Annoni J.M.
    Asomatognosia: disorders of the bodily self.
    In Godefroy O. (ed.) Vascular Cognitive Impairment and Dementia: The Behavioral and Cognitive Neurology of Stroke, 2nd edition, chapter13, Cambridge University Press, p. 170-192, 2013. [Direct link to book section]



  • Dieguez S, Scherer J, Blanke O.
    My face through the looking-glass: the effect of mirror reversal on reflection size estimation.
    Consciousness and Cognition, 20(4):1452-1459, 2011. [DOI] [Pubmed]



  • Heydrich L., Dieguez S., Grunwald T., Seeck M., Blanke O.
    Illusory own body perceptions: case reports and relevance for bodily self-consciousness.
    Consciousness and Cognition, 19(3): 702-706, 2010. [DOI] [Pubmed]



  • Dieguez S., Mercier M., Newby N., Blanke O.
    Feeling numbness for someone else's finger.
    Current Biology, 19(24): R1108-R1109, 2009. [DOI] [Pubmed]
  • Khateb A., Simon SR., Dieguez S., Lazeyras F., Momjian-Mayor I., Blanke O., Landis T., Pegna AJ., Annoni JM.
    Seeing the phantom: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study of a supernumerary phantom limb.
    Annals of Neurology, 65(6): 698-705, 2009. [DOI] [Pubmed]



  • Carota A., Dieguez S., Bogousslavsky J.
    Psychopathologie des accidents vasculaires cérébraux.
    Psycholologie & Neuropsychiatrie du Vieillissement, 3(4): 235-249, 2005. [Pubmed]
  • Dieguez S.
    Vers une neuropsychologie sociale.
    Archives suisses de neurologie et de Psychiatrie, 156 : 147-172, 2005.
  • Croquelois A., Assal G., Annoni JM., Staub F., Gronchi A., Bruggimann L., Dieguez S., Bogousslavsky J. (2005).
    Diseases of the nervous system : patients’ aetiological beliefs.
    Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, Psychiatry, 76(4): 582-584, 2005. [DOI] [Pubmed]
  • Dieguez S., Staub F., Bruggimann L., Bogousslavsky J.
    Is poststroke depression a vascular depression?
    Journal of Neurological Sciences, 226(1-2): 53-58, 2004. [DOI] [Pubmed]



  • Perrin A., Dieguez S., Schluep M., Greber C., Vingerhoets F.
    Epilepsie, accidents vasculaires cérébraux, parkinsonisme et sclérose en plaques : comportement et humeur.
    Archives suisses de neurologie et de Psychiatrie, 153 : 393-402, 2002.



Dieguez S. Maux d’artistes: ce que cachent les oeuvres. Belin, 2010. [Link]


Book chapters and miscellaneous:

  • Lopez C., Dieguez S.
    La représentation du corps et ses troubles: approches de la neuropsychologie et des neurosciences cognitives.
    In: Pérennou D., Rode G., Azouvi P. and Brun V. (Eds.). La cognition spatiale. Sauramps Médical, Montpellier, p. 63-88, 2015.
  • Dieguez S., Blanke O.
    Altered states of bodily consciousness.
    Cardeña E. & Winkelman M. (Eds.), Altering consciousness: A multidisciplinary perspective. Westport: Praeger, 2011.
  • Dieguez S.
    "A man can be destroyed but not defeated": Ernest Hemingway's near-death experience and declining health.
    Frontiers of Neurology and Neuroscience, 27: 174-206, 2010. [DOI] [Pubmed]
  • Blanke O., Dieguez S. 
    Leaving body and life behind: out-of-body and near-death experience.
    In: Laureys S. & Tononi G. (eds.) The Neurology of Consciousness: cognitive neuroscience and neuropathology. Elsevier. pp. 303-325, 2009. [Full Text]
  • Blanke O., Forcucci L., Dieguez S.
    Don't forget the artists when studying perception of art.
    Nature, 462(7276): 984, 2009. [DOI] [Pubmed]
  • Dieguez S.
    NDE experiment: ethical concerns (with responses from Chris French and Susan Blackmore).
    Skeptical Inquirer, 33(5): 44-48, 2009. [Full Text]
  • Dieguez S.
    The soul of the gaps (review of Irreducible Mind: toward a psychology for the 21st century, by EF Kelly, EW Kelly, A Crabtree, A Gauld, M Grosso and B Greyson).
    Skeptic, 15(1): 75-77, 2008. [Full Text]
  • Dieguez S.
    NDE Redux: skeptics need to reclaim, redefine and embrace near death experiences.
    Skeptic, 14(3): 42-43, 2008. [Full Text]
  • Dieguez S., Staub F., Bogousslavsky J.
    In Bogousslavsky J. & Godefroy O. (eds).The Behavioral and Cognitive Neurology of Stroke. Cambridge University Press. pp. 215-253, 2007. [DOI]
  • Dieguez S., Bogousslavsky J.
    Baudelaire’s aphasia: from poetry to cursing.
    Frontiers of Neurology and Neuroscience, 22: 121-149, 2007. [DOI] [Pubmed]
  • Dieguez S., Assal G., Bogousslavsky J.
    Visconti and Fellini: from left social neorealism to right-hemisphere stroke.
    Frontiers of Neurology and Neuroscience, 22: 44-74, 2007. [DOI] [Pubmed]
  • Dieguez S., Bogousslavsky S.
    The one-man band of pain: Alphonse Daudet and his painful experience of tabes dorsalis.
    Frontiers of Neurology and Neuroscience, 19: 17-45, 2005. [Full Text]
  • Dieguez S. 
    Review of “Neurology of Cognitive and Behavioral Disorders”
    by Devinsky O. & M D’Esposito. Archives suisses de neurologie et de Psychiatrie,  7: 392-393, 2005.
  • Dieguez S.
    Review of Cross-Walks ICD-10/DSM-IV-TR. European Neurology, 52: 65, 2004.




