Presentation on theme: "Constructing Fake Memories and Forgetting Real Ones."— Presentation transcript:
Constructing Fake Memories and Forgetting Real Ones
Forgetting and Distortions of Memory In the 80’s and 90’s “recovered memories” were big headlines. Individuals of all ages were claiming to suddenly remember events that had been “repressed” and forgotten for years. Often these memories were of abuse. Sometimes these recovered memories were corroborated with physical evidence and justice was served. constructed memoriesOther times they were discovered to be fabricated or constructed memories
Constructed memory A memory or recollection of an event that is false or contains false details that never actually occurred reconstruction –Theory that holds that memory is not a replica of the past but a representation, or reconstruction, of the past –Reconstruction can lead to distorted memories of events and experiences
Elizabeth Loftus Famous Memory researcher showed that leading questions can easily influence us to recall false details questioners can create entirely new memory by repeatedly asking leading questions Especially true in children
Why Do We Forget?? It is inevitable we all will forget things…but why and how much? Retention –The proportion of learned information that is retained or remembered –The flip side of forgetting
Forgetting as an Encoding Failure Forgetting is often a problem with how information was encoded You sometimes haven’t forgotten information The information was actually never encoded in your memory or not encoded at a deep enough level The information was actually never encoded in your memory or not encoded at a deep enough level It never has a chance to enter our LTM. It never has a chance to enter our LTM. Sometimes called pseudoforgetting Sometimes called pseudoforgetting
Forgetting as a Storage Failure Memories, even saved ones, can decay over time –Decay Theory Memories just go away over timeMemories just go away over time –Without rehearsal, we forget thing over time. Hermann Ebbinghaus and his Forgetting CurveHermann Ebbinghaus and his Forgetting Curve –Said as time passes by information is forgotten gradually –Actually spent time plotting this on a graph –Example – remembering new vocab. words and forgetting more as time goes by –Example – first day forget very few, but forgetting speeds up over time
Forgetting as a Retrieval Failure It’s in there but you can not get it out –Tip-of-the-tongue Phenomenon Forgotten information feels like it is just out of reach InterferenceInterference –One memory gets in the way of another Two Kinds of Interference –Proactive Interference –Retroactive Interference
Proactive Interference Earlier memories interfere with new onesEarlier memories interfere with new ones –Remembering earlier addresses while having a hard time remembering your new one If you call your new girlfriend your old girlfriend’s name.
Retroactive Interference New memories reduce ability to retrieve older memories Remembering new sport champs and forgetting older ones – or forgetting your old phone number when you get a new one When you finally remember this years locker combination, you forget last years.
Other Reasons We May Forget Motivated Forgetting –Forgetting can sometimes provide a protection from painful memories –Repression Psychogenic Amnesia The process of moving anxiety producing memories to the unconscious – Freud Physical Injury or Trauma –Anterograde Amnesia after an injuryThe inability to remember events that occur after an injury or traumatic event –Retrograde Amnesia before an injuryThe inability to remember events that occurred before an injury or traumatic event
Other Reasons We Forget Distortions of Memory –We sometimes construct memories that did not happen or distort the ones that we do have –Misinformation Effect Incorporating misleading information of an event into one’s memory Possible planted memories Example – sometimes used by lawyers – Law and Order Clip –Children’s Recall Very open to misinformation effect Often provide memories they think an adult expects to hear or when asked very leading questions Can be a problem when testifying against an accused or falsely accused person
Other Reasons We May Forget Source Amnesia –Having to remember at the time of recall where memories came from –“did I read that in the Post or NY Times?” –It is also common for people to mix up fictional information from novels and movies with factual information from news and personal experiences Cryptomnesia –Inadvertent plagiarism that occurs when people come up with an idea that they think is original when they were actually exposed to it earlier Confabulation –is the confusion of imagination with memory, and/or the confusion of true memories with false memories –Trying to fill in the blanks of something you are trying to remember with false memories
Deja Vu Usually translated as already lived or already felt Usually translated as already lived or already felt the experience of feeling sure that one has witnessed or experienced a new situation previously the experience of feeling sure that one has witnessed or experienced a new situation previously Possible explanations Possible explanations An anomaly of memory An anomaly of memory an overlap between the short-term memory (events which are perceived as being in the present) and the long-term memory (events which are perceived as being in the past) an overlap between the short-term memory (events which are perceived as being in the present) and the long-term memory (events which are perceived as being in the past)short-term memory long-term memoryshort-term memory long-term memory Neural misfiring Neural misfiring Two neurons firing from different sources, thus coming up with two sensations (of the same stimulus) each seeming like a different event at a different time Two neurons firing from different sources, thus coming up with two sensations (of the same stimulus) each seeming like a different event at a different time