MIT 2000 First Lecture

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Published on 15 Nov 2011
School
Western University
Department
Media, Information and Technoculture
Course
Media, Information and Technoculture 2000F/G
Lecture One: September 13, 2011
Memory
-“Memory Palace”
-We’re better at memorizing things visually and spatially.
-Visualize a room and situate the things you want to remember inside (childhood
homes, interesting places you’ve been)
-Doesn’t have to be a room, can be body parts…
Memory: Spatial, Visual
-The more bizarre, funnier the image is, the more likely you’ll remember it.
-We can memorize a terrain better because of our ancestors who had to know where they were
and where things are.
-Good capacity to memorize faces as opposed to other things
Epic Poems of Rajasthan
-Bhapas: person who lives in Rajasthan in India. Society was not changed by colonial people
-Epic poems that are thousands of stanzas long were committed to memory by the bhapas.
-Poems weren’t written down until 1870’s.
-Boys who were taught to read and write were less able to memorize the stanzas.
Oral Society
-Power of spoken word in these societies (illiterate societies)
-No record of anything. Like events - they happen, then they’re gone.
-Interlocutor: sustained thought linked to communication. Someone has to speak in order for
knowledge to be created.
-Aspects or oral tradition exist in a society like ours (in court, everything is spoken)
Recall
-Mnemonics and formulas
-Something to aid the memory (rhyming, visualizations with pictures)
-Serious thought had to be memorized and transferred down generations
-You know what you can recall
Oral Traditions
-Rich in metaphor, multi-sensory, non linear creative thought, Homer
-The Iliad/Odyssey were initially recited by memory. Homer was illiterate
Oral Society
-Middle aged texts were rhymed. Meant to be memorized.
-Today we have much less need of memorization
-Memorization was at the core of society, well being
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Document Summary

We"re better at memorizing things visually and spatially. Visualize a room and situate the things you want to remember inside (childhood homes, interesting places you"ve been) Doesn"t have to be a room, can be body parts . The more bizarre, funnier the image is, the more likely you"ll remember it. We can memorize a terrain better because of our ancestors who had to know where they were and where things are. Good capacity to memorize faces as opposed to other things. Bhapas: person who lives in rajasthan in india. Epic poems that are thousands of stanzas long were committed to memory by the bhapas. Boys who were taught to read and write were less able to memorize the stanzas. Power of spoken word in these societies (illiterate societies) Like events - they happen, then they"re gone. Someone has to speak in order for knowledge to be created.

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