How Emotions Received from Technology Can Trigger Flashbulb Memory
Memory never works alone, there are always some emotions involved which can be positive and negative at the same time. Emotions are strong feelings that come from someone’s circumstances, mood, or relationship with others or even oneself. Memory is in the hippocampus, the amygdala, and other parts of the brain and is the ability of remembering details, events, things, or beings, basically everything that can be seen, touch, taste, hear, or smell and those are called the five senses.
Flashbulb memory was invented by Brown and Kulik in 1977 on a definitive paper. It’s generated by traumatic events that are unexpected and involve a lot of arousing emotions. The subject that is personally involved in this traumatic events are remembered more than ordinary events because they are stronger but not necessarily accurate when it comes to explanations. Memories can get rehearsed, but gaps might get filled in by what the subject think is true, the brain does this patterning without the subject being conscious of it. In fact, fresh vivid details aren’t as trustworthy. Brown and Kulik used the assassination of John F. Kennedy occurred ten years before as prototype. All the subject tested gave detailed and vivid memories of learning of the assassination. They came to the conclusion, that special memories creates details, accurate, and long lasting memories. On the other hand Neisser is a constant opponent of flashbulb memory. He and Harsh ran a study in 1982 which they called ‘ phantom flashbulbs’ or false recollection of hearing the news of an event. They were led to the conclusion that ‘flashbulb memory’ are created after a long period of time after they saw in their study that the subjects gave completely different stories when told after over a year.
Moreover, Talarico and Rubin in 2003 with their study claimed that despite the flashbulb events and how is emotionally charged, the rate of forgetting of flashbulb memories is the same as ordinary memories. They stated that the difference between the two memories is not the rate of forgetting them but the confidence in which they stand, therefore flashbulb memory even though they can be forgotten their confidence stays high do to emotional involvement. Emotions are the cognitive process we are discussing, and emotions are linked to memories. So that means our argument is not digital technology effects on memory, but digital technology effect on emotions and how emotions are linked to our memory. Technology is associated both with changes in provisional mood as well as changes behavior and brain function over time. Provisional mood are shared in all experiences they are the usual moods and not being specific for any type of experience. Digital technology like cell phones, social media, video games, and any other technological entertainment affects our emotions. People nowadays use technology everywhere, everyday, at any time for the simple fact that is easy, fast and makes us feel part of society.
However, all the emotions that are felt by digital technology involve excitement and dopamine which is a predominant molecular currency of the reward system. Everything that is addictive, for example compulsive behavior characterized by loss of control and continuation, increases dopamine in the nucleus accumbens which is situated in the area of the hippocampus and is a key component of it. At puberty, there are hormone related changes in the dopamine system, and the overuse of technology could have a negative effect on adolescent. To conclude, memory that involves traumas and emotions are not reliable for the simple fact that sometimes the trauma is so big for the person that the brain unconsciously represses it and makes it inaccessible. The emotions received from our digital technology probably aren’t that severe however they could and definitely do change someone’s behavior and emotions receiving. Because, everyone can access to the internet and there are not age limitations a small child could see a video of ISIS beheading a family member and this leads to more exposure to traumas. In addition, digital technology also give a limitation to our natural emotions, the face to face emotions, and thouse get replaced by our technology and what we see on the screen of our cell phones, computer, ipads, etc. Also, does not allows all the five sense to work individually or all together, but just some of them and that might lead to lose the ability to use them.
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