INTRODUCTION

My investigation of autobiographical memory focuses on the following questions: what happens when we remember something and why do we remember some things rather than others? What is the relation between our present experience and our perceived past? My working hypothesis is that autobiographical memory is a constructed continuum. I analyze the conditions for autobiographical memory and provide an account of its structure which, I argue, is hierarchical. I take autobiographical memory to be synonymous with episodic memory, in the sense that this is a memory of significant happenings in our personal lives. One could object that not all autobiographical memories are episodic, since I can remember facts about my life such as my birthday without recalling them as past personal experiences. But do I really remember my birthday, viz the day I was born, or do I ‘just know’ it? I suspect the latter. On the other hand, are all episodic memories autobiographical? Cognitive scientists may object that the results of research on animal memory should also be taken into consideration. I think the question of whether animals have episodic memory can safely be suspended, at least until cognitive ethological research can show us whether animals understand the past tense. 1 I argue that the structure of autobiographical memory is semantic (and hence specific to humans), involving a representational theory and a temporal reference frame, as well as a capacity to construct continuity and I present the conditions and rules for this structure, as well as its elements, abstract features and the relations governing the possible combinations of episodes. Autobiographical or episodic memory is the memory of intentional human actions and experiences. I begin by reconstructing two 19th century memory theories which, from different scientific perspectives, explain our autobiographical memory in terms of a dispositional trace theory. The Bohemian mathematician,
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Cf. on this John Campbell (1994): 40. I agree with Campbell’s notion of episodic memory as memory of a past event as having a particular time at which it occurred and that episodic memory involves a temporal frame of reference which animals lack. Campbell argues that episodic memory presupposes a linear conception of time, which grounds our ability to locate autobiographical episodes as at particular past times; see Campbell (1997): 105-118. I think episodic memory presupposes our capacity for constructing a continuous temporal reference frame.

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Introduction

philosopher and Roman-catholic priest Bernard Bolzano who was expelled from Prague University because of his nonconformist lectures on religion, examines the problem of memory in his epistemology, the third part of the Theory of Science (1837). 40 years later, another Pragueian scholar, the Lusatian physiologist Ewald Hering (1870), gave a lecture at the Viennese Academy of Sciences in which he calls for an interdisciplinary approach for investigating memory as a general function of organic matter. Both authors consider autobiographical memory as a mental and cognitive event, arguing that memory should not be defined in terms of knowledge because it has conceptual primacy over knowledge. They appeal to trace theory for explaining the causal continuity between past retention and present recall. On their view, traces are not imprints of earlier events but dispositions enabling our retrieval of past experiences. This dispositionalist trace theory is an ancestor of the notion of ‘synergistic ecphory’ or the correct configuration of trace and cue, coined by contemporary memory researcher Endel Tulving (1972, 1983, 1999, 2002) following the evolutionary biologist Richard Semon (1921). 2 I then investigate autobiographical memory from a contemporary perspective, based on a combination of Husserl’s phenomenological investigations on time, imagination and recollection with John Campbell’s stepwise account of autobiographical memory. I relate these to the late Francisco Varela’s reconstruction of Husserl’s theory on time-consciousness and subjective experience, but I also contrast my approach with the empirical methods favoured by the cognitive sciences. How are timeconsciousness and memory represented? I think there is an equivalence between time consciousness conceived in Husserlian terms of primary impression, retention and protention on one hand and linguistic expressions of time in the form of verbal tenses (in most Indo-European languages), viz present, past and future, on the other. This is how we can explain the second equivalence between narrative form or a (re)constructed temporal continuum and the successive temporal order of ‘earlier’ and ‘later’. By arguing that our recollections have a semantic base, we can explain the selectivity of autobiographical memory: scenes or episodes that constitute an autobiographical sequence are related grammatically, by means of the syntactic categories of tense, mood, voice, person and gender and the semantic categories of meaning, sense and reference. To put it bluntly, a mood is a mental state as well as a verb inflection and temporal modes are modes of judgment and representation which make up our
As far as I can tell, only one philosopher mentions Hering’s theory of memory and its connection with Semon: Ernst Cassirer (1944): “The Human World of Space and Time”, 1972: 50.
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On Autobiographical Memory

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autobiographical memory. For the ‘glue’ constituting an autobiographical memory is not an empirical relation of causality but a semantic relation of ground-consequence which is motivated by affective salience or attention considered as sensitivity to reasons. That is why we remember some things rather than others. Models of recollection should account for our access to our past. I present two models for explaining the mental time travel that characterizes autobiographical memory and our representing what is absent. The first model uses trace theory whereas the second model relies on the notion of continuity. My interest in autobiographical memory is conceptual and analytical rather than sociological or cultural. I do not examine autobiographical memory as a socio-cultural phenomenon, nor do I think it likely that philosophical and socio-cultural memory theories are discussing the same phenomenon, even though they tend to agree that memory is a construction – for different reasons. Cultural psychologists argue that memory is a construction as opposed to a natural kind, whereas philosophers consider memory as a mental faculty or a system of cognitive capacities and are concerned with describing how it works and whether it is a source of knowledge. 3 I follow Ian Hacking’s (1995) view that in memory, the past is “revised retroactively” and that memory of intentional human actions cannot be a faithful record of the past because that past is under construction: it only becomes ‘the past’ under description. 4

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On memory as a cultural construction see Anna Wierzbicka (2004) “Is “remember” a universal human concept? “Memory” and culture.” See also John Sutton’s (2005) discussion of Wierzbicka, “Language, Memory, and Concepts of Memory: semantic diversity and scientific psychology”. 4 Ian Hacking (1995): 249.

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PART I: RECONSTRUCTING AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL MEMORY: AN EPISTEMOLOGICAL ACCOUNT TH BASED ON TWO 19 CENTURY VIEWS .

2 Unlike their psychological counterparts. 133-135. philosophical theories do not make neurophysiological assumptions about how recollections are stored in a person’s brain or reactivated in his nervous system. 1 A philosopher’s interest is indeed conceptual rather than empirical and a philosophical investigation is less concerned with the accumulation of additional data obtained in a laboratory than with the theoretical framework experiments presuppose. Interestingly. . He presents a model for measuring memory traces by the increase of synaptic transmission in neurocircuits. for instance Larry L. recent experiments seem to confirm the results obtained by the “armchair method” a few centuries ago. Madison (2004) “Electrophysiology of Synapses” and his study of synaptic connections in fruit flies: 42-49. Brewer. Kandel (1999) on the consolidation of synaptic connections and experiments with the sea snail Aplysia. ibid: 32. also called consolidation switch from process-based or short-term memory to structural-based or long-term memory. Their experiments show how memories are stored in the central nervous system in the form of traces or synaptic transmissions resulting from a high-frequency activation of neurons. such as the claim that memory traces consist in the consolidation of synaptic connections.PART I INTRODUCTION In a fairly recent survey of studies on autobiographical memory. Brewer (1995): 19-66. Squire and Eric R. 3 Cf. the psychologist William Brewer (1995) derisively describes philosophical clarifications of the concept of recollection as an “armchair method”. The “armchair method” does not deal with empirical considerations about the neurobiological aspects of memory.2. as opposed to psychologists’ (more functional) use of empirical methods. 3 Yet empirical confirmation is but a byproduct of the philosophical activity of refining. Cf. based on the persistent strength of synaptic transmission increase (long-term facilitation or potentiation). refuting or developing 1 2 William F. Whilst philosophers may disagree about the role of recollection played in cognition and the acquisition of knowledge. also Daniel V. 144. however.: 110. psychologists face the problem of terminological imprecision and disagreement about what phenomena the notions of recollection and recollective memory are intended to cover. Cf. I briefly discuss the consolidation of memory traces from a philosophical point of view in section 4.

