djsurrey Posted May 5, 2014 Posted May 5, 2014 (edited) In terms of scientific inaccuracies the real question is does eidetic memory even exist in the manner shown in so much tv and movies. It appears that this interesting plot device is essentially fiction. http://serendip.brynmawr.edu/exchange/node/7381 Eidetic images usually fade away involuntarily after a few minutes, and the image is lost upon blinking. Once an eidetic image has faded away, it can rarely – arguably never – be retrieved. However, an eidetic image is not unflawed. As with all forms of memory, eidetic images are a construction of reality. People with eidetic memory may alter physical features of an image or invent details during recall. Searleman (2007) describes that eidetic images can be influenced by cognitive biases and expectations. Therefore, eidetic images are not literally “photographic” representations of images, as implied by the popular term photographic memory. Eidetic memory is extremely rare in the adult population. However, research indicates that 2-15% of children possess eidetic memory. A study by Ralph Haber in 1964 screened 500 elementary school-age children and found that as many as 50% of children possess eidetic memory (la Brecque, 1972). Additionally, geriatric populations also demonstrate a higher frequency of eidetic imagery. The tendency of eidetic memory to manifest in young and old populations is particularly interesting in light of research indicating that verbalization during the time that a person studies the original image interferes with eidetic image formation. Therefore, it is plausible that the variation in frequency of eidetic imagery is due to dependence on linguistic ability. While adults utilize abstract linguistic thought – and often have a hard time repressing this – children depend on visual stimuli while interacting with their surroundings. Geriatric populations may also revert back to a similar approach as children, as the language centers in their brains begin to deteriorate. Therefore, young and old populations are probably more likely to concentrate on visual details and less likely to verbalize while studying an image. This is consistent with evidence suggesting that eidetic memory is more frequent in people with mental disabilities, such as autism. One of the major characteristics of autism is delayed language and communication development. Therefore, people with autism may depend on visual stimuli for much longer than other populations. Edited May 5, 2014 by djsurrey Share this post Link to post Share on other sites More sharing options...
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