Abstract

Our culture often describes memory as if it were all pastoral reverie—a safe and quiet form of entertainment allowing us to revisit events and places, lovers, families, and friends. Memory acts as a low-tech alternative to novels and video games, used to keep spirits up. In traditional narrative, memory serves to remind characters of their devotion to each other, or other obligations. Like other forms of entertainment, reverie might occasionally by chance lead to reflection, insight or self-knowledge. Sometimes this is facilitated by technology, such as film, or the memories of others casting a new light on previous events. In more contemporary writing, some authors dwell on a more traumatic form of this reverie that psychotherapists call ‘negative rehearsal’—the self-castigating narrative revisitation of past mortification—or worse, of own wrong-doing—that accompanies depression and leads to a spiralling devaluation of self-worth.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMemory in the Twenty-First Century
Subtitle of host publicationNew Critical Perspectives from the Arts, Humanities, and Sciences
EditorsS. Groes
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Pages205-207
Number of pages3
ISBN (Print)9781137520579
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016

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Bryson, J. J. (2016). Simulation and the evolution of thought. In S. Groes (Ed.), Memory in the Twenty-First Century: New Critical Perspectives from the Arts, Humanities, and Sciences (pp. 205-207). Palgrave Macmillan. https://doi.org/10.1057/9781137520586_24