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Margaret

Alameda, CA, United States | Member Since 2008

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  • Pieces of Light: How the New Science of Memory Illuminates the Stories We Tell About Our Pasts

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Charles Fernyhough
    • Narrated By Gildart Jackson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (25)
    Performance
    (23)
    Story
    (20)

    How is it possible to have vivid memories of something that never happened? How can siblings remember the same event from their childhoods so differently? Do the selections and distortions of memory reveal a truth about the self? Why are certain memories tied to specific places? Does your memory really get worse as you get older? A new consensus is emerging among cognitive scientists: Rather than possessing fixed, unchanging memories, we create recollections anew each time we are called upon to remember.

    Kathi says: "Challenges all you thought you knew about memory!"
    "My ulterior motive"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I admit, I read this book with an ulterior motive. I have kind of a "self help" interest in memory and its quirks. I have this idea that if I can polish up my past (and I don't see why not, I'm the keeper of it, after all) then it should - in countless subconscious ways - improve my present.

    This book gives my ulterior motive hope because, as the book explains, memory is really a confabulation of past experiences, stories and present hopes and attitudes - not an unchanging video of the mind. Charles Fernyhough combines the latest and greatest of memory research with personal stories (like how he's attempting to give his children vivid memories of his father, who died before they were born.) He covers common memory glitches - like how siblings remember the same event, but happening to different people.

    (I have this situation with my sister. I cut my finger on a peanut butter can - yes, peanut butter used to come in cans - and had to get stitches. She remembers the incident as well, but thinks it was her finger that was cut. The weird thing is that we both have a scar on that finger.)

    I don't know if this book will grip those without personal gain in the back of their minds, but I enjoyed it. Recommend.

    13 of 14 people found this review helpful

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