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Memory Constructions and the Brain.docx

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PSYC 1000
Anneke Olthof

Memory Constructions and the Brain Memory as a Constructive Process •We do not use the rewind button to activate memories •Memory is a constructive process ➡ Memories are imagined, selected, changed, and rebuilt ➡ Memories are altered every time we recall them ➡ Memories are altered again when we reconsolidate the memory • Use working memory to send them back into long-term memory ➡ Later information alters earlier memories •The misinformation effect ➡ The distortion of memory by misleading post-event information •Implanted memories ➡ Simply picturing an event can make it seem like a real memory When we have an inaccurate memory, we tend to add extra imagined details ➡ ➡ Visualizing and actually seeing an event actuate similar brain areas, which means that we can't tell how real a memory is by how real it feels •Recovered memories of abuse ➡ Abuse memories are more likely to be “burned in” memory than forgotten ➡ Accidental reminders can activate a forgotten memory for minor events ➡ actively searching for memories can create detailed memories that feel very real ➡ True repressed memories or recovered memories may be rare but unreported memories of abuse are very common ➡ There is no clear way to tell when someone has actually have been abused ➡ An implanted, constructed memory can be just as troubling as a memory from a direct experience The Biology of Memory •The brain is not like a hard drive ➡ Memories are not in isolated files The storage capacity does not get full ➡ ➡ Memory is stored throughout the brain •Where in the brain are memories formed? ➡ Three basic approaches • Human lesion studies ➡ Study memory loss due to brain damage • Nonhuman Animal Lesion Studie
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