ch. 6 John Campbell (1994).On Autobiographical Memory 7 roles played by concepts such as [recollective memory] or [trace] in philosophy of psychology and epistemology for (in my view). then. the 19th Century philosopher Bernard Bolzano examined some aspects of what we now call episodic or autobiographical memory. by Rolf George (Blackwell. 146. 1973). 5 Episodic or autobiographical memory. Hence disagreement among philosophers and psychologists alike. the main philosophical aim is to determine whether or not these notions suit our needs for providing appropriate descriptions of mental events. but neither one includes much of the epistemology we are concerned with here. Bolzano’s notion of memory trace serves to mark the border-line. The translations are mine. on this Paul Ferdinand Linke (a doctoral student of Husserl’s) (1929). :233. serves to evolve the terminology and improve the methodology of classification. §§8586. ff. Oxford. though there are two partial English translations of the Theory of Science. 5 Cf. ff. A. between perception and representation: Bolzano’s question is: how do we recognize what we see? In order to answer this question. Our account of memory depends on how we answer the following questions: how do we retain information or reconstruct past experiences and how do we recognize information acquired in the past? Assuming that our memory is a cognitive capacity (Erkenntnisvermögen). he examines memory experience or what happens when we remember something we have experienced. or perhaps the transition. Terrell (Dordrecht: Reidel. 4 I reconstruct the Bolzanian account of episodic memory or recollection and show that his notion of memory-trace provides a useful explanation of the link between experience and recognition. In addition. has a grounded or dependent character.7. 6 Bolzano examines the problem of memory in part III of the Theory of Science (1837) (Wissenschaftslehre. 4 . or the epistemology (Erkenntnislehre) and in the Athanasia (1838. Here Bolzano’s account is close to John Campbell’s stepwise conception of memory: both authors are concerned with the distinction between ground-floor and reflective conditions of knowledge. abbreviated as WL). in his discussion of cognitive capacities (Erkenntnisvermögen). 1972) and by B. especially §§ 283-4. abbreviated as A). I then show that a reconstruction of Bolzano’s view on recollection and memory trace yields the outlines of a phenomenological theory about the hierarchical organization of our memory: recollections consist of nested levels of experience where a perceptual experience is embedded in an intentional experience. 206-209. the reflective referral to a previous experience and the claim that memory judgments are grounded on memory impressions or traces.

Kandel et al. For neuroscientific studies on episodic memory and memory traces. For Bolzano’s notion of memory trace is dynamic: rather than a mental state.8 Part I Introduction To approach the question from another angle. Von Leyden (1960). as well as their Pragueian predecessors. Von Leyden to Jérôme Dokic. W. 9 Bernard Russell (1921). cited below. 9 These authors. a recollection is a complex cognitive act grounded on a disposition or memory trace. it is a trigger which serves to configure our memoryrepresentations. the physiologist Ewald Hering. 8 The debate about traces turns on the following questions: how do traces represent past events and how do we re-identify traces over time? How do traces provide causal continuity between a past event and a present recollection? I will reconstruct Bolzano’s and Hering’s contribution to this debate. John Sutton’s account of distributed memory traces in two theories of autobiographical memory. 7 I argue that these 19th century views are closely related to contemporary accounts of trace theory in philosophy and the neurosciences. 8 Cf. see Tulving and Schacter.. This notion of memory trace anticipates the account developed 30 years later by a fellow Pragueian. in Bolzano’s view. John Sutton (1998). Gilbert Ryle (1949). Jérôme Dokic (2001). focus on this question: is memory is adequately analyzed as retention of knowledge or can it also be a source of knowledge? 7 Ewald Hering (1870)“Ueber das Gedächtnis als eine allgemeine Funktion der organisierten Materie” and Grundzüge der Lehre vom Lichtsinn (1878). The implications of this philosophical discussion concern the conceptual debate about the cognitive role of memory from Russell. . Ryle and W.

that it has had them before”. 2 Cf. with this additional perception annexed to them. as it were. § 20 : :82.3. memory is a “repository” or “storehouse of ideas”. a sort of impression of the per- . II. How do we describe episodic memory or recollection? Bolzano’s reply Philosophical descriptions of memory experience usually combine two models. The second model is related to the power of retrieval or reproduction of ideas and usual involves a series of steps combining several mental acts: in this sense.2:150.CHAPTER ONE BOLZANO ON RECOLLECTION AND MEMORY TRACES 1. 2 Recollection thus involves the retrieval or 1 John Locke (1689) An Essay Concerning Human Understanding. 1 According to Aristotle. episodic memory is an ability to revive our ideas. This gap requires a causal link involving the persistence of a quasiimprint or trace within me. also: “when one wishes to recollect […] he will try to obtain a beginning of movement whose sequel shall be the movement which he desires to awaken” (451b29-30). and “[t]he process of movement (sensory stimulation) involved the act of perception stamps in. as well as a power of the mind “to revive Perceptions. if not a source.10. Nouveaux essais sur l’entendement humain (1765) I. or my experience of “earlier” and “later” and an association of past and present ideas. Locke’s requirement of an accompanying perception is similar to Leibniz’ condition that that our recollection is accompanied by an inner conviction that we have had a certain idea before. which it has once had. recollection presupposes a temporal gap between the occurrence of an event and my recollection of it. The first concerns the retention of information which is considered to be a form. of knowledge. derived from Aristotle and Locke: the “storehouse” model and the “mental capacity” model. accompanied by a belief or judgment that in our past we have experienced the remembered episode. Aristotle: “Acts of recollection are due to the fact that one movement [κίνησις – Sorabji translates ‘change’] has by nature another one that succeeds it” On Memory (451b 11) cf. According to Locke.

