Memories of the way we were

December 31, 2010 at 10:15 am Leave a comment

Memory is fallible.  This we all should know (better).

I need to read –

Memory: histories, theories, debate eds Susannah Radstone and Bill Schwarz

What’s the inspiration for this post?  Well, I was in conversation with my father, who has lived in South Australia for 40 years. My personal recollection was that the death toll on the roads used to be significantly higher – in the 250s – than it is now. He disagreed.  A few days later I tracked down the stats and it turns out that – in this particular instance – my recollection was correct.  [It peaked in 1986 at 288 and this year is just over 100]. Perhaps because I’ve been away for so long, and haven’t had a ‘gradual decline’ to hide the longer memory? Or because I am a morbid bastard?

But the danger here, based on one isolated and provable instance, is to start thinking that my memory is something special. Which is very unlikely!

Stats from this useful chapter.

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Entry filed under: Memory.

Looking deep inside might tell you little… Carlin, on palimpsestic brains

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