Memories are part and parcel to the lives of human beings. The thought of false memories or even that they are prone to be affected by influences from outside may seem more disturbing. After all, memories are essential not only in the manner in which people interact with each other but also creating and sustaining our self-image. The main theme of the movie "Inception" spins around the capability to make false implantations of memories in other individuals. While this fact makes the movie a fascinating Hollywood movie, we are not sure if this issue has any real scientific backup. The movie is a story of a skilled scientist who is directed by Cobb to gain access to the mind Fischer while he is in his subconscious state and implant a memory of crumbling the energy conglomerate of his father. The team is employed by Saito, who is a Japanese businessman that hopes to gain profits from dismantling the company of his competitor (Ty & Kilbourn, 2013). By managing to violate and manipulate the conscious mind of Fischer, Cobb and his followers begin to corporatize his subconscious mind to do work which is beneficiary to their client.
In the movie Inception, Cobb and his team must cautiously create a simpler version of an idea for it to generate naturally in the mind of the subject. During this process, they must make constructions of multi-layered dream situations where the subject can create the idea for himself and should appear self-generated. Similarly, Fischer is granted an illusion of making choices out of his will even though the decisions he make have bee...
n manipulated from the start. The studies in neuroscience have resolved that when an individual is asleep, particularly the rapid eye movement sleep, the brain manages to do play back of the patterns of everyday events. This may play the role of guiding the neural networks on how to store memories. But, this study has not been able to give details on the subjective history of dreaming or the reason dreams match elements taken from real life experiences with fantasy. In inception, the mentor of Cobb is a professor at a college in France who has shared his scientific information of mind navigation through reasoned dreaming to him (Botz-Bornstein, 2011). The professor bewails the choice Cobb made of becoming a thief of the mind who extracts information to benefit the corporate moguls. The movie displays how sophisticated techniques and technologies which have at many times created for solving social issues can be misappropriated by powerful individuals like Saito, to benefit in the market capitalist world.
This proposed research, therefore, seeks to analyze how memories are signified in the brain and inspect the possibility of making implantation of false memories in other people. The study will use a "functional magnetic resonance imaging" which is a procedure that involves measuring the brain's activities by making detections of any changes which may be associated with the flow of blood. This study will make attempts of shedding light on the implantation of false memories by carrying out investigations on false memories which evidently involve errors in either
contextual or content components. It is assumed that the paradigm used will create false memories of recognition of the items which will be shown in the misinformation phase when asked of the main event phase.
Twenty fluent speakers of the English language both male and female will be recruited from the Johns Hopkins University. The participants will be aged between eighteen to thirty-four years, and all should be right handed. All participants will be naïve to the hypotheses and experimental materials, should give a written and informed consent for their participation and will be paid for the time spent.
The materials used include eight vignettes which are unique in design. Each vignette will consist of fifty colored digital slide images. Out of the fifty slides, twelve of them will be critical slides. Critical slides are the slides that will contain an item that will change across the original and misinformation phases and will, therefore, serve as the events' misinformation. Two different sets of critical slides will be placed for each vignette and they will be randomized across the participants. All the slide images will be edited to size 300 x 300 pixels.
The recognition test will consist of detailed questions concerning what will be presented in the first event phase. For all the eight vignettes, there will be a total of eighteen questions and twelve will be critical questions regarding the critical slides that will be changed. Six questions will be the control questions regarding the slides which will be consistent. Critical questions will be included, such as "Where is the man hiding after stealing the girl's wallet and crossing the street?" Control questions will have same details as critical questions. A control question will be like this for example, "What type of shop is situated to the left of the video shop?" Separate recognition test for the eight vignettes will be conducted. The second test stage will be a memory test that will follow immediately after concluding all the eight tests of recognition. This test will ask from which presentation the participants will have found the answers they will indicate on the previous recognition test. There will also be a memory test for each test of recognition for the eight vignettes. All the memory tests will be administered on paper.
In the first session, there will be two stages, both of which will take place in the fMRI scanner. In the original phase, the participants will watch eight vignettes displaying different events (Okado & Stark, 2005). They will be educated that the reason for the study will be to judge if memory for events is enhanced with either one or two presentations. The vignette's contents will range from having a girl's wallet stolen by a man who seems helpful, to a student who is waiting for a class while making interactions with a few friends. There will be break periods between each presentation of the vignette. After a delay whereby the anatomical images of the brains of participants have been acquired, the second phase will be presented. Here participants will be exposed to misinformation unknowingly regarding each event by being led to watching
what they will have believed are the same vignettes displaying the usual eight events, but the critical slides of each vignette will be altered slightly. For instance, in the above incidence, in the original event stage, the man will hide behind a post, and in the misinformation stage, the man will hide behind a tree. This will serve as the misinformation phase, and the style of presentation will be the same as the original event stage.
