The Memory Illusion

Author: Dr Julia Shaw
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 9781473535176
Release Date: 2016-06-16
Genre: Psychology

Think you have a good memory? Think again. Memories are our most cherished possessions. We rely on them every day of our lives. They make us who we are. And yet the truth is they are far from being the accurate record of the past we like to think they are. True, we can all admit to having suffered occasional memory lapses, such as entering a room and immediately forgetting why, or suddenly being unable to recall the name of someone we've met dozens of times. But what if our minds have the potential for more profound errors, that enable the manipulation or even outright fabrication of our memories? In The Memory Illusion, forensic psychologist and memory expert Dr Julia Shaw uses the latest research to show the astonishing variety of ways in which our brains can indeed be led astray. She shows why we can sometimes misappropriate other people's memories, subsequently believing them to be our own. She explains how police officers can imprison an innocent man for life on the basis of many denials and just one confession. She demonstrates the way radically false memories can be deliberately implanted, leading people to believe they had tea with Prince Charles, or committed crimes that never happened. And she reveals how, in spite of all this, we can improve our memory through simple awareness of its fallibility. Fascinating and unnerving in equal measure, The Memory Illusion offers a unique insight into the human brain, challenging you to question how much you can ever truly know about yourself.

The Memory Illusion

Author: Julia Shaw
Publisher: Doubleday Canada
ISBN: 9780385685306
Release Date: 2016-09-13
Genre: Psychology

Forensic psychologist and memory expert Dr. Julia Shaw reveals why we are all unreliable narrators of our own life stories. Think you have a good memory? Think again. Memories are our most cherished possessions. We rely on them every day of our lives. They make us who we are. And yet the truth is they are far from being the accurate record of the past we like to think they are. True, we can all admit to having suffered occasional memory lapses, such as entering a room and immediately forgetting why, or suddenly being unable to recall the name of someone we've met dozens of times. But what if we have the potential for more profound errors of memory, even verging on outright fabrication and self-deception? In The Memory Illusion, forensic psychologist and memory expert Dr. Julia Shaw uses the latest research to show the astonishing variety of ways in which our brains can indeed be led astray. She shows why we can sometimes misappropriate other people's memories, subsequently believing them to be our own. She explains how police officers can imprison an innocent man for life on the basis of 300 denials and just one confession. She demonstrates the way radically false memories can be deliberately implanted, leading people to believe that they brutally murdered a loved one, or were abducted by aliens. And she reveals how, in spite of all this, we can improve our memory through simple awareness of its fallibility. Fascinating and unnerving in equal measure, The Memory Illusion offers a unique insight into the human brain, challenging you to question how much you can ever truly know about yourself.

The Memory Illusion

Author: Julia Shaw
Publisher:
ISBN: 0385685297
Release Date: 2016-09-13
Genre: Brain

Forensic psychologist and memory expert Dr. Julia Shaw reveals why we are all unreliable narrators of our own life stories. Think you have a good memory? Think again. Memories are our most cherished possessions. We rely on them every day of our lives. They make us who we are. And yet the truth is they are far from being the accurate record of the past we like to think they are. True, we can all admit to having suffered occasional memory lapses, such as entering a room and immediately forgetting why, or suddenly being unable to recall the name of someone we've met dozens of times. But what if we have the potential for more profound errors of memory, even verging on outright fabrication and self-deception? In The Memory Illusion, forensic psychologist and memory expert Dr. Julia Shaw uses the latest research to show the astonishing variety of ways in which our brains can indeed be led astray. She shows why we can sometimes misappropriate other people's memories, subsequently believing them to be our own. She explains how police officers can imprison an innocent man for life on the basis of 300 denials and just one confession. She demonstrates the way radically false memories can be deliberately implanted, leading people to believe that they brutally murdered a loved one, or were abducted by aliens. And she reveals how, in spite of all this, we can improve our memory through simple awareness of its fallibility. Fascinating and unnerving in equal measure, The Memory Illusion offers a unique insight into the human brain, challenging you to question how much you can ever truly know about yourself.

