Sunday, 4 February 2007

A study of memory looks at fact and fiction.

The beautiful and deeply religious Madame de Tourvel is so distraught after cheating on her husband in the 1782 novel “Les Liaisons Dangereuses” that she blacks out the betrayal altogether, arriving at a convent with no idea of what had brought her there. Soon the horror of the infidelity rushes back, in all its incriminating force.
More than two centuries later, she has become part of a longstanding debate about whether the brain can block access to painful memories, like betrayals and childhood sexual abuse, and suddenly release them later on....
Benedict Carey in The New York Times
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