In the second session, there will be two phases which will take place outside the scanner after forty-eight hours and the memory for events of the participants will be tested. During the first phase, the participants will be asked what they will have remembered observing in the original events from the first session. The test will be a three-alternative forced test of recognition to avoid a lot of complications in the retrieval cue. The recognition phase will then be followed by a surprise memory test, which will be based on the participants will give on the recognition test to enhance the confidence of the experimenter in the correct and false memories. Participants will indicate the source of their memory for each few questions they will have answered during the previous first test. Imaging will be carried out on a Philips Gyroscan scanner which is equipped with a brain sense coil. By making exploitations of the sensitivity profiles of various surface coils, sensitivity encoding imaging may under sample k-space with a few numbers of steps in phase encoding at the same time giving a full viewing field of images which are free of aliasing. This results in a significantly reduced time of acquisition and distortion because of the magnetic susceptibility.
The purpose of this research is to inspect how memories are signified in the brain and inspect the possibility of making implantation of false memories in other people.The original events crucial items which will precisely recognize and further approved on the memory test as option A to be seen in the first group of presentations or option d will be regarded true memories. Misinformation crucial items which will be imprecisely recognized and further approved on the memory test as option A to be seen in the first group of presentations or option C to be seen in the two sets of presentations will be regarded false memories. In the recognition task, the students should approve misinformation items considerably more often than the foil items. This should suggest that the paradigm will reliably create recognition of false memories of the items which will be shown in the misinformation stage when they will be asked about the original phase. To evaluate the quality of the false memories and to make elimination of obvious guesses from the analysis the participants will be required to take a source test of memory, whereby they will indicate from which source they will have remembered the answers to their recognition test. The data from this test should show a bigger percentage of the trials to be classified as correct memories. This should be in response that will have seen the item during the
first phase or that they will have noted conflicting items across the phases if the item from the original phase will have been approved on the recognition test. If the item from the misinformation stage will be recognized, a smaller percentage of the trials will be classified as false memories his will be in response to having seen it in either phase one or both phases.
Some neuro imaging research has investigated false memories, but many have concentrated on the retrieval of differences between false and true memories instead of focusing on the contributions of false memories. This study points out the vital role of encoding processes in the creation of false memory which is driven by the effect of misinformation (Raju, 2014). Neural activities during the encoding of the original and misinformation events will predict whether the correct or incorrect information will be reported later. While the previous studies on memory revealed that the activity of encoding makes predictions on what is consequently remembered, the present study aims to demonstrate that the DM effect may apply to both the true and false memories.
The DM effect will be noted in the left hippocampus tail and the left perirhinal cortex. When the encoding activity is greater in the original event stage, the items of the initial event, are subsequently recollected. When the encoding activity is greater in the misinformation stage, the items of the misinformation stage are subsequently remembered (Anderson,1990). Therefore in the two regions, activity is correlated with the successful encoding of an item if it is remembered later whether from the misinformation phase or the original phase.
While some behavioral studies have investigated the misinformation effect, this study will be the first to discover the underlying mechanisms of the phenomenon with the techniques used in neuro-imaging. It is observable that, the interaction of the processes of encoding are essential for correct and false memory creation in the paradigm, as activities observed during the two phases of encoding will predict if the information on the original event or the inaccurate misinformation will be reported. This study will contribute to our knowledge of the process of creation of false memories and the way the operational method of the normal memory system.
- Ty, E., & Kilbourn, R. J. A. (2013). The memory effect: The remediation of memory in literature and film.
- Botz-Bornstein, T. (2011). Inception and Philosophy: Ideas to Die For. New York: Open Court.
- Raju, Prasad. (2014). Gre Word List: Vocabulary With Memory Triggers. Partridge Pub.
- Anderson, J. R. (1990). Cognitive psychology and its implications . WH Freeman/Times Books/Henry Holt & Co.
- Gazzaniga, M. S. (2004). The cognitive neurosciences. MIT press.
- Okado, Y., & Stark, C. E. (2005). Neural activity during encoding predicts false memories created by misinformation. Learning & Memory, 12(1), 3-11.
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