on this topic: Richard Sorabji (1971). Erinnerungsvermögen) as a capacity of our soul to renew or revive in t2 a representation (Vorstellung) we had in time t1 (without the circumstances which are necessary for producing the representation a first time). N. since it is derived from the past participle gedacht and.10 Chapter One revival of a past cognition. In German. as it were. both of which are denoted by the German noun Gedächtnis which. 168. 1935) Deutsches Wörterbuch: 188. passim. thought or cognized: “I remember that man who called last night” or: “I remember reading this passage in Locke two months ago”. § 283. 6 This retrieval of a representation is made possible by a cept [τύπος – Sorabji translates “imprint. In this context we may pose the question. but also a source of knowledge? And how do we acquire information in a recollection? 3 1. Bolzano considers episodic memory (Gedächtnis. 3 Dokic (2001). In contemporary German. § 299. as Bolzano does. a capacity of thinking (Denkkraft) and knowing (Erkenntniskraft): this capacity enables the soul to look at the traces left by its own activities. signifies our thinking of something. :222. as well as to retain something previously experienced and recalling it at a later time. [e]ine Vorstellung aus seinem Inneren entnehmen literally . on this Hermann Paul (1896.V: 152. means to think of something previously experienced and recognizing or re-identifying something we are familiar with. the notion of memory (Gedächtnis) is closely related to thinking. WLIII. just as persons do who make an impression with a seal.V: 151-2. 153. Bolzano explains that re-collecting (er-innern) literally means to retrieve or call up a representation (eine Vorstellung aus seinem Inneren entnehmen) and to recall it again in our soul (wiederinnerlich werden). Gedächtnis means a retentive capacity. for we perceive.1: 54. Bolzano’s terminology for describing episodic memory Recollection is the capacity to recall past experiences and to retain information that was acquired in the past. 159. 5 WLIII.4: 51. 4 Cf. in an older sense. think or cognize something we have previously perceived. A. cf. whether episodic memory is not merely a form. Bolzano uses Gedächtnis. I reconstruct Bolzano’s account in section 2. 2002). as well as contemporary dictionaries of the German language such as the Wahrig (1966.1. Erinnerungsvermögen and Erinnerungskraft as synonyms.I. 6 Cf. A. in an older usage. This capacity hence involves retention and retrieval. 5 Our memory’s ‘business’ (Geschäft) is to revive past representations and judgments. cf.2. below. A.2 :50.B. 4 Broadly speaking. He considers memory as a reflexive mental capacity and more specifically. WLIII. of the sense-image”]. § 284.V:146. A. Bolzano parses the verb erinnern and nominalizes the adjective inner.” (450a31-32).

Whereas the former is the standard German word for recollection and means to recall or bring something into our memory. I shall use “recollection” for both nouns.2: 55). cf. V: 152. Perhaps Rückerinnerung denotes cases of recollection which start by thinking of something rather than perceiving it. Bolzano uses two nouns for “recollection”: Erinnerung and Rückerinnerung. Anyhow. II. adding the German Rückerinnerung. The former meaning is also expressed in the reflexive dative used by Goethe: wenn ich mir ihr Wesen erinnerte (cf.On Autobiographical Memory 11 trace of it which has remained in our soul and our power of recollection (Erinnerungsvermögen or Erinnerungskraft) is the capacity to look at these traces. A. WLIII. For lack of an appropriate English translation. § 283. it seems that when using the word Rückerinnerung. . the genitive is gradually replaced by the accusative form and this grammatical shift has caused a semantic shift from the meaning of recollection as “to recall something in memory” to: “to call someone’s attention to something” (as in: ich erinnerte ihn an seine Pflicht). For in this sense.. a recollection is also a judgment.] entnehmen. § 284.” (A. he employs the genitive construction: dass er sich einer ehemals gehabten Vorstellung erinnere emphasizing the possessive relation of ‘having’ between oneself and the representation one has had previously. Bolzano uses the reflexive form of the verb sich erinnern and.4: 50. Bolzano’s use of Rückerinnerung seems akin to Leibniz’s use of ressouvenir. als eine Vorstellung aus seinem Innern [. which is corroborated by his claim that we “raise” the renewed representation to a clear one. The genitive construction also appears in the passages noted above. (Nouveaux Essais. and according to usage. 8 The genitive construction expresses an older meaning of recollection: to retrieve something means: “to retrieve a representation from inside ourselves” and wieder-er-innerlich werden means: “to re-internalize [it] again” (innerlich means either to be located inside: im Inneren – or to get [something] inside: ins Innere). […]. the more unusual composite noun Rückerinnerung expresses a stronger degree of recollection: bringing something back in our memory. Bolzano takes recollection as a form of reasoning. dass wir die Vorstellung A bereits gehabt haben: so wird zu ihrer Entstehung eine Vorstellung von dieser Vorstellung […] erfordert. 7 “eine […] Vorstellung. is when he defines the notion of recollection: “Erinnern. I think Bolzano uses the term Rückerinnerung for emphasizing the repetitive and reflexive aspect of the recollective process: we bring back a representation by re-acquiring or recovering in our soul a representation we have acquired in the past. 8 Cf. The only time he uses the non-reflexive form erinnern.1. I examine this condition below. interestingly. Paul (1896:144).V: 152-154. 7 In addition. welches soviel heissen soll. H. In contemporary usage. Bolzano’s italics). Denn da diese Rückerinnerung ein Urtheil ist. zu einer klaren erheben. § 12: 91. die sich in uns erneuert.“ (WLIII.

V:152.4: 50.V: 152. Thus Bolzano syntactically and semantically combines retention and retrieval when he introduces his conditions for defining recollection: Um also im strengsten Wortverstande sagen zu dürfen. liegt am Tage. § 284. Bolzano’s italics). § § 270-1. §§ 50-52. when we recollect someWLIII. A. uns unserer eigenen Vorstellungen […] uns unter bestimmten Umständen wieder erinnerlich zu werden” (the capacity to recollect again our own representations under certain circumstances).1-6. several conditions must be met. Earlier commentaries include: Hugo Bergmann (1909: 108-112. translation would be: “the capacity to recall again our own representations”. 50-60. 11 Recollection involves a mental capacity for retrieving the representations previously retained. WLIII. Von der mathematischen Lehrart (ML). cf. 13 So. A. 284. 13 WLIII.12 Chapter One in one’s memory. which means retrieving a representation from inside oneself). Bolzano’s italics.13.1 (WLIII.4. for Bolzano. uns unserer eigenen Vorstellungen […] wieder erinnerlich zu werden where he uses the genitive in combination with the adverb “again” and the adjective erinnerlich. § 2. 9 A literal. 12 This is why he defines recollection as: “[…] das Vermögen. on this Jan Berg (1989) in the editor’s introduction to BBGA. The genitive construction combined with the repetitive wieder expresses the double paradigm of the two philosophical memory models. 50. A. also: “Dass sich alle Erinnerung nur auf Ereignisse. V: 152. also im Grunde nur auf unsere eigenen Wahrnehmungen beziehe. und zwar in so fern nur. and Heinrich Fels (1927: 319-448). I. § 48. V. A.” 10 2. vol.V:151. On Bolzano’s distinction between objective and subjective representations cf. where he refers to 10 9 . als eine Vorstellung aus seinem Innern [. § 283. the ‘storehouse’ and the ‘mental capacity’. Reconstructing Bolzano’s account of recollection Bolzano claims that in order for a recollection to occur (entstehen).” (A.] entnehmen. WLI. cf. WLI.3-5. §§ 48. 12 Representations (Vorstellungen) are here intended as mental or subjective representations that someone has. §§ 283. Cf. Bolzano uses the word “event” (Ereignis) in the Athanasia rather than in the Wissenschaftslehre. §§ 269-303) :13 and Andrej Krause (2004: 251-253. and the act of recollecting as a retrieval of representations: “Erinnern. Bolzano underlines this sense even more strongly in: das Vermögen. 152-155. Note that by ‘representations’ he means ‘perceptual representations’. welches soviel heissen soll. also. 285. 11 WLIII.. dass wir uns einer ehemals gedachten Vorstellung wieder erinnern […]: “So that we may say in the strictest sense of the word that we recollect again a representation we had previously thought […]. Cf.” (Recollecting.3. als wie sie wahrgenommen haben. die schon vergangen sind. though rather tortured.