Associative Illusions of Memory

Author: David Gallo
Publisher: Psychology Press
ISBN: 9781134606832
Release Date: 2013-05-13
Genre: Psychology

The last decade has seen a flurry of experimental research into the neurocognitive underpinnings of illusory memories. Using simple materials and tests (e.g., recalling words or pictures), methods such as the famed Deese-Roediger-McDermott (DRM) task have attracted considerable attention. These tasks elicit false memories of nonstudied events that are vivid, long lasting, and difficult to consciously avoid. Additional research shows that these memory illusions are fundamentally related to more complex memory distortions. As a result, this rapidly expanding literature has generated a great deal of excitement - and even some controversy - in contemporary psychology. Associative Illusions of Memory provides an ambitious overview of this research area. Starting with the historical roots and major theoretical trends, this book exhaustively reviews the most recent studies by cognitive psychologists, neuropsychologists, and cognitive neuroscientists. The strengths and limits of various experimental techniques are outlined, and the large body of existing data is meaningfully distilled into a few core theoretical concepts. This book highlights the malleability of memory, as well as the strategies and situations that can help us avoid false memories. Throughout the review, it is argued that these basic memory illusions contribute to a deeper understanding of how human memory works.

The Myth of Repressed Memory

Author: Dr. Elizabeth Loftus
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
ISBN: 9781466848863
Release Date: 2013-06-25
Genre: Psychology

According to many clinical psychologists, when the mind is forced to endure a horrifying experience, it has the ability to bury the entire memory of it so deeply within the unconscious that it can only be recalled in the form of a flashback triggered by a sight, a smell, or a sound. Indeed, therapists and lawyers have created an industry based on treating and litigating the cases of people who suddenly claim to have "recovered" memories of everything from child abuse to murder. This book reveals that despite decades of research, there is absolutely no controlled scientific support for the idea that memories of trauma are routinely banished into the unconscious and then reliably recovered years later. Since it is not actually a legitimate psychological phenomenon, the idea of "recovered memory"--and the movement that has developed alongside it--is thus closer to a dangerous fad or trendy witch hunt.

The Voices Within

Author: Charles Fernyhough
Publisher: Profile Books
ISBN: 9781782830788
Release Date: 2016-04-14
Genre: Psychology

We all hear voices. Ordinary thinking is often a kind of conversation, filling our heads with speech: the voices of reason, of memory, of self-encouragement and rebuke, the inner dialogue that helps us with tough decisions or complicated problems. For others - voice-hearers, trauma-sufferers and prophets - the voices seem to come from outside: friendly voices, malicious ones, the voice of God or the Devil, the muses of art and literature. In The Voices Within, Royal Society Prize shortlisted psychologist Charles Fernyhough draws on extensive original research and a wealth of cultural touchpoints to reveal the workings of our inner voices, and how those voices link to creativity and development. From Virginia Woolf to the modern Hearing Voices Movement, Fernyhough also transforms our understanding of voice-hearers past and present. Building on the latest theories, including the new 'dialogic thinking' model, and employing state-of-the-art neuroimaging and other ground-breaking research techniques, Fernyhough has written an authoritative and engaging guide to the voices in our heads.

Witness for the Defense

Author: Dr. Elizabeth Loftus
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
ISBN: 9781250086310
Release Date: 2015-06-02
Genre: Law

"The study of memory had become my specialty, my passion. In the next few years I wrote dozens of papers about how memory works and how it fails, but unlike most researchers studying memory, my work kept reaching out into the real world. To what extent, I wondered, could a person's memory be shaped by suggestion? When people witness a serious automobile accident, how accurate is their recollection of the facts? If a witness is questioned by a police officer, will the manner of questioning alter the representation of the memory? Can memories be supplemented with additional, false information?" The "passion" Loftus describes in the lines above led her to a teaching career at the University of Washington and, perhaps more importantly, into hundreds of courtrooms as an expert witness on the fallibility of eyewitness accounts. As she has explained in numerous trials, and as she convincingly argues in this absorbing book, eyewitness accounts can be and often are so distorted that they no longer resemble the truth.

