Elizabeth Loftus is known to be a prolific scientific figure, whose work on human memory has been greatly appreciated, as it shows us how the mind works by automatically altering memories, so that sometimes we cannot fully trust our memories when mixed with other mental processes. .
In this article you will find a selection of the best quotes from Elizabeth Loftus on the human being and mental processes.
Elizabeth Loftus’ Most Memorable Quotes
Being a pioneer in this field of psychology, the reflections of Elizabeth Loftus are very interesting to better understand the human mind. Let’s see the most notable of this author.
1. Just because someone thinks they remember something in detail, with confidence and emotion, does not mean that it actually happened.
Explain how the mind can trick us with our memories.
2. In the past, the future can be conditioned.
The past has the capacity to influence the future.
3. False memories also have these characteristics.
False memories can seem very real.
4. To be careful, one should not have great confidence as an absolute guarantee of anything.
The truth is never absolute, there is a large gray scale.
5. Memory works like a Wikipedia page: you can go there and edit it, but other people can too.
An interesting way to explain how memory works.
6. “False memory” is a phrase that refers to a variety of memory errors.
They work to create a filling between the memory gaps.
7. When we remember something, we take fragments of experience, sometimes at different times and places, and put them together to build what may seem like a memory, but is actually a construct.
It all depends on our experiences.
8. If they make you believe that as a child you got sick while taking something, you won’t want it.
The manipulative power of imposed beliefs.
9. Therapists probably cannot do this ethically and may have anti-cheating provisions in their standards of conduct. But bad governments, bad people, have no requirements for conduct.
Talk about how people benefit from mind manipulation.
10. In real life, as well as in experience, people may come to believe things that never happened.
It’s all a matter of convincing the person.
11. Some mistakes are “small”, such as poorly remembering words in a list that does not contain those words. Some mistakes are major, such as poorly remembering details of a past event. Some mistakes are even more serious, like remembering whole dramatic events that never really happened.
Everyone builds their own mental mistakes based on their experiences.
12. If I have learned anything, it is because someone remembers something in detail and tells you about it with emotion, it does not mean that it really happened.
Therefore, we must base ourselves on the facts that support them.
13. When we recently published a study on sowing false memories among American soldiers, I was concerned that we were presenting a recipe for doing horrible things to someone and then erasing their memory.
A truth that can be used in a negative way.
14. If we stick to the errors of autobiographical memory, these can also occur in different ways.
This is due to the fact in childhood, mental processes are linked to the imagination.
15. Even though it’s going to be a hurtful memory, they don’t want to let it go. (This is) the reason I sometimes get so much stamina in the work that I do. Because you tell people that their minds can be filled with a lot more fiction than they realize. And people don’t like it.
The mind works in a special way to block pain.
16. There are probably different processes that lead us to develop different types of memory errors.
The perception of our life can greatly influence it.
17. We all have malleable memories that can be contaminated or supplemented in some way.
No one escapes this rule of mind.
18. I am a psychologist. I am a cognitive psychologist and I study human memory. I specialized in the field of false memories.
Speaking of his profession and the area of psychology he focused on, cognitive psychology.
19. Memory, like freedom, is fragile.
Memory is not always reliable, as this researcher demonstrated with her experiments.
20. It is possible not to think about something for a long time, even something unpleasant that has happened to you. But what has been asserted in these cases of repressed memory is something, by definition, that is too extreme to be explained by ordinary forgetting and remembering.
A traumatic event can be locked in so that you never feel the same pain again.
21. The results were clear: the new environment prevented recognition.
The environment we live in also contributes to the way we remember.
22. Sometimes people don’t know what happened and just guess, but they are wrong.
A perfect example of how we fill the information gap.
23. There are individuals who have extraordinary memories of almost everything that has happened to them during their adulthood. My colleagues who study them call them people with very superior autobiographical memories.
People who are the exception in Elizabeth’s studies.
24. I say I’m studying memory, but then they immediately want to tell me about a parent who had Alzheimer’s disease, and I explain no, that’s not it.
Something that often happens when strangers know about your work.
25. They say that in order to move forward in life, you have to hide this memory, because it would be too painful to live with it. Then finally you go into therapy and break down the barrier of repression and that pristine memory comes out. But there is really no credible scientific support for this notion.
Disagreement on the process of recovering repressed memories.
26. What would you prefer to have? A child suffering from obesity, heart problems, a short life, diabetes or maybe a little false memory?
An interesting approach that puts us before a decision about life.
27. People can create their own mental images of the past and then believe that those mental images reflect real experiences when they do not.
The way we can “create” our experiences.
28. I study people who remember things that didn’t happen, not people who can’t remember.
Clarify the specific case of your study.
29. Even if we educate people and warn them about memory distortion, they will remain vulnerable.
It can even be an unconscious process.
30. Fake news will help people remember things that never happened.
Warning about fake news that spreads in different news channels.
31. If someone says they haven’t thought about it for years and someone else reminded them of a similar experience, it can happen. But I wouldn’t call it repression.
For Elisabeth, repressed memories don’t exist.
32. Maybe it helps us live happier lives and feel better about ourselves.
One of the possible reasons for these false memories.
33. Our lives are made up of memories.
They are part of our identity.
34. We have seen that memories could be implanted which would be traumatic if they had actually occurred, such as being attacked by an animal or having an accident.
Even such shocking things can be built in the mind.
35. The consciousness calling process can change it, and now you are storing something different. We all do this, for example, by inadvertently adopting a story we’ve heard.
How information changes in our brain.
36. My job has made me tolerant of memory errors on the part of my family and friends.
It’s not always done on purpose, but it’s a spontaneous response.
37. Our malleable memory and our propensity to develop false memories have implications for who we are and how we feel about ourselves.
Some insecurities can be fabricated by our imagination.
38. You don’t have to call them lies. I think we could be generous and say that maybe it is a false memory.
One way to provide a coherent response to a lack of information.
39. Giving people the wrong details can change how you remember about past events. This phenomenon is known as the disinformation effect.
The term for this type of manipulation.
40. The problem is clear: the unreliability of eyewitness identification evidence is one of the most serious problems in the administration of criminal justice and civil litigation.
That is why justice demands as much proof of the fact as possible.
41. So we remember that we had better grades in school than us, that we voted in elections where we did not vote, that our children walked and talked at a younger age than we did. ‘they actually did.
The subtle yet shocking way it affects reality.
42. False memories, like real ones, can be described in detail, expressed with confidence, informed with emotion.
They have the same ability to persuade.
43. Some spontaneous memory distortions are common.
It sure happened to you too.
44. Without independent corroboration, it is very difficult to know for sure whether something is an authentic memory or the result of imagination, dreams, or some other experience.
It’s not enough to trust our memories, there are more variables involved.
45. These natural distortions probably make us feel better about ourselves. They reveal that memory has a “superiority complex”.
Maybe that’s a way of always finding comfort.
46. If we make people believe that before the age of 16 they got sick from drinking vodka, they don’t want to drink that much vodka.
An example of the impact of conviction.
47. Would it be possible to cultivate this technology and implant false memories that help to live happier and healthier lives? The idea is scary. Someone could abuse it.
A possibility that could be present in the future.
48. We do it alone.
We don’t need to have an outside influence to change our memories.
49. External suggestion can lead to false memories of traumatic childhood events, and these can be life changing. Many families have been destroyed by rich false memories that, unfortunately, some people have developed.
You have to be very careful in the definition the real reasons for the trauma.
50. Tying false memories with fake news and social media is inevitable. The information we receive is tainted.
A lot of current information is sensational.
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