Key to False Memories Uncovered

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friedrich braun
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Key to False Memories Uncovered

Postby friedrich braun » 1 decade 1 year ago (Tue Nov 13, 2007 10:35 pm)

This is of obvious interest to Revisionists who have studied the scientifically impossible witness accounts.

Duke University Medical Center neuroscientists say the places a memory is processed in the brain may determine how someone can be absolutely certain of a past event that never occurred.

These findings could help physicians better appreciate the memory changes that accompany normal aging or even lead to tools for the early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease, according to Duke neuroscientist Roberto Cabeza, Ph.D.

Information retrieved from memory is simultaneously processed in two specific regions of the brain, each of which focuses on a different aspect of an past event. The medial temporal lobe (MTL), located at the base of the brain, focuses on specific facts about the event. The frontal parietal network (FPN), located at the top of the brain, is more likely to process the global gist of the event.

The specific brain area accessed when one tries to remember something can ultimately determine whether or not we think the memory is true or false, the researchers found.

"Human memory is not like computer memory -- it isn't completely right all the time," said Cabeza, senior author of a paper appearing in the Journal of Neuroscience. "There are many occasions when people feel strongly about past events, even though they might not have occurred."

Cabeza wanted to understand why someone could have such strong feelings of confidence about false memories. In his experiments, he scanned the brains of healthy volunteers with functional MRI as they took well-established tests of memory and false memory. Functional MRI is an imaging technique that shows what areas of the brain are used during specific mental tasks.

During the brain scans, Cabeza found that volunteers who were highly confident in memories that were indeed true showed increased activity in the fact-oriented MTL region.

"This would make sense, because the MTL, with its wealth of specific details, would make the memory seem more vivid," Cabeza said. "For example, thinking about your breakfast this morning, you remember what you had, the taste of the food, the people you were with. The added richness of these details makes one more confident about the memory's truth."

On the other hand, volunteers who showed high confidence in memories that turned out to be false exhibited increased activity in the impressionistic FPN. The people drawing from this area of the brain recalled the gist or general idea of the event, and while they felt confident about their memories, they were often mistaken, since they could not recall the details of the memory.

These findings, coupled with the findings of other studies, can help explain what happens to the human brain as it ages, Cabeza said.

"Specific memories don't last forever, but what ends up lasting are not specific details, but more general or global impressions," Cabeza said. "Past studies have shown that as normal brains age, they tend to lose the ability to recollect specifics faster than they lose the ability recall impressions. However, patients with Alzheimer's disease tend to lose both types of memories equally, which may prove to be a tool for early diagnosis."

Cabeza's colleague for this research was Hongkeun Kim at Daegu University in South Korea. The research was supported by the National Institutes of Health and Daegu University.

Source: Duke University


http://www.physorg.com/news113671556.html
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Postby Laurentz Dahl » 1 decade 1 year ago (Wed Nov 14, 2007 12:33 am)

Very interesting.

Apropos false memories (and conscious lies turning into false memories) I have found some interesting quotes in a research journal entitled Memory, which I will post here later when time allows.

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Postby Hektor » 1 decade 1 year ago (Sat Nov 17, 2007 7:23 am)

Laurentz Dahl wrote:Very interesting.

Apropos false memories (and conscious lies turning into false memories) I have found some interesting quotes in a research journal entitled Memory, which I will post here later when time allows.

Here is another example:

Memories Of Wars Never Fought

A BLOCKBUSTER of a story launched a highly touted television program. But its central allegation was largely based on a disputed interviewing technique involving recovered memories that the American Psychiatric Association has condemned.

Recovered memories -- suppressed horrors dredged up under therapy -- drew attention a few years ago when they became the basis of a spate of charges of incest, satanic-ritual abuse and sexual abuse at child-care centers. They were discredited when investigators determined that many of them had been implanted by zealous therapists determined to find a cause for a patient's emotional distress.

More recently, experts have discovered that some Vietnam-era veterans under psychiatric care in Veterans Administration Hospitals are especially suggestible. Recovered memories have made a comeback, and veterans, they say, find themselves ''remembering'' events that never happened.