dass er einst jene Wahrnehmung gehabt hat”(A.V. thought or cognized. (1998): 261-281 “Neurocognitive Processes of Human Memory”. Clarendon Press. we are aware of our own perceptions and representations and travel back in our own personal experience: we recall what we did yesterday when we remember it by going back and retrieving that event. for he characterizes Erinnerung as a disposition to be affected by a trace and a capacity to retrieve it. episodic memory differs from all others in that at Time 2. But. Oxford. viz to our own perceptions. deren er eben jetzt ansichtig wird. 14 Bolzano’s 19th Century notion of episodic memory is confirmed by the neurological results obtained by the memory researcher Endel Tulving. and as requiring a trace providing a causal link between a present experience and a past perception. der es aus einer von jener Wahrnehmung in ihm noch immer zurückgebliebenen Spur. that our Ideas are said to be in our Memories. both authors claim that recollection is specific to humans because only a human being representations. 15 A recollection is a renewed representation of a past event and thus can only refer to a past event that we have previously perceived. :265). dass eine gewisse Erscheinung einst von ihm wahrgenommen worden. to revive them again.note 2: 62-64). “The individual does something at Time 1 and remembers it at Time 2. 16 On Aristotle’s account of memory.§ 284. 15 “Nur der erinnert sich eigentlich. 16 In addition. when it will. (1983) Elements of Episodic Memory. its time arrow is no more an arrow. Tulving (1972): 381-403. […]. as a mental act involving perception. 14 For this reason.2. who clarified the concept of episodic memory and the relation between episodic encoding (storage) and episodic retrieval of information in the brain. episodic memory is characterized not only by an autonoetic awareness. WLIII. entnimmt. His first condition is.”Essay. they are actually nowhere. although he cites Empiricist precursors such as Malebranche and Hume on the association of ideas and the law of causality (cf. . :152). but only there is an ability in the Mind. but the type of memory he describes is clearly episodic or autobiographical memory – that is. Sorabji (1971): 1. Bolzano’s account has an Aristotelian undertone. II. recollection only refers to past events in so far as we have perceived them. thus: (1) a subject x has a recollection r´ if and only if x has the capacity to renew or retrieve in t2 a (its own) representation r which x previously had in time t1 (without the circumstances which are necessary for producing r a first time). Bolzano makes no reference to Aristotle. Yet he omits Locke whose account is quite close to his own: “And in this Sense it is. but also by its orientation towards the past: episodic memory is the only memory form that is ‘rearward looking’. Cf. it loops back to Time 1” (1998.On Autobiographical Memory 13 thing. cf.10. In his view. when indeed. Surprisingly. judging and an association of ideas. 35-46. a recollection of our own experience.

for this is renewal from habit which involves learning. cannot be aware of their own experience. In this way Bolzano argues that a nonhuman animal is not aware of its own representations. so fällt es doch. although it is difficult to satisfactorily verify their reflective capacity or lack thereof. Besides. zu fällen. Um so weniger vermag es das Urtheil: Ich habe sie einmal gehabt. solche Vorstellungen seien. d.V: 153. Learning certain skills or ‘knowing how’ to do things involves procedural or nondeclarative memory which is reflexive but not reflective. they cannot go back to the past and recollect it by re-identifying it as their own experience. da es sie hat. A. dass dies erneuerte. cf.h. children under 4 and patients with frontal lobe lesions (responsible for storing source memory about particular times and places and maintaining the coherence of an episodic memory) have no episodic memory: they can learn things and know about them. unlike humans. they do not travel back into their own personal past. it is assumed.h. niemals das Urtheil. Aristotle.14 Chapter One can judge that he or she has already had a certain representation. Bolzano’s italics). 106-7. provided it has learned to associate this person with the food by repeatedly seeing the two together. 18 On this argument. but not recollecting. The upshot is that animals can be trained to perform and to acquire certain motor skills because they have reflexive memory but they cannot reflect upon their own representations or recall when a past performance was rewarded with a tidbit (though they will remember the tidbit). This view is also corroborated by Tulving. denn ob es gleich gehabte Vorstellungen unter gewissen Umständen wieder erneuert. In other words. even if ani17 Animals may be able to renew a representation under certain conditions. d. on this also Daniel Schacter (1996): 188-9 and Squire and Kandel (1999): 24-26. V: 151152. 453a7-14. who claims that animals. wenn wir genau sprechen wollen. . but they cannot recall how they learnt them because they do not remember their own past experience: lacking autonoetic consciousness. by associating two representations. on animals’ capacity of learning. On Memory. 17 One of the distinctions between humans and (non-human) animals exploited by philosophers and scientists alike is based on the self-awareness criterion: only humans have reflective memory because only humans have personal memory and are capable of self-awareness. Sorabji (1971: 41-42). as Pavlov’s experiment shows: a dog can learn or be conditioned to salivate at the sight of an approaching person who had fed the dog in the past. But this assumption is made primarily for showing what humans can do rather than for showing what animals cannot do. die es schon gehabt hat. information is retained unconsciously: we know how to ride a bicycle or how to type on a keyboard and we can learn to expect food when we hear a bell without consciously remembering when and where we learnt to do so.”(A. Cf. es fällt niemals das Urtheil: Ich habe diese Vorstellungen. Animals. den Thieren keine Erinnerung bei. bewusst. Es ist sich überhaupt keiner seiner Vorstellungen selbst in dem Augenblick. 18 “Wir legen daher. animals have no recollection because. even at the time when it has them and it can certainly not be aware of having had a representation before. so viel wir wenigstens glauben.

