Friday, April 11, 2008

Loftus: Memory Faults and Fixes

This article basically follows on what we read in class for "Article 1." Analyzing memories and planting false memories have come to be of great importance. One example of how important memories are in life is witness testimony in court or in a police station. There are several people over the years before DNA testing took place that were sent to jail wrongfully due to the testimony of someone fingered them as the culprit of some act. One example of that that Elizabeth Loftus gave was "Larry Mayes of Indiana, now 52 years old, spent 21 years in prison for a rape of a gas station cashier. The victim had failed to identify him in two separate lineups and picked him out only after she was hypnotized by police. Mayes’ story is a common one; analyses of these DNA exoneration cases reveal that faulty eyewitness memory is the major cause of wrongful convictions." As I commented in someone else's post, I don't think there will ever be a way to identify false memories from real ones. Even lie detector tests don't always work. There are just some things in life that can't be fixed. Once something is in your head, only you can control it. And sometimes not even you can save you from you.

1 comment:

Amanda said...

You commented that on my post by the way, and I agree with you to some extent on the fact that we may never be able to differentiate between real and false memories. I feel, however that with technology and the way the world is advancing, it may be possible some day to distinguish the memories from each other.