memory
The power of the mind to think of a past that no longer exists poses both empirical, psychological problems, and more abstract philosophical ones. The scientist wants to know how the brain stores its memories, and whether the mechanism is similar for different types of memory, such as short-term and long-term memories. The philosopher is particularly puzzled by the representative power of memory. That is, if I summon up a memory of some event, how do I know to interpret it as representing the past, rather than being a pure exercise of imagination? Is there a specific ‘feeling of pastness’? But if so, might I not then have the feeling, but not know to interpret that as a feeling of pastness? Indeed, is there always a present representation, or might memory be a form of direct acquaintance with the past? This might at least give us a justification of the confidence we place in memory. But is not the sceptical hypothesis proposed by Russell, that the earth might have sprung into existence five minutes ago, with a population that ‘remembers’ a wholly unreal past, at least logically possible? But if it is logically possible, the question of how we know that this is not what has happened is set to look intractable.

Philosophy dictionary. . 2011.

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  • Memory — • Memory is the capability of the mind, to store up conscious processes, and reproduce them later with some degree of fidelity Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Memory     Memory    …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • memory — mem‧o‧ry [ˈmemri] noun [uncountable] COMPUTING the part of a computer in which information is stored: • Storing and retrieving video images requires vast amounts of computer memory. • a machine with 4 gigabytes of memory • Both companies have… …   Financial and business terms

  • Memory — Mem o*ry, n.; pl. {Memories}. [OE. memorie, OF. memoire, memorie, F. m[ e]moire, L. memoria, fr. memor mindful; cf. mora delay. Cf. {Demur}, {Martyr}, {Memoir}, {Remember}.] [1913 Webster] 1. The faculty of the mind by which it retains the… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • memory — memory, remembrance, recollection, reminiscence, mind, souvenir are comparable though not wholly synonymous terms since all involve the ideas of remembering and of being remembered. Memory applies chiefly to the power or function of remembering… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • memory — [mem′ə rē, mem′rē] n. pl. memories [ME memorie < OFr < L memoria < memor, mindful, remembering < IE * mimoro , redupl. of base * (s)mer , to remember, recall > MERIT] 1. the power, act, or process of recalling to mind facts… …   English World dictionary

  • memory — (n.) mid 13c., recollection (of someone or something); awareness, consciousness, also fame, renown, reputation, from Anglo Fr. memorie (O.Fr. memoire, 11c., mind, memory, remembrance; memorial, record ) and directly from L. memoria memory,… …   Etymology dictionary

  • memory — ► NOUN (pl. memories) 1) the faculty by which the mind stores and remembers information. 2) a person or thing remembered. 3) the length of time over which people s memory extends. 4) a computer s equipment or capacity for storing data or program… …   English terms dictionary

  • memory — [n1] ability to hold in the mind anamnesis, awareness, camera eye*, cognizance, consciousness, dead eye*, flashback, memorization, mind, mindfulness, mind’s eye*, recall, recapture, recognition, recollection, reflection, remembrance, reminiscence …   New thesaurus

  • memory — I (commemoration) noun celebration, remembrance, writing II (retention) noun mind, recalling, recollection, reflection III index hindsight, recognition …   Law dictionary

  • Memory — For other uses, see Memory (disambiguation). Neuropsychology Topics …   Wikipedia

  • memory — /mem euh ree/, n., pl. memories. 1. the mental capacity or faculty of retaining and reviving facts, events, impressions, etc., or of recalling or recognizing previous experiences. 2. this faculty as possessed by a particular individual: to have a …   Universalium

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