Some critics assert that may be the case in a disputed report alleging that American soldiers used nerve gas in the Vietnam War. According to ''Newsstand: CNN & Time,'' United States Special Forces troops used the gas, sarin, in 1970 while attacking a Laotian village that was presumed to be harboring American defectors. By using poison gas in the Vietnam War, American soldiers would have committed an act regarded internationally as a war crime. And in covering it up for 28 years, the Pentagon would be seen as damaging American efforts to expose and eliminate Iraq's suspected caches of nerve gas.

The report by the veteran CNN war correspondent Peter Arnett and a producer, April Oliver, who did most of the reporting, was broadcast June 7 and appeared the next day in Time magazine. As a result of the report, the Pentagon began an investigation.

Tear Gas, Not Sarin


But the air soon began hissing out of the story. Veterans who had taken part in the mission, called Operation Tailwind, bombarded the Internet and news media with furious rebuttals. Yes, they had used gas, they said -- nonlethal tear gas. CNN's own military analyst, the retired Air Force Maj. Gen. Perry Smith, resigned in protest when the network wouldn't retract the report.

In the meantime, Newsweek magazine dropped its own bomb. It revealed that a former Army lieutenant who had participated in the mission, Robert Van Buskirk, was the primary source for the nerve-gas allegation, and that he suddenly recalled the use of sarin only near the end of a five-hour interview with Ms. Oliver.

But Mr. Van Buskirk had failed to mention sarin in ''Tailwind'' (Word Books), his 1983 book about the mission. He said he had suppressed the memories when he experienced a religious awakening in 1974.

Neither the program nor the article mentioned that the central accusation was based on recovered memories.

General Smith said last week that several other veterans who had been interviewed for the report told him Ms. Oliver ''planted'' the notion that sarin had been used in the commando raid. CNN has denied that.

CNN said Friday that it had hired Floyd Abrams, the noted First Amendment lawyer, to review its reporting and declined further comment.

But experts in the field of false memories say it is not difficult to manipulate a susceptible subject, given the right conditions.

''Recovering a false memory as a war atrocity is not as unusual as you might think,'' said Pamela Freyd, the executive director of the False Memory Syndrome Foundation, a national organization of doctors and researchers that has worked to identify false memories....
http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.h ... A96E958260

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Postby Kiwichap » 1 decade 1 year ago (Sat Nov 17, 2007 6:26 pm)

Apropos false memories (and conscious lies turning into false memories)

Apparently, sometimes conscious lies do not turn into false memories fast enough for some folk. They need a little help along the way.

Dear Friends,
The posting about the Holocaust survivor story posed some interesting questions, and at the risk of incitement of the many historians who participate in this list, let me offer you our outlook on survivor testimonies. To us at AMCHA who help survivors record their stories--before,during, and after the Holocaust either in writing, video or audio, as they prefer, we are not looking for historical accuracy. We are interested in helping the survivor relate what he/she remembers. It is possible that there are some minor or major inaccuracies, exaggerations, or distortions. Whereas we do not analyze the testimonies, we feel that the important elements relate to what the survivor wants to convey through his story.
The student described may have read something as described, true or fictional, or may have imagined it,or actually interviewed a survivor who conveyed pieces of the (embellished) story. The question I would ask is what is the student, and perhaps the survivor trying to communicate. All the best for 5756,

John Lemberger,
Executive Director, AMCHA
National Israeli Center for Psyhcosocial Support of Survivors of the Holocaust
and the Second Generation
There was no holocaust.

Tit 1:14 Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth.

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Postby Hektor » 1 decade 1 year ago (Sun Nov 18, 2007 2:25 pm)

@Kiwichap
... Where exactly did you get this Lemberger letter from?
Can it be verified?

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Kiwichap
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Postby Kiwichap » 1 decade 1 year ago (Sun Nov 18, 2007 6:30 pm)

Here you go Hektor.
http://www.h-net.org/~holoweb/logs/Oct95.html

Quote:
Date: Tue, 3 Oct 1995 11:55:00 CDT
Reply-To: H-Net History of the Holocaust List <HOLOCAUS>
Sender: H-Net History of the Holocaust List <HOLOCAUS>
From: "Mott, Jim" <jimmott>
Subject: Re: Holocaust Survivor Story