Making Monsters

Author: Richard Ofshe
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520205839
Release Date: 1994
Genre: Law

In the last decade, reports of incest have exploded into the national consciousness. Magazines, talk shows, and mass market paperbacks have taken on the subject as many Americans, primarily women, have come forward with graphic memories of childhood abuse. Making Monsters examines the methods of therapists who treat patients for depression by working to draw out memories or, with the use of hypnosis, to encourage fantasies of childhood abuse the patients are told they have repressed. Since this therapy may leave the patient more depressed and alienated than before, questions are appropriately raised here about the ethics and efficacy of such treatment. In the last decade, reports of incest have exploded into the national consciousness. Magazines, talk shows, and mass market paperbacks have taken on the subject as many Americans, primarily women, have come forward with graphic memories of childhood abuse. Making Monsters examines the methods of therapists who treat patients for depression by working to draw out memories or, with the use of hypnosis, to encourage fantasies of childhood abuse the patients are told they have repressed. Since this therapy may leave the patient more depressed and alienated than before, questions are appropriately raised here about the ethics and efficacy of such treatment.

The Seven Sins of Memory

Author: Daniel L. Schacter
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
ISBN: 0547347456
Release Date: 2002-05-07
Genre: Psychology

A groundbreaking work by one of the world's foremost memory experts, THE SEVEN SINS OF MEMORY offers the first framework that explains common memory vices -- and their surprising virtues. In this intriguing study, Daniel L. Schacter explores the memory miscues that occur in everyday life: absent-mindedness, transience, blocking, misattribution, suggestibility, bias, and persistence. Schacter illustrates these concepts with vivid examples -- case studies, literary excerpts, experimental evidence, and accounts of highly visible news events such as the O.J. Simpson verdict, Bill Clinton's grand jury testimony, and the search for the Oklahoma City bomber. He also delves into striking new scientific research, giving us a glimpse of the fascinating neurology of memory. Together, the stories and the scientific results provide a new look at our brains and at what we more generally think of as our minds. Winner of the William James Book Award

Pieces of Light

Author: Charles Fernyhough
Publisher: Harper Collins
ISBN: 9780062237941
Release Date: 2013-03-19
Genre: Science

Shortlisted for the 2013 Royal Society Winton Prize for Science Books Leading psychologist Charles Fernyhough blends the most current science with literature and personal stories in Pieces of Light: How the New Science of Memory Illuminates the Stories We Tell About Our Pasts. A new consensus is emerging among cognitive scientists: rather than possessing fixed, unchanging memories, they have found that we create recollections anew each time we are called upon to remember. According to psychologist Charles Fernyhough, remembering is an act of narrative imagination as much as it is the product of a neurological process. An NPR and Psychology Today contributor, Dr. Fernyhough guides readers through the fascinating new science of autobiographical memory, covering topics such as: navigation, imagination, and the power of sense associations to cue remembering. Exquisitely written and meticulously researched, Pieces of Light brings together science and literature, the ordinary and the extraordinary, to help us better understand our powers of recall and our relationship with the past.

Remembering Trauma

Author: Richard J. McNally
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674018028
Release Date: 2005
Genre: Psychology

Are horrific experiences indelibly fixed in a victim's memory? Or does the mind protect itself by banishing traumatic memories from consciousness? How victims remember trauma is the most controversial issue in psychology today, spilling out of consulting rooms and laboratories to capture headlines, rupture families, provoke legislative change, and influence criminal trials and civil suits. This book, by a clinician who is also a laboratory researcher, is the first comprehensive, balanced analysis of the clinical and scientific evidence bearing on this issue--and the first to provide definitive answers to the urgent questions at the heart of the controversy. Synthesizing clinical case reports and the vast research literature on the effects of stress, suggestion, and trauma on memory, Richard McNally arrives at significant conclusions, first and foremost that traumatic experiences are indeed unforgettable. Though people sometimes do not think about disturbing experiences for long periods of time, traumatic events rarely slip from awareness for very long; furthermore, McNally reminds us, failure to think about traumas--such as early sexual abuse--must not be confused with amnesia or an inability to remember them. In fact, the evidence for repressed memories of trauma--or even for repression at all--is surprisingly weak. A magisterial work of scholarship, panoramic in scope and nonpartisan throughout, this unfailingly lucid work will prove indispensable to anyone seeking to understand how people remember trauma.

