Memories Are Made of This: How Memory Works in Humans and Animals

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Columbia University Press, 2003 - Medical - 208 pages
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Memory enables us to make experience meaningful and to form coherent identities for ourselves and intelligible perceptions of others. Indeed, our ability to imagine, anticipate, and create the future is directly commensurate with our ability to retrieve and recollect past experiences.

But for all its vital importance in human cognition, for all that it seems so ordinary and obvious, memory remains in many ways as complex and mysterious today as it seemed to ancient philosophers. We need only to think about the "tip-of-the-tongue" experience to wonder how memories are formed, where they reside in our brains, and why some are retained, while others are forgotten. What is the difference between long- and short-term memory? Can memory be strengthened? Memories Are Made of This is an account of current memory science that offers answers to these and a host of other questions, comprehensively distilling much diverse and

rigorous science. It delves into the biology of memory functions and researches into the

mechanics and genetics of memory and the importance of emotions, particularly those resulting from trauma, in the memory process. Of special focus are investigations of cognition in other species. Are we the only animals who remember and forget? If not, are there commonalties in the memories of different species? The book also surveys our understanding of the effects of injury and disease on memory and concludes with an assessment of emerging pharmacological efforts to preserve and protect our memories and, in turn, ourselves.

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Review: Memories Are Made of This: How Memory Works in Humans and Animals

User Review  - Aaron Jolivet - Goodreads

An accessible and concise introduction to the topic. It was, for me, largely review but I found I enjoyed all the same probably because of the engaging tone and because the material is inherently ... Read full review

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About the author (2003)

Edward D. berkowitz is professor of history and public policy and public administration at George Washington University. He is the author of eight books and the editor of three collections. During the seventies he served as a staff member of the President's Commission for a National Agenda, helping President Carter plan for a second term that never came to be.

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