From: Amcha <amcha>

Dear Friends,
The posting about the Holocaust survivor story posed some interesting questions, and at the risk of incitement of the many historians who participate in this list, let me offer you our outlook on survivor testimonies. To us at AMCHA who help survivors record their stories--before,during, and after the Holocaust either in writing, video or audio, as they prefer, we are not looking for historical accuracy. We are interested in helping the survivor relate what he/she remembers. It is possible that there are some minor or major inaccuracies, exaggerations, or distortions. Whereas we do not analyze the testimonies, we feel that the important elements relate to what the survivor wants to convey through his story.
The student described may have read something as described, true or fictional, or may have imagined it,or actually interviewed a survivor who conveyed pieces of the (embellished) story. The question I would ask is what is the student, and perhaps the survivor trying to communicate. All the best for 5756,
John Lemberger,
Executive Director, AMCHA
National Israeli Center for Psyhcosocial Support of Survivors of the Holocaust
and the Second Generation
There was no holocaust.



Tit 1:14 Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth.

Laurentz Dahl
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Postby Laurentz Dahl » 1 decade 1 year ago (Sun Nov 18, 2007 8:16 pm)

Some quotes from an article entitled "When a lie becomes the truth: The effects of self-generated misinformation on eyewitness memory" and written by Kevin L. Pickel, which appeared in Memory, 2004, Vol.12, No.1.

(...) most psychological research on eyewitness memory has been conducted under the assumption that witnesses usually try to provide factually correct accounts, and that the inaccuracies that sometimes occur are the result of honest mistakes, such as inadvertently incorporating misleading suggestions into the description of an event."
(p.14)

Numerous studies have shown that sometimes people confuse memories of imagination with memories of reality. Furthermore reality monitoring errors become more likely if the characteristics of an internally generated memory overlap greatly. For example, if the memory of an imagined event happens to contain many sensory details and/or much spatial, temporal and affective information, a person might believe that he or she actually experienced this event. Among the results illustrating reality monitoring errors is Johnson's, Foley and Leach's (1988) finding that participants who hear a confederate say some words and imagine that confederate saying other words may be unable to determine whether a particular word was actually heard or merely imagined. In another study, participant's estimates of the number of times they had seen a picture increased with the number of times that they had imagined the pcture, especially for participants who were classified as "good imaginers" (Johnson, Raye, Wang, & Taylor, 1979).

Other research shows that when adults imagine in detail childhood events that they initially said that they probably never experienced, their confidence that the events actually occured inflates (Gary, Manning, Loftus, & Sherman, 1996). Similarly, adults instructed to create mental images of fictitious childhood events sometimes eventually "remembered" these events (e.g. Hyman & Pentland, 1996; Porter, Yuille, & Lehman, 1999). Hyman and Pentland suggested that the process of imagining a false event may lead to the creation of plausible and vivid details connected with the event, which in turn increases the chance of a reality monitoring error.
(p.15)

A second possibility is that, if deceptive witnesses try hard to invent plausible, realistic (and probably perceptual) details that are consistent with other knowledge they have about the event, then these details may be easy to confuse with actual details. In other words, over time witnesses may become unsure which details they invented and which really happened, and they may even come to believe that some of the invented details are real, and vice versa. Such a result would be consistent with the reality monitoring framework and previous findings that people sometimes confuse real and imagined events (Johnson, et.al., 1988; Johnson, et.al., 1979)
(p.16)

The effects of fabrication that were seen in the present research could also be seen in actual forensic situations, where it is common for investigators to encounter deceptive witnesses (Fletcher, 1991). In fact, there are some reasons to expect that the effects might be even more pronounced in real-life settings. One reason is that real witnesses are often asked to repeat their story multiple times, and with each repetition the original, accurate details could become less accessible, as predicted by the retrieval blocking hypothesis. Also, unlike actual witnesses, those in the present study were given little opportunity to plan or practice their fabrications, which might have allowed them to visualize especially realistic details that would be more easily confused with the details they genuinely observed. Relatedly, witnesses involved in a real police investigation would surely be more motivated to seem believable, and therefore they might try harder to create plausible details.
(p.24-25)

It would surely also help the false witnesses if everyone believed everything they said as if it was gospel.

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Postby Hektor » 1 decade 1 year ago (Mon Nov 19, 2007 6:31 am)

@ Kiwichap
Thanks, Prof Lemberger has a nice way to say they are lying.

@ Laurentz
There are some other factors that make Holocaust lying testimony more likely:
- There are many similar stories
- No critique is allowed
- People dig these stories
- It is within ethnocentric interest
- You can make money with it


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