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PSYC 221 (51)
Chapter 8

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Queen's University
PSYC 221
Yaroslav Konar

Page 204233 29 pages Page 1 of 9Chapter 8 Everyday MemoryMemory Errors AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL MEMORY IN MY LIFEAJ can remember what happened on each day of her life from the age of 11 onwards whenever triggered by a date she automatically travels back to that day in her mind to remember where she was what she was doing etc It occurs nonstop and is automaticuncontrollable and exhaustingAutobiographical Memory Recollected events that belong to a persons past often accessed through mental time travel to place oneself back into a specific situation oAJs exceptional autobiographical memory is unique with other memory savants typically performing memory feats such as remembering pi with tricks such as chunking and creating visual imagery AM can involve both episodic memory for events in our lives and semantic memories of facts about our lives eg childhood birthday party memory includes images of the cake and people at the party but also knowledge about when the party occurred and where your family was living at the timeMemories of recent events are dominated by episodic memory but this fades with time such that more distant events become more semanticThe Multidimensional Nature of Autobiographical MemoryAM are multidimensional consisting of spatial emotional and sensory components GreenbergRubin 2003 Patients who have lost their ability to visually recognize objects due to damage to the visual cortex also experience a loss of AM Due to lack of visual stimuli to serve as retrieval cues and in general due to importance of visual experience in forming AMCabeza 2004 Measured brain activation caused by two sets of stimulus photographs one the participants took themselves autobiographical and one taken by someone else laboratory Subjects told to take pictures of specified campus locations then shown their own Aphotos as well as the Lphotos A few days later they saw their own photos previouslyviewed Lphotos or new Lphotos subjects must indicate which category a photo fell into while in an MRI scannerBoth A and Lphotos activated structures associated with episodic memory such as medial temporal lobe but Aphotos also activated regions of the hippocampus involved in processing informationeliciting memories associated with taking the pictureabout the self in mental time travel Memory over the Life SpanEvents that become significant parts of a persons life tend to be remembered well such as personal milestones and highly emotional events Transition points also tend to be particularly memorableReminiscence Bump Enhanced memory for events experienced in adolescence and young childhood between ages 10 and 30 years for individuals over 40 1 SelfImage Hypothesis Rathbone Memory enhanced for events that occur as a persons selfimage or life identity is being formed Experiment where subjects age 54 creates I am statements that they felt defined them as a person eg I am a mother and asked when each statement had become a significant part of their identity average age assigned was 25 years within the span of the reminiscence bump
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