Abstracts and oral platforms:

Dieguez S (2009). Comfortably numb: fusion of self and other by touch. ASSC XIII Berlin (5-9 June 2009). Oral Platform. 

Dieguez S, Newby N, Mercier M, Blanke O (2008). Feeling numbness in someone else’s finger. FENS Geneva, 2008.

Lopez C, Bachofner C, Mercier, M, Dieguez S, Blanke, O. How gravity and own body orientation influence stability judgments of visually presented human body postures. The sense of body: an interdisciplinary summer school on body representation, Bologna, Italy, June 2008.

Dieguez S, Scherer J, Blanke O (2008) Taking a long, hard look in the mirror: influence of left-right reversal on the processing of self and familiar faces. CNS San Francisco, 2008.

Molnar-Sakacs I, Dieguez S, Blanke O (2007) This hand is your hand, this hand is my hand. CNS New York, 2007.

Blanke O, Dieguez S, Ortigue S (2007) Somatoparaphrenia. Workshop on body representation, Manchester, England, 23.10.2007.

Dieguez S, Staub F, Carota A and Bogousslavsky (2006). Aware of an absent limb, unaware of a plegic one: anosognosia after stroke in an amputated patient. Abstract presented at the XVth European Stroke Conference, Bruxelles, may 2006.

Carota A, Dieguez S, Michel P and Bogousslavsky (2006). Severe Auto-Hetero-topagnosia and ideomotor apraxia without aphasia after stroke. Report of two cases. Abstract presented at the XVth European Stroke Conference, Bruxelles, may 2006.

Dieguez S and Bogousslavsky J (2006). Dictante dolore: Alphonse Daudet, Jean-Martin Charcot and neurosyphilis in Paris fin de siècle. Abstract presented at the European Neurological Society, Lausanne, May 2006.

Dieguez S, Staub F, Carota A and Bogousslavsky J. (2006). Conscience d’une jambe absente, négligence d’un bras present. Oral platform at the XVIIIth Réunion Franco-romande de Neurologie, Dijon.

Carota A, Dieguez S and Bogousslavsky J. (2006). Une ou deux femmes ? Oral platform at the XVIIIth Réunion Franco-romande de Neurologie, Dijon.

Dieguez S and Bogousslavsky J (2006). Alphonse Daudet and Neurosyphilis in Paris fin de siècle. Oral platform at American Academy of Neurology, History of Neurology Section, San Diego.

Dieguez S, Viollier S and Bogousslavsky J (2005). The man who could not remember he is a woman: patient XY, thalamic amnesia in a male-to-female transsexual. Abstract presented at the XIVth European Stroke Conference, Bologna, may 2005.

Dieguez S, Carota A and Bogousslavsky J (2005). Souvenirs perdus dans le temps. Oral platform at the XVIIth Réunion Franco-romande de Neurologie, Lyon.

Aybek S, Croquelois A, Dieguez S, et al (2004). Neglect in the six hours of stroke. Program and abstracts of the American Academy of Neurology 56th Annual Meeting; April 24-May 1, 2004; San Francisco, California. Abstract S49.002.

Dieguez S, Viollier S and Bogousslavsky J (2004). Amnésie identitaire chez un transsexuel. Oral platform at the XVIth Réunion Franco-romande de Neurologie, Grenoble.

Dieguez S, Urben L, Gronchi-Perrin A, Guex P, Assal G and Bogousslavsky J (2004). Une approche cognitive du syndrome de Ganser. Revue Neurologique, 160 (4-C2). (Poster presented at the Société de Neuropsychologie de Langue Française, Caen, mai 2003.)



Seeing the phantom: BBC Radio 4 (All in the mind with Claudia Hammond, Radio Broadcast aired Monday 20 April 2009:

Other work featured in: New Scientist Dec 22, 2007; Sonntag Zeitung; Die Zeit; Dana Alliance; Tiede (Finnish science magazine; n°8, 2008); Le Temps (march 2010); La Tribune de Genève (march 2010)

Laboratory for cognitive and neurological sciences (LCNS) - Chemin du Musée 5 - 1700 Fribourg - Tel +41 26 300 8539 - Swiss University