False Memories

A lot of work has been done on research into memory – and, in particular, how malleable it can prove to be – since the challenge that developed in the 1990’s to the idea of “recovered memories”; traumatic memories that had apparently lain dormant in certain individuals until they were recovered through psychotherapy.

Elizabeth Loftus’ pioneering work (outlined in the Shortcuts video “False Memory – available as a digital download – did much to dispel the myths surrounding false memories and, more recently, a range of studies have been carried-out to test the idea put-forward by Loftus that completely false memories can be implanted in a range of different subjects.

To get a flavour for this research two interesting studies are worth looking at – the first deals with the ease with which false memories can be planted and the second questions the extent to which some of our memories may be fake.

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