Messing with Your Mind

"...we cannot separate our memories of the ongoing events of our lives from what has happened to us previously. Imagine that for a set period of time, two people were tied together so that each could witness only what the other saw, read only what the other read, learn only what the other learned, and have only the emotional experiences that the other experienced. Unless these two people were identical personalities with identical pasts, their memories of the time period could be vastly different. What has happened to us in the past determines what we take out of our daily encounters in life; memories are records of how we have experienced events, not replicas of the events themselves. Experiences are encoded by brain networks whose connections have already been shaped by previous encounters with the world. This preexisting knowledge powerfully influences how we encode and store new memories, thus contributing to the nature, texture, and quality of what we will recall of the moment."
Schacter, Daniel L. Searching for Memory

Baddeley, Alan. Your Memory: A User's Guide. London, England: PRION (an imprint of Multimedia Books Limited), 1993. A popular book by a memory researcher. Includes many activities you can try and tips for improving your memory.

Conway, Martin. Flashbulb Memories. Hove, United Kingdom: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Publishers, 1995. A detailed technical discussion of recent research into flashbulb memories, the memories of a single significant event, such as the assasination of John F. Kennedy.

Loftus, Dr. Elizabeth and Katherine Ketcham. The Myth of Repressed Memory: False Memories and Allegations of Sexual Abuse. New York, NY: St. Martin's Press, 1994. In this very readable book, psychologist Elizabeth Loftus describes current research (including her own) related to the malleability of memory and relates this to the on-going legal discussion of repressed memory. Fascinating and disturbing reading.

Neisser, Ulric (editor). Memory Observed: Remembering in Natural Contexts. San Francisco, CA: W.H.Freeman and Company, 1982. A collection of articles that consider how memory operates in ordinary human experience.

Neisser, Ulric and Eugene Winograd (editors). Remembering reconsidered: Ecological and traditional approaches to the study of memory. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 1988. Following on Memory Observed, this collection of papers presents more recent finding in everyday memory.

Schacter, Daniel L. Searching for Memory. New York, NY: Basic Books (A Division of HarperCollins Publishers), 1996. Memory researcher Daniel Schacter presents a fascinating survey of current memory research and its implications.

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