Events on July 1-
1961 Saturday - Birth of Princess Diana.
1991 Monday Death of actor Michael Landon.
1997 Tuesday - Death of actor Robert Mitchum.
2000 Saturday - Death of actor Walter Mathau.
2004 Thursday - Death of actor Marlon Brando.
Many of you will remember watching Prince Andrew and Kate Middleton's wedding on April 29 of this year or hearing it on the news even if you do not have a particularly good memory for events. Then on May 1 or 2 hearing of Osama Bin Laden's death.This is because the events are significant and called a flashbulb memory. Flashbulb memories are when you intensely remember significant events on the news or in your personal life.
If you are old enough you remember where you were when you heard about President Kennedy's assassination, Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy's assassinations. Younger folks will recall Charles and Diana's wedding, the Challenger Explosion, and later that year Andrew and Sarah Ferguson's wedding. Most people recall Princess Diana's death, then Mother Theresa's five days later. Earlier this year, I was giving a presentation on memory to students at Atlantic Cape Community College. Many of them were born around the time of the Gulf War in 1991, and they were old enough to recall 911.
Flashbulb memories can occur over personal events. Most people will recall the birth of a sibling or a death in the family. You recall graduations, your wedding and the births of your children. Interestingly, you may think that you recall every detail of those days. However, it has been shown that , while you will recall the event itself well you often mispercieve details. This is because you are highly emotional during these events so the details can become confused. Similarly, when you have just received good or bad news it is hard to concentrate on reading or studying.
We could take a break from our calendar project each weekend. If you are highly motivated you can peruse these blogs and review what you have learned. Next week I will take everything you have learned with the symbols and incantations and apply it to memorizing the calendar. Have a good weekend!