What are false memories?

in #psychology3 years ago (edited)



False memories refer to situations in which we're having true memories about an event or situation that have never really occurred to us, that is, are partial or total distortion of our memories.

We are all susceptible to having false memories, this is a sign that our memories aren't an exact and literal copy of the past but depend on previously stored reconstructive processes and mental schemes.

The investigation of false witness memories is a very relevant issue today as it has been related to the reliability of people testimonies who have witnessed an event and must testify. It's very difficult to distinguish when a memory is true or false because the phenomenological characteristics associated with both cases are similar.

Both types of memories are associated with a great deal of detail and are stable over time. Suggestion could be one of the exogenous mechanisms involved in the generation of these false memories, although there would also be endogenous distortions generated by the very daily functioning of our memory.


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The trick is we don't know how to tell whether those memories are false or real, even if people are telling us they are false how can we believe them over us.

Right, we can't go into their minds to discern whether those memories are objectively true.

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