Why Torture Doesn t Work

Author: Shane O'Mara
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674743908
Release Date: 2015-11-30
Genre: Law

Besides being cruel and inhumane, torture does not work the way torturers assume it does. As Shane O’Mara’s account of the neuroscience of suffering reveals, extreme stress creates profound problems for memory, mood, and thinking, and sufferers predictably produce information that is deeply unreliable, or even counterproductive and dangerous.

NeuroLogic

Author: Eliezer Sternberg
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 9780307908780
Release Date: 2016-01-12
Genre: Medical

A groundbreaking investigation of the brain’s hidden logic behind our strangest behaviors, and of how conscious and unconscious systems interact in order to create our experience and preserve our sense of self. From bizarre dreams and hallucinations to schizophrenia and multiple personalities, the human brain is responsible for a diverse spectrum of strange thoughts and behaviors. When observed from the outside, these phenomena are often written off as being just “crazy,” but what if they were actually planned and logical? NeuroLogic explores the brain’s internal system of reasoning, from its unconscious depths to conscious decision making, and illuminates how it explains our most outlandish as well as our most stereotyped behaviors. From sleepwalking murderers, contagious yawning, and the brains of sports fans to false memories, subliminal messages, and the secret of ticklishness, Dr. Eliezer Sternberg shows that there are patterns to the way the brain interprets the world—–patterns that fit the brain’s unique logic. Unraveling these patterns and the various ways they can be disturbed will not only alter our view of mental illness and supernatural experience, but will also shed light on the hidden parts of ourselves. (With black-and-white illustrations throughout.) From the Hardcover edition.

The Idiot Brain

Author: Dean Burnett
Publisher: Guardian Faber Publishing
ISBN: 9781783350834
Release Date: 2016-02-16
Genre: Science

Why do you lose arguments with people who know MUCH LESS than you? Why can you recognise that woman, from that thing... but can't remember her name? And why, after your last break-up, did you find yourself in the foetal position on the sofa for days, moving only to wipe the snot and tears haphazardly from your face? Here's why: the idiot brain. For something supposedly so brilliant and evolutionarily advanced, the human brain is pretty messy, fallible and disorganised. For example, did you know that your memory is egotistical? That conspiracy theories and superstitions are the inevitable effects of a healthy brain? Or that alcohol can actually improve your memory?** In The Idiot Brain, neuroscientist Dean Burnett tours our mysterious and mischievous grey (and white) matter. Along the way he explains the human brain's imperfections in all their glory and how these influence everything we say, do and experience. Expertly researched and entertainingly written, this book is for anyone who has wondered why their brain appears to be sabotaging their life, and what on earth it is really up to. **Editor's note: please read the book before testing this conclusion.

The Neurobiology of the Prefrontal Cortex

Author: Richard E. Passingham
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 9780191633096
Release Date: 2012-07-12
Genre: Medical

The prefrontal cortex makes up almost a quarter of the human brain, and it expanded dramatically during primate evolution. The Neurobiology of the Prefrontal Cortex presents a new theory about its fundamental function. In this important new book, the authors argue that primate-specific parts of the prefrontal cortex evolved to reduce errors in foraging choices, so that particular ancestors of modern humans could overcome periodic food shortages. These developments laid the foundation for working out problems in our imagination, which resulted in the insights that allow humans to avoid errors entirely, at least at times. In the book, the authors detail which parts of the prefrontal cortex evolved exclusively in primates, how its connections explain why the prefrontal cortex alone can perform its function, and why other parts of the brain cannot do what the prefrontal cortex does. Based on an analysis of its evolutionary history, the book uses evidence from lesion, imaging, and cell-recording experiments to argue that the primate prefrontal cortex generates goals from a current behavioural context and that it can do so on the basis of single events. As a result, the prefrontal cortex uses the attentive control of behaviour to augment an older general-purpose learning system, one that evolved very early in the history of animals. This older system learns slowly and cumulatively over many experiences based on reinforcement. The authors argue that a new learning system evolved in primates at a particular time and place in their history, that it did so to decrease the errors inherent in the older learning system, and that severe volatility of food resources provided the driving force for these developments. Written by two leading brain scientists, The Neurobiology of the Prefrontal Cortex is an important contribution to our understanding of the evolution and functioning of the human brain.