4). “Remembering that” indicates a doxastic state in my recollection and a cognition: I recognize a representation as having had it in the past. 20 I can fix the reference to a remembered object by means of a memory demonstrative when I assert that I remember this book. und zugleich das Urtheil. I remember that I first went to the library to look for the book and then had an argument with a colleague about Bolzano. dass zur Erinnerung im eigentlichsten Sinne des Wortes eine bloss erneuerte Vorstellung des früheren Ereignisses noch nicht genüge. dasjenige. Cf. For a recollective judgment confirms the truth of my recollection.” (WLIII. hinzukommen müsse. I remember that I borrowed it from the library last week (where I saw it before). also J. Bolzano’s italics). dass er sie schon einmal gehabt habe. A representation without judgment would not suffice to order events as having occurred earlier or later. fälle. sei ein von uns schon einmal wahrgenommenes Ereignis.V: 151. Thus in the judgment: “I remember this book”. was wir uns jetzt vorstellen. they do not have the necessary linguistic competence for making a judgment or expressing their autobiographical recollection of a past event. . In making a recollective judgment I resituate the episode in the context of my personal experience by indicating when and where it occurred and I re-identify a thing as being the same as the one I saw at an earlier time. Hence Bolzano’s second and third conditions for recollection are: (2) r´ is a recollection if and only if x re-identifies r´as r by judging that r´ (a representation of a past event e in t2) = r (e in t1) 19 and (3) x has r´ if and only if x is human. dass er sich einer ehemals gehabten Vorstellung erinnere: so müssen wir bemerken. sondern dass zu derselben das Urteil. § 283. Campbell (2001): 169-186. 20 Presumably (although Bolzano does not say so) such memory judgments also account for the temporal order of a memory experience. my remembering is said of this book. For example. But perhaps this is reading would be too Kantian for Bolzano. is capable of self-awareness and has linguistic competence Why does Bolzano claim that a recollection involves making a judgment that we have had a certain representation before? When I see the book on my desk.” (A. also: “Eben so offenbar ist. namely that I have encountered this representation before and this is 19 “Wenn wir von Jemand sagen sollen. dass er diese Vorstellung jetzt eben wieder habe. Recollective judgments express the relation between a present rememberer and a remembered object by predicating my present consciousness of a past thing.On Autobiographical Memory 15 mals could recall their own experience. cf.

22 WLIII. § 284. temporal or spatial proximity. In §§ 284.a-g: 55-56. However. In section 6 he discusses the necessary connexion which we postulate in order to explain our causal inference (:88). especially Hume. § 284. opposition. he claims that “the only general principles which associate ideas are resemblance.2-6. As for association. So far.3-4. Cf.1. we have to explain how two representations have to be connected in order for one representation to prime or prompt another. Cf. and also habit or the tendency by means of which images can regularly follow each other (though none of these are necessary conditions for all cases of recollections. Bolzano claims that such a connection consists of several relations: when you have a representation r1. this claim is hardly original. also David Hume THN. Sorabji (1971: 44-46).3. I. since Bolzano merely follows in the footsteps of Aristotle and the Empiricists.16 Chapter One why my predication is a re-identification rather than an identification. On Memory (451b19-20) who names the three relations of similarity. or what enables us to infer that there is a causal connection between them. such as stinginess. 22 WLIII. causality or reciprocal interaction (Wechselwirkung) governed by a law of association. Bolzano’s law of association In addition. it can cause you to have a second representation r2 which is (spatially and temporally) contiguous and either similar or opposite to r1. in order to explain how one representation can renew another. on the association of ideas.V: 153-4.” (:93). 2. under a law of association: (4) a representation r´ renews a representation r if and only if r´and r stand in a relation of simultaneity. A. In fact. Bolzano gives the following examples to illustrate the different relations involved in association: (a) the contiguity of two objects we have once thought as connected or interdependent.4. cf. proximity and opposition for association of ideas. (b) the substance-quality relation between a person and an attribute. 21 . for us to have a recollection. Aristotle. this example is based on the assumption that our perception must be of a defining part of the elephant – a perception of an elephant’s eye would hardly have produced the same effect (recalling the elephant’s other parts) as the perception of an elephant’s tooth which is a specific feature enabling us to identify something as an elephant. revival or renewal l. 21 Bolzano groups the relations in (at least one of) which two representations must stand in order to produce a recollection.iii. Bolzano’s second condition corresponds to the declarative nature of episodic memory: we are consciously accessing and retrieving stored information and we can judge that we have had a certain representation before because we can come to know this by accessing our own past. contiguity and causation. So the prompting representation has to be identified as a specific or essential feature. Bolzano gives the example of a part/whole relation: a perception of an elephant’s tooth revives the perception of the remaining parts of an elephant.

(c) the ground/consequence or cause/effect relation: we recall a gun on hearing the shot and vice-versa. but also those of animals. 23 Cf. 24 When I recall a past experience. V: 151-153. if someone gives me some bad news. I may know that black chocolate tastes bitter. since it tells us about the source of our past experience. or vice versa. without remembering that I have previously tasted this chocolate. He adds that by simultaneity he means. It seems that temporal contiguity is the main condition for recollection. WLIII. I should thus be able to identify its source (when and where this experience was acquired) or the time and place when it occurred: rather than remembering the fact that the book on my desk If we have once thought of someone as a miser. (e) the relation of opposition: we see a dwarf and recall a giant. He explains that perceptions are formed when several simultaneous ideas are combined according to the law of reciprocal interaction. (g) the order of precedent and consequent in a sequence (temporal contiguity): if someone recites the first verse of a poem we know by heart. V. A. . which is another way of putting the relation of temporal contiguity. since Bolzano says that we must have had two representations simultaneously or at the same time in order for us to have a subsequent representation which renews either one or the other. that the first representation did not end before the second one had begun.note: 57. § 284. If I see this person a second time. For example. the law of simultaneity (Gesetz der Gleichzeitigkeit). 153-4.On Autobiographical Memory 17 Bolzano’s law of association or renewal of representations specifically addresses the question of how we can make a causal connection between a past event and a present recollection. Bolzano adds the relation of reciprocal interaction (Wechselwirkung) between simultaneous representations as a condition for the renewal of subsequent representations. 23 Both temporal and spatial markers are important features of episodic memory. whereas in the Athanasia he calls it the law of reciprocal interaction (Gesetz der Wechselwirkung). In the Athanasia. we will recall his stinginess whenever we think of him.4. (f) location or spatial proximity: we enter a room where someone close to us has died from a long illness and we recall that person lying in on their deathbed. Episodic memory is distinct from semantic or factual memory precisely because episodic memory is an autobiographical memory with a record of past events and not a retention of general facts of knowledge: if I only have semantic memory. 24 According to Tulving (1972). in such a way that the renewal of one of them also produces a perception of the traces left by anterior perceptions. my new perception of him or her will stir up a recollection of the bad news associated with this person. Bolzano calls the law regulating the associative process in perception. that is. when and where an event occurred. I will receive several simultaneous impressions. in a note to § 286. (d) the relation of similarity: familiar similarities a perceived object shares with others enable us to recall the latter: we see a dog rose and recall a centifolia rose. A. Bolzano adds that this law not only determines our souls. Also. in this case.8. there are two types of long-term memory-systems: episodic and semantic memory. his recital will prompt us to recall the subsequent verses.

