Re: The Reality of Repressed Memory

From: Stevan Harnad (
Date: Sun Nov 26 1995 - 21:34:35 GMT

> From: "Lee liz" <>
> Date: Thu, 16 Nov 1995 09:15:55 GMT
> the psychoanalytic approach appears to be saying that we truly don't
> know our own minds, and that even if I were to say "I suffered no abuse
> as a child" they would argue "Ah, but how do you really know, aren't
> you just unable to recall the events? Seems to me there are those who
> would think negatively of everyone and everything and assume any sort
> of behaviour or personality dysfunction must be the result of earlier
> abuse, probably sexual, probably by a male member of our own families.

There are two stereotypes you could imagine: People who try to convince
us we were all abused as children, even though we weren't, and people
who are try to convince us that we were not abused, when we were.

Anyone know what the true proportions are, or how to find out?

> Does this mean that we might all be carrying round certain
> memories ,un-known to us , that can help explain our negative moods and
> personality ? Is our mind telling us "that what we don't know won't
> hurt us " .

It is conceivable (though not yet demonstrated) that inhibiting
traumatic memories might be adaptive -- but the reverse is conceivable

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