Wednesday, 4 July 2007

The flavor of memories.

Despite its movie-like clarity, my memory of J.F.K.'s assassination is almost certainly wrong in some details, and maybe even some significant ones.
That's because I'm not simply calling up the original memory laid down in November 1963. I'm recalling the last time I thought about it.
Each time we retrieve and re-store a memory, it can be subtly altered by all sorts of factors. What goes back into our brains is like the new version of a text document, overwriting the old...
Memory and emotion are intimately linked biochemically, with hormones like adrenaline actively involved in forming the neurological patterns we call memories. "Any kind of emotional experience will create a stronger memory than otherwise would be created," says James McGaugh, a neurobiologist at the University of California at Irvine. "We remember our embarrassments, our failures, our fender benders"....
Michael D. Lemonick
Time Magazine

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