Pears favours (2) and I think that vivacity as a property of an idea which enters the mind “in a forcible manner” may.i. THN.iii. be closer to Bolzano’s use of vivacity. In the Athanasia (A. memory ideas obtain their vivacity from the impressions that caused them and memory ideas are more vivid than ideas of the imagination because. they maintain the same order and form as their original impressions. :13). cf. Hume’s System.18 Chapter One belongs to the philosophy library. also Berg’s reconstruction (1989. I remember eating such a piece of black Belgian chocolate on my way to Budapest last April. Bolzano’s law of association or renewal l can be formulated as follows: (5) if two representations r1 and r2 were produced at the same time in our soul and a subsequent representation r3 is produced. the vivacity and frequent occurrence of our representations facilitates their renewal in recollection. nor is it appropriate for prompting a recollection because it lacks the power or capacity to retrieve another representation. on this David Pears (1990) who distinguishes between two readings of vivacity: (1) as a pictorial property (or distinctness of colours) and (2) a behavioural property (a feature of the way in which images enter the mind) in. I. then r3 renews r4 and all the more easily. Cf. when I nearly missed my connection in Belgrade. if r1 or r2 were vivid and occurred frequently or lasted longer. OUP. whose content is the same as (gleichet. as well. but perhaps he intends vivacity as a power of retention and retrieval: a weak or faint representation is not appropriate for retention because it has no staying power and is quickly forgotten. The relations of simultaneity or opposition. to some extent. Degree of vivacity is another (Humean) condition for both the representation that does the renewing and the representation that is renewed.iii. as well as to my present experience: when tasting a piece of black Belgian chocolate. 26 WLIII. unlike the latter.6. According to Hume. 30-45. :154) Bolzano adds temporal duration as a facilitator for recollecting a representation. THN I. V. I. Bolzano’s condition of frequent occurrence has an ancestor in Hume’s constant conjunction or observed regularity between two events we relate as cause and effect. 25 . Hume. einerlei Stoff mit ihr hat) either r1 or r2. I remember that I borrowed the book from that library last week and that I should return it in two days.4.6. Unfortunately we cannot always ascertain whether an idea is a memory rather than a product of the imagination: we cannot check whether our memory idea really corresponds to its original impression because we cannot call back the original impression for a comparison. 25 Bolzano does not elaborate on this. in my recollection of this event. Oxford. 26 Cf. proximity and causality or reciprocal interaction are all involved in maintaining the coherence of my recollection by connecting the contents of a past event to its source.5. cf. In addition. § 284.

as Krause himself remarks. Bolzano’s condition that the renewing representation and the renewed representation must have the same content What does Bolzano mean by “same content”? In Bolzanian ontology. Andrej Krause (2004: 252-3) who reconstructs Bolzano as saying that x has a subjective representation r2 in t2 which has the same objective representation as r1 in t1 and that. consequently. based on l. 27 . §48. if “having a content” means “having a representation as such” then. we can have no numerical identity. two subjective representations or mental events are said to have the same content when they contain the same objective representation (Vorstellung an sich) that is. Complete identity is neither necessary nor useful for Bolzano’s account of recollection and I think that he uses a weaker notion of identity for epistemological purposes. then x has all particular properties or adherences of y. 28 His condition reads: (6) r is a recollection r´ of a past event e in t2 if and only if r´.2. Bolzano’s associationist account uses the ‘mental capacity’ model of memory rather than the ‘storehouse’ model: if he had claimed that one and the same idea Subjective representations have representations as such as their nearest and immediate Stoff (content) (WLI. The upshot of my reading is that in epistemology “having the same content” does not mean “having complete identity” and that here Bolzano does not mean “x and y have the same content” to imply “x and y have the same representation as such”. since we must necessarily have at least two (subjective) representations. ‘having the same representation as such’ implies ‘having a completely identical content’ – which is not necessary for recollections or the renewal of representations and leads to several problems. But this notion of identity is too strong for Bolzano’s epistemology: if x is completely identical with y. a renewing r’ and a renewed r. x is completely identical with y.3) and each subjective representation has a corresponding representation as such (WLI. means “having the same objective representation”. 27 So. § 72). when they exemplify the same idea as such or denote the same sense. precisely because. is a renewed representation of e in t1 and if and only if r΄ and r have the same content (Stoff) c Why do we not have complete identity in a recollection? First. “having the same content”. He is not trying to solve the ontological problem of “x is completely identical with y” in the case of recollections and fortunately so. if x has the same content (representation as such) as y. because such an attempt would result in an inconsistency in his epistemology. 28 But cf.On Autobiographical Memory 19 2. I find Krause’s thorough reconstruction very useful and stimulating. but this aspect of his interpretation is problematic. such that x is identical with y if x has at least one particular property or adherence of y.

3/2: 139-140). In addition. WLIII. 30 Cf. recollections are complex or mixed representations. as Bolzano says. or we can only have a limited number of one and the same ideas. Neither alternative appeals to Bolzano. B. § 300. BBGA.” (Miscellanea Mathematica 4 (1813-1814).” For this reason and according to usage. Cf. WLIII. The sameness of conceptual content can be accounted for by linguistic concepts: two subjective conceptual representations can belong to the same type of objective representation. for mental events are unrepeatable and temporary: they appear and disappear in our minds. he does not appeal to perceptual universals to account for the qualitative sameness of two subjective perceptual representations.12). which he also calls sensations (Empfindungen) and which we usually call perceptions in contemporary scientific English. WLI. Bolzano begins his discussion of recollection with the assumption that our representations can end and disappear. they have both conceptual and perceptual content or. Second. “fly past our mind” with a frequency too high for us to grasp all of their individual parts. § 286. they are partly composed of intuitions (Anschauungen). (Briefwechsel Bolzano-Exner). But if recollections are partly composed of perceptions. If he had done so. whenever we renew them.20 Chapter One is first retained and then retrieved.7. 29 .. Bolzano’s letter to Exner. 30 Intuitions are not only singular.1. vol. that is. nicht weiter zerlegbare Vorstellung. However. 29 This feature of recollections will be expounded in section 3. BBGA III. he would also have had to account for the survival or persistence of this idea and the claim that we have the same idea now as we had yesterday. he would have incurred the risk of inconsistency. Either our memory can store an unlimited number of unchanging items. § 283. WLIII. Bolzano does not distinguish between sensations and intuitions. […]. Bolzano must also account for the sameness of perceptual content. also WLI. Bolzano even says that there are representations. Wissenschaftliche Tagebücher. Moreover. but simple representations and two simple representations cannot have the same content because they are their Cf. the Latin derivative intuition is mainly used in a non-scientific sense: “to have a hunch. rather than “intuition”. § 72. vol. below.1833. cf. which is the premiss for his argument that every representation leaves a certain trace after it has disappeared. Bolzano assimilates intuition (Anschauung) and perception (Wahrnehmung) as data of experience and as immediate or noninferential cognitions (cf. welche ein Wesen von seinem Zustande hat. in contemporary English.8 I discuss this paragraph in regard to colour sensations in Kasabova (2004): 247-276. 9.4:13. was man sonst auch. as Empfindung and Anschauung are synonyms for him: “Mit diesem Namen [Anschauung] bezeichnen wir jede einfache. II. § 73. und vielleicht deutlicher Empfindung genannt hat. also eben das. especially generic representations of sensation. I occasionally use the words “perception” or “perceptual content”. which. In fact.

follows that different representations have the same content in the sense that they share a part. for each subjective intuition has its own objective counterpart. My suggestion is. two subjective representations have the same content. Semon (1904) Die Meme. WLI § 92. For instance. rather than their cause. Bolzano says that from his definition of a representation as the collection or sum of its components without regarding their order. a weak notion of identity.On Autobiographical Memory 21 content. So (7) r΄ and r have the same content c if and only if r and r´ have a common part The upshot of Bolzano’s view is that an overlap of features and a partwhole relation are required for memory retrieval and that association is not a sufficient condition for explaining this process. See also R.1. Cf. 33 Cf. On this reading. 32 For this reason they are not only unrepeatable but incommunicable. so something else must account for sameness of content in recollections. such that ‘x and y have the same content’ means ‘x is identical with y if x has at least one particular property or adherence of y’. WLI. 31 And any two intuitive representations or sensations are numerically different. where ‘part’ is a feature or non-independent property of the ‘whole’. Bolzano says that the same intuition cannot occur twice. This view was advanced by Sir William Hamilton in 1859 (who coined the notion of redintegration) and developed by Richard Semon in 1904. with two different objective intuitions. so two subjective intuitions cannot belong to the same objective intuition. as well as the concept of similarity. . § 92. their features overlap and our association of them is a consequence of this overlapping. § 75. first. x and y have the same content’ means ‘x and y have a common part’. WLI. 33 This is his argument for the claim that in the case of recollections. If two representations have a common part. where a concept with a lesser extension represents or stands for a concept with a larger extension. the expression ‘hired hands’ represents workmen. but memory retrieval occurs by means of the whole-part relation in which the cue represents an essential part of the whole – as in a rhetorical figure called synecdoche. ‘wheels’ represent a car. 34 I suggest that Bolzano anticipates their idea that a whole is re-instated via a part. For example. two intuitions cannot possibly have the same content. the representations [equilateral pentagon] and [equiangular hexagon] share the component [polygon].1 34 See Daniel Schacter (2001: 168-174). Hence. We explain the overlap by recurring to the empirical law of association. Since Bolzano rejects the 31 32 Cf.

According to Roman texts by Cicero and Quintillian. then x is a part of y. what. is the common part of a past representation and its renewal in a present recollection? On my reading of Bolzano. then a presentation of x enables our recollection of y. or I can recall one of Shakespeare’s sonnets if I am prompted with the line: “Let me not to the marriage of true minds admit impediments”. Our knowledge is organized on the basis of our imaging capacity. Richard Sorabji (1971: 22-34). According For a discussion of mnemonic techniques in the anonymous Rhetorica ad Herennium.3. The ‘redintegration’ claim corresponds to mnemonic techniques such as the place system or memory theatre. Quintillian’s Institutio Oratoria. Probably the basic principle at work in such part-whole organization is semantic: a law governing different semantic roles for connecting words (or numbers) to images in a hierarchical order. precisely. 2.. Cicero’s De Oratore and later works by Ramon Lull et al. he does not hold that if x is an essential feature of y. of course. for retrieval is selective. 35 . the Pythagorean number triangle or Lull’s circles that serve to compute features and symbols in a context (the place system) by enabling different combinations or calculations. such as the tree of knowledge. Instead. he argues that if x is an essential part of y. see Frances Yates (1966). I can recall my childhood home by attending to a specific image of a house. so that: (8) r΄ and r have the same content c if and only if r΄ is retrieved from a trace t of r For the renewed representation of a past event is a revival of the representation from which it originates. Wolfgang Wildgen (1998). a place system involves memorizing and visualizing a street of houses or the rooms of a house as a ‘background’ for situating or mapping the main points in a speech onto the different places in the memory theatre fixed in our minds. 35 We then move from place to place as we recollect the various parts of our speech or poem from the rooms or figures we have used to retain them. To put the matter differently: we have two numerically different representations of one and the same past event: this event is compressed in a memory trace left behind by the representation and this latter can be retrieved or renewed without the circumstances necessary for producing it a first time. The memory trace The next question is. this common part shared by r and r´ is the memory trace.22 Chapter One claim of structural isomorphism.

§ 283. richtiger aber eine Erneuerung oder Wiederholung. § 284. Cf. more correctly called a renewal. muss doch gewiss nur eine von dieser Vorstellung hinterbliebene Nachwirkung seyn. memory traces are effects of events. […]: so dürfen wir die Natur jenes Etwas. das die Erweckung einer vergangenen Vorstellung in uns befördert. 38 So a trace is the residue of a representation we look at in ourselves in order to recollect our own experience of a past event. Bolzano’s italics). for an earlier representation is renewed as I look at the trace it left behind in my soul. 36 As we saw above. Cf. uns fähig macht. Bolzano’s italics).1. von welcher sie herrühren. Hence traces could be considered as akin to events. also: “[…] so gewiss ist es auch. III :88. dass sie unter Hinzutritt günstiger Umstände das Erscheinen einer Vorstellung bewirken. nicht völlig zu vertilgende Spur oder Nachwirkung von sich hinterlasse. die eben darum dieselbe Vorstellung.On Autobiographical Memory 23 to Bolzano. the most important effect of memory traces is that they can cause the appearance of a representation which has the same content as that from which it originates and this is why it is the same representation. since they depend on internal 36 “Die wichtigste [Wirkung der Spuren] ist. also Bolzano’s note 30: 88.1. § 283. Nichts von allem.” (WLIII. 49-50.” (WLIII. Hence: (9) x renews r´ if and only x looks at (anschaut) t (r(e in t1 c1)) in t2 (and r´ has c2) It seems that for Bolzano. dass es ganz ohne Nachwirkung bliebe. selbst wenn sie schon lange aus unserm deutlichen Bewusstsein wieder verdrängt ist. noch näher dahin erklären. welches von einer Vorstellung in unserer Seele zurückbleibt. dass jede dieser Vorstellungen [einer mit Vorstellungskraft begabten Substanz]. oder wenn sie zu diesem deutlichen Bewusstsein gar niemals gediehen war – eine gewisse. es sey ein Etwas von solcher Art. I. in section 1.4: 51-52. 37 WLIII. ein Wiederaufleben oder Wiedererwachen derselben genannt wird. V: 152.3-4.” A. A: 298300. die einerlei Stoff mit derjenigen hat. A. 37 A memory trace is the after-effect (Nachwirkung) of a representation or the result of an internal change which prompts the revival of a past representation in us and enables us to produce it more easily and with a higher degree of vivacity. was je ein Gegenstand unserer Vorstellung wurde […] kann von uns so vergessen werden. The condition sine qua non of this renewal is the trace.. durch dessen Betrachtung uns eine Vorstellung von der Vorstellung A entstehet. Dass wir nun dieses Etwas eine von der vergangenen Vorstellung zurückgebliebene Spur nennen. in that they are persistent after-effects of certain changes in us. . sie künftig leichter in einem höheren Grade der Lebhaftigkeit zu erzeugen. […]. repetition or revival of the sourcerepresentation. Bolzano defines recollection as a renewal of a representation of a past event. 38 “Etwas.

§ 72. § 220. in the nervous system. since he does not qualify traces as adherences. for the latter are not a-temporal. but stored fragments of an episode. on this Krause (2004: 173) who claims that there is an ambiguity in Bolzano’s account of traces. namely that they appear to be real properties (wirkliche Beschaffenheiten) or adherences of substances as well as persistent and after-effects which can never be completely erased. Schacter (1996: 70-71). ‘engram’. But cf. 41 And even if they were. 40 Cf. this trace.” Remarks on the Philosophy of Psychology. On intuitions as representations of a mental change in us which is their immediate object. that is to say. Bolzano rejects the idea of a structural isomorphism between Since mental changes are the immediate object of our intuitions or perceptions and intuitions are representations of the mental change at their origin. below). On distinguishing between memory and the trace. but I don’t think this is a problem for Bolzano. he would have to infer it from this impression. however. a consequence. cf. whereas the former are their persisting left-overs: unlike representations. Cf. 39 . of a substance endowed with the power of representation (Vorstellungskraft). an impression. Whatever the event does leave behind. 39 Thus traces are not immediate effects of an external object but internal after-effects of representations and as such they are not spatially located marks in the brain but changes encoded by our nervous system or stored residues of representations which are not representations themselves.I. cf. vol. But then when someone remembered an event. I agree that these two features are inconsistent. If traces were adherences or properties. is misleading. and Hering (1870 :179. discussed in section 4. Traces may be dependent on us. on this also Sutton (1998: 301). traces do not represent past events because they are not reproductions or copies of past events. 40 In a way. Here Bolzano is in line with contemporary trace theorists who reject the view that memory is an activated picture of a past event. they would have to be properties of ourselves. Krause points out that the a-temporal persistence of traces is inconsistent with their being adherences. the trace left by a representation (which is partly perceptual) cannot be a property or adherence. it isn’t the memory.24 Chapter One changes and Bolzano defines perceptual representations or intuitions as changes in us. also J. WLI. traces have (a-)temporal persistence. 41 This is a possible Bolzanian reply to Wittgenstein’s famous objection against memory traces which is based on the assumption that traces are memories or reproductions of past events: “An event leaves a trace in the memory: one sometimes imagines this as if it consisted in the event’s having left a trace. for it denotes a pictorial representation stored as a result of a nervous reaction. Sutton (1998 : 301) who argues that traces are not copies or representations of past events. For the latter can end and disappear. On Bolzano’s view. but that dependency does not make them our properties. As if one could say: even the nerves have a memory. cf. also Max Deutscher (1989): 53-72. which is not the same thing as the memory of an episode. the contemporary word for traces.

“a representation is clear if we represent it to ourselves by way of an intuition. 44 “Wir müssen also die Vorstellung A. Second. They are persistent states because they are at rest. they could not be parts of stored past events. unlike the change that caused them. anschauen.2. Bolzano sees traces as states that contribute to recollection by accounting for causal continuity across the temporal gap between the time of the event’s occurrence and the time of its recollection. The entire passage is cited below.” WLIII. die Ruhe aber als die von einer Vorstellung hinterbliebene Spur ansehe. an “unconscious representation” (bewusstlose Vorstellung) is a “representation of which we do not have an intuition” (WLIII. Bolzano’s italics). § 280. § 284. Note that Bolzano uses the older word “bewusstlos” which literally means “without consciousness”. die sich in uns erneuert hat. Recollection as form and source of knowledge Bolzano says that a recollection becomes a cognition as we attend to the representation we have retrieved or renewed by means of the trace it left behind: for by looking at the renewed representation.4.3. By contrast. instead of “unbewusst” which means “unconscious”. we raise it to a clear one.note 4). Bolzano claims that we raise a representation to a cognition when we perceive it or when we are conscious of it. 43 2.2: 55. representations are not images of their objects and their respective parts do not coincide. For Bolzano. since they persist a-temporally. In one of his notes. § 280. It is interesting that Bolzano also considers the representation itself as a change or movement and the trace it leaves behind as stillness or repose (Ruhe). 42 Traces are neither representations nor images of past experiences and even if they were parts of representations.On Autobiographical Memory 25 representations and their objects: first. so mit zu einer klaren Vorstellung erheben.” Miscellanea philosophica 5 (1828-1839): 27. as well as “without knowing” or “instinctive”. Rather. “während ich die Vorstellung selbst als eine Veränderung oder Bewegung betrachte. He also says that an intuition becomes clear when we direct our attention towards it or when we become aware of it. §§ 63-64. the parts of representations do not coincide with the representations of the features or properties of the object they denote. cf.” (WLIII. Bolzano rejects Herbart’s claim that representations are something at rest (etwas Ruhendes). And a clear representation is a cognition. 44 We may now give a tentative answer to a question put at the beginning of this paper: is recollection also a source or only a form of knowledge? Bolzano writes: “Das Wort Erinnerung […] bedeutet ja doch ein Erkennen. 43 42 . WLIII. The characterization of cognition as degrees of clarity goes back to Leibniz: a clear representation is sufficient for cognition. das aus der Betrach- See WL I. § 284.

since it carries (non-conceptual) information originally acquired by the subject (225-232). for a cognition of a past experience is produced by looking at one’s own mental state. my cognition is not of the past event. Bolzano holds that episodic memory is reflexive. 46 We should keep in mind. Bolzano’s italics. 48 This ground comprises two beliefs: we must believe that the memory is an accurate reproduction of the original event.” (WLIII. since it refers to my previous experience and thus reveals its own source. that the retrieval of past information is prone to error. but of the present trace of that event. 47 He immediately adds that such a judgment is not sufficient for a recollection either.” 45 The word recollection signifies a cognition which is produced by a self-reflective act: my looking inside myself retrieves a past event when I cognize my past experience by looking at my past and retrieving an event from my own experience. 48 “Es kommt nämlich auch auf den Erkenntnisgrund an. So knowledge is acquired. If we have a new cognition in a recollection. He argues that episodic memory is also a source of knowledge. Owing to this reflexive nature. we have to be able to say that we have had a certain representation before (following Bolzano’s conditions (2) and (3). a recollection involves making a judgment that we have had a certain representation before. or rather.4: 51. Bolzano’s conditions (2) and (3) discussed above (8-9). since we can judge that we have had a certain representation before without actually recalling it. below. re-acquired. above). 47 Cf. in a recollection since a new cognition of an old experience is created by means of a selfreflective act: (10) therefore x has r´ (and r´ is a cognition or clear representation). In addition. So a recollection also depends on the cognitive ground (Erkenntnisgrund) from which our judgment is derived. however. since it is informative about the past. § 283. on this Dokic (2001: 213-232) who explores an intermediary position between the view that memory is purely preservative and the view that memory is a genuine source of knowledge. § 283. I return to these points in section 3. Cf. But self-reflection alone is insufficient for answering the question: how is my memory knowledge grounded? According to Bolzano.4: 51). More precisely. 46 45 . if and only if x can (re)produce in the present a past experience by means of a self-reflective act.26 Chapter One tung unsers Inneren hervorgeht. then recollection can be considered a source of knowledge. that is. for episodic memory we have to be capable of self-consciousness or autonoetic awareness. a recollection is not only a form of knowledge. aus dem wir dies Urtheil ableiten. Besides. we WLIII.

this inference is not a recollection of my pain.2: 51.3. although these had not been included in the script. I think that such an experiment is hardly conclusive about how children’s memory works. “Car cette persuasion où l’on est intérieurement certain qu’une telle idