Remembering the Personal Past

Remembering the Personal Past : Descriptions of Autobiographical Memory

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The impetus for this book is the belief that a comprehensive description of autobiographical memory in both form and function must be an eclectic, interdisciplinary endeavour. Unlike cognitive and experimental psychologists, who have conducted most of their work in laboratories and have been concerned with rote memory tasks, Ross looks at motivation and emotion as components of human memory and assembles a diverse body of sources that have heretofore been ignored by psychologists in their study of memory. He organizes his discussions along three lines of inquiry: (1) the subjective or experimental dimension of autobiographical memory, (2) the early development and later recall of childhood memories, and (3) social, historical, and folkloric perspectives on autobiographical retention. Rich and original scope, this work calls on the names of James, Titchener, Freud, Piaget, Baldwin, Janet, Proust, Sartre, Bergson, Russell, Strauss, and Merleau-Ponty, among others, to broaden our current understanding of the experience of autobiographical memory.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 256 pages
  • 162.8 x 245.1 x 25.1mm | 622.06g
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • New
  • 0195068947
  • 9780195068948

Table of contents

Introduction; Memory observed by introspection; Freud's theory of memory; Additional Freudian memory concepts; Psychoanalytic continuations; Some psychoanalytic offshoots: summarizing trends; Developmental memory theories; Sociological and historical perspectives; Memory transmission and cultivation; Conclusions and possibilities; Index.
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Review quote

The strength of the book derives from Ross's scholarly ability to bring to light ideas and observations concerning autobiographical memory from sources that are little known to many contemporary psychologists, and to integrate them with the observations of more familiar figures from the past. Ross is to be commended for rounding out the historical picture ... a wide-ranging scholarly discussion of the issue that makes effective use of historical material to inform
contemporary discussion ... Ross should be commended for his concern with the ideas of the past and his ability to discuss them in the content of contemporary concerns ... a significant contribution to scholarship on the history of ideas concerning autobiographical memory ... Ross's efforts are worthy
of serious attention from students of memory and history. * Daniel L. Schacter, Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences, Volume 29, October 1993 * Bruce Ross's book represents an excellent review of psychoanalytic approaches to memory and reminds us of the problems of meaning which the student of human memory must eventually confront. ...Freud's legacy - an emphasis on the central roles of language and memory in the experience of our own selves, autobiographies, motives, and, ultimately, personal meaning - is well represented in Ross's book, which will make illuminating reading for any serious student of human
memory. * Times Higher Education Supplement *
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