Mind: Section 3

Discussion Questions: Week 6 (November 3)

1. False memories vs. repressed memories (Red)

  • Is it possible to devise a method for systematically and accurately distinguishing false memories from repressed memories? If so, what would it look like? What features of (real vs. false) memory encoding, storage and retrieval might it take advantage of?

2. Knowing how vs. knowing that (Blue)

  • What does the fact that procedural memory ('knowing how') and declarative memory ('knowing that') are affected differently in (at least some) cases of amnesia (the former is retained; the latter is lost) imply about the way memory works --- encoding, storage and retrieval?
  • What are the broader implications of this distinction for the overall architecture of memory? Might we expect to find other 'modules' of memory (e.g., memories based on different sense inputs)?

3. Concept-based memory (Green)

  • Consider the hypothesis that memories are formed based on concepts, by matching an event/experience against a stored concept/category, and using the latter to encode the former.
    • How does this explain the emergence of false memories?
    • How do we reconcile this with the fact that we retain both details and gists, and in some cases only details? (The case of the woman who remembered only the place names of the 'War of the Ghosts' story is an example.)