Quantcast
About this site
About us
Our beliefs
Your first visit?
Contact us
External links
Good books
Visitor essays
Our forum
New essays
Other site features
Buy a CD
Vital notes

World religions
BUDDHISM
.
CHRISTIANITY
Who is a Christian?
Shared beliefs
Handle change
Bible topics
Bible inerrancy
Bible harmony
Interpret Bible
Persons
Beliefs, creeds
Da Vinci code
Revelation, 666
Denominations
.
HINDUISM
ISLAM
JUDAISM
WICCA / WITCHCRAFT
Other religions
Other spirituality
Cults and NRMs
Comparing religions

About all religions
Important topics
Basic information
Gods & Goddesses
Handle change
Doubt/security
Quotes
Movies
Confusing terms
Glossary
World's end
One true religion?
Seasonal topics
Science v. Religion
More info.

Spiritual/ethics
Spirituality
Morality/ethics
Absolute truth

Peace/conflict
Attaining peace
Religious tolerance
Religious hatred
Religious conflict
Religious violence

"Hot" topics
Very hot topics
Ten commandm'ts
Abortion
Assisted suicide
Cloning
Death penalty
Environment
Equal rights - gays & bi's
Gay marriage
Nudism
Origins of the species
Sex & gender
Sin
Spanking kids
Stem cells
Women-rights
Other topics

Laws and news
Religious laws
Religious news

 

!!!!!!!! Search error!  If the URL ends something like .htm/  or .htm# delete the character(s) after .htm and hit return.

A SURVEY OF STUDIES IN SUPPORT OF
REPRESSED MEMORIES, WITH REBUTTALS

horizontal rule

Sponsored link.


horizontal rule

The original article, and a rebuttal:

Brown, Scheflin & Whitfield wrote an article in the Journal of Psychiatry & Law in support of the existence of repressed memories being caused by traumatic events. This is an important report, because such repression must happen often if Recovered Memory Therapy (RMT) is to have any validity. They concluded that the studies that they had analyzed from many countries around the world give support to the reality of memory repression (a.k.a. dissociative amnesia). 1

Piper, Pope & Borowiecki wrote a followup article in the same journal analyzing the study by Brown et al., and concluding that none of the studies examined support memory repression. 2

horizontal rule

Sponsored link:

horizontal rule

Nine claims of memory repression, with rebuttals:

Assertion by Brown, et al. Rebuttal by Piper et al.
A study by Cardena & Spiegel states that they found amnesia in 3 to 5% of the most severely affected group. No such statement exists in the Cardena & Spiegel report
Two of 38 victims of lightning suffered amnesia. The boys received the equivalent to an Electroconvulsive Treatment (ECT), which is known to damage the brain and thus produce simple biological amnesia. This is unrelated to RMT, and repressed memories.
In a study of flash flood survivors, some suffered from amnesia. No evidence is provided in the report that indicates that any of the victims actually forgot the tragedy itself -- the flash flood.
In another study of flood survivors, 7% of the children could not recall parts of what had happened. Some of the children were as young as 2 years of age -- an age at which children are incapable of having long-term memories.
In a pipeline disaster, a report showed that more of the victims suffered amnesia than did a control group. No evidence is provided in the report that indicates that any of the victims actually forgot the actual event.
Among older children of an earthquake, 32% suffered amnesia 49 of the 50 children had symptoms of  "re-experiencing" the earthquake, including "intrusive recollections" in 46 of the 49. There is no evidence that any child forgot the actual earthquake.
Some child survivors of the Nazi holocaust are troubled by memories -- either too much or too little. The original quotation referred mainly to young children who had lost their parents to the Holocaust when the children were very young. Thus one would expect them to have few, if any, memories of their parents. There is no evidence that any subject forgot their involvement in the Holocaust.
A study of Norwegian camp survivors indicated that 78% suffered from loss of memory or failing memory. The report actually reports that 78% of the survivors suffered failing memories, not lost memories.
A study of Bosnian refugees found that 20% suffered amnesia Only four subjects were involved. Three of them reported amnesia "once a week or less, a little bit, once in a while." One had amnesia "2-4 times per week, somewhat." No victim had continuous amnesia of the ethnic cleansing.

As a minimum, it would seem that the assertions by Brown et al. are not supported by the original studies that they quote. One can conclude that the existence of memory repression brought about by serious emotional or physical trauma is not supported by their report.

horizontal rule

References:

  1. Brown, Scheflin and Whitfield, "Recovered memories: The current  weight of the evidence in science and in the courts," Journal of Psychiatry & Law, 27 (1999): 5-156.
  2. A. Piper, H. Pope, & Borowiecki, III, "Studies alledbed by Brown, Scheflin and Whitfield to provide evidence of dissociative amnesia," Journal of Psychiatry & Law,  28 (2000),149-213.

horizontal rule

Navigation: Home page >"Hot" religious topics and conflicts > RMT > here

horizontal rule

Copyright 2002 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Originally written: 2002-NOV-23
Latest update: 2002-NOV-23
Editor: B.A. Robinson

line.gif (538 bytes)


horizontal rule

Go to the previous page, or to the RMT menu, or choose:

Google
Web ReligiousTolerance.org

Go to home page  We would really appreciate your help

E-mail us about errors, etc.  Purchase a CD of this web site

FreeFind search, lists of new essays...  Having problems printing our essays?


Twitter link

Facebook icon

Google Page Translator:

This page translator works on Firefox,
Opera, Chrome, and Safari browsers only

After translating, click on the "show
original" button at the top of this
page to restore page to English.