November 2023

6 Books To Improve Your Memory

— Improve your recollection with these 6 books.
6 Books To Improve Your Memory
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Joshua Foer, the 2006 US memory champion and best-selling author of "Moonwalking with Einstein," recommends six books on the art of remembering:

Our favourite quote from Moonwalking with Einstein

Monotony collapses time; novelty unfolds it. You can exercise daily and eat healthily and live a long life, while experiencing a short one. If you spend your life sitting in a cubicle and passing papers, one day is bound to blend unmemorably into the next - and disappear. That's why it's so important to change routines regularly, and take vacations to exotic locales, and have as many new experiences as possible that can serve to anchor our memories. Creating new memories stretches out psychological time, and lengthens our perception of our lives.

The blockbuster phenomenon that charts an amazing journey of the mind while revolutionizing our concept of memory.

An instant bestseller that is poised to become a classic, Moonwalking with Einstein recounts Joshua Foer's yearlong quest to improve his memory under the tutelage of top "mental athletes." He draws on cutting-edge research, a surprising cultural history of remembering, and venerable tricks of the mentalist's trade to transform our understanding of human memory. From the United States Memory Championship to deep within the author's own mind, this is an electrifying work of journalism that reminds us that, in every way that matters, we are the sum of our memories.

This work ushered forth a new era of scholarly inquiry into the art of remembering. Yates relates the narrative of how the art of remembering developed, beginning with the ancient Greeks. She also discusses a mental memory retrieval mechanism known as a "memory palace" - an imagined superstructure in your mind's eye that you use to arrange and retain knowledge. The aim is to take a structure that you are very acquainted with and place images in it that is so vivid that you will never forget it. It is easier to recall things if you can involve the visual section of your brain in the process. Mnemonists claim that their abilities are as much about creativity as they are remembering.

Our favourite quote from Art Of Memory

The Art of Memory is a non-fiction book written by British historian Frances A. Yates in 1966. The book traces the evolution of mnemonic systems from the classical time of Simonides of Ceos in Ancient Greece through the Renaissance era of Giordano Bruno, and concludes with Gottfried Leibniz and the early birth of the scientific method in the 17th century.

The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy describes its release as "an significant stimulant to the blooming of experimental study on images and memory."

The Art of Memory was named one of the top 100 nonfiction books by Modern Library.

This is the most comprehensive examination of the role of memory in mediaeval civilization. During the Middle Ages, people realised that words that are accompanied by picture are considerably more remembered. Illuminations serve to make the content memorable by making the margins of a book colourful and lovely. It's a shame we've forgotten the skill of lighting. The fact that today's books are primarily made up of words makes it simpler to forget the text. With the iPad's influence, the future of the book is up for reimagining, and I wonder whether we'll rediscover the value of making books more aesthetically rich.

Our favourite quote from The Book of Memory: A Study of Memory in Medieval Culture

Mary Carruthers' renowned research of memory training and applications in European societies throughout the Middle Ages has radically influenced how historians interpret mediaeval civilization. This thoroughly edited and updated second edition revisits all of the original edition's content and conclusions. While responding to new research directions inspired by the original, this updated edition focuses on the function of trained memory in creativity, whether of literature, music, architecture, or manuscript books.

The new edition will reignite the debate on memory in mediaeval studies, and, like the first, will be required reading for historians, musicologists, artists, and writers, as well as those interested in issues of orality and literacy (anthropology), the working and design of memory (both neuropsychology and artificial memory), and the disciplines of meditation (religion).

This is a fantastic book. Rubin uses cognitive science learning to help us grasp oral traditions – stories passed down by word of mouth. And he writes about how the ancients knew things about cognition that have just lately been rediscovered. For example, rhyme and rhythm are both mnemonic and euphonic. Using rhyme, metre, rhythm, and song to make something memorable is one of the finest methods to do it. That appears to be how "The Odyssey" and "The Iliad" were passed down.

Our favourite quote from Memory in Oral Traditions

Oral traditions, which have long been researched by anthropologists, historians, and linguists, have supplied a plethora of intriguing insights on distinct cultural practises that span the history of humanity. David C. Rubin, a cognitive psychologist, gives for the first time in this pioneering study an accessible, thorough analysis of what such traditions may tell us about the complicated inner workings of human memory. Rubin provides a model of recall, based on their three basic forms of organization theme, imagery, and sound pattern, and utilises it to discover the mechanics of memory that underpin genres such as counting-out rhymes, ballads, and epics.

The book concludes with an engrossing exploration of how conversions from oral to written communication modes might forecast how cutting-edge computer technology will effect future transmission protocols. Throughout, Rubin offers the findings of significant fresh research as well as novel insights on traditional topics. Memory in Oral Traditions is a well written and farsighted book that will be avidly read by students and academics in fields as diverse as cognitive psychology, literary studies, classics, and cultural anthropology.

This is a novel that should be read by more people. It's a look back at how we've discussed memory throughout history. Today, we discuss about photographic memory or digital memory, and we compare our memories to modern technology. That has always been the case. The Greeks referred to memory as if it were a wax tablet. Memory was viewed as a hologram by intellectuals in the mid-twentieth century. Memory was an aviary to Socrates. It was a mystic writing pad for Freud. Draaisma discusses how these metaphors impact our perceptions of memory.

Our favourite quote from Metaphors of Memory

What exactly is memory? We lose our sense of ourselves, thinking, and even our capacity to execute simple bodily activities when we lose our memories. However, it is elusive and difficult to describe, and philosophers and psychologists have employed metaphors to comprehend it throughout history. This fascinating book takes the reader on a guided tour of these memory metaphors from ancient times to the present day, examining how metaphors were frequently derived from techniques and instruments developed to store information such as wax tablets, books, photography, computers, and even the hologram.

This book pioneered the field of humanistic clinical histories. There would be no Oliver Sacks, the British neurologist who published "Awakening" without Luria, a Russian neuropsychologist. Luria examined a journalist named Solomon Shereshevsky, or just "S," for 30 years. S was said to have a vacuum-cleaner memory. In fact, he appeared to recall everything. He was a poor writer who couldn't make a livelihood as anything other than a stage act — a memory freak. That, I believe, hints at something profound: forgetting is a vital aspect of learning because it trains us to abstract. S couldn't digest what he saw and couldn't find his place in the world because he recalled too much.

Our favourite quote from The Mind of a Mnemonist

Perhaps this account of a man who "saw" everything will play some part in the difficult course that lies ahead.

This study explores the inner world of a rare human phenomenon―a man who was endowed with virtually limitless powers of memory. From his intimate knowledge of S., the mnemonist, gained from conversations and testing over a period of almost thirty years, A. R. Luria is able to reveal in rich detail not only the obvious strengths of S.’s astonishing memory but also his surprising weaknesses: his crippling inability to forget, his pattern of reacting passively to life, and his uniquely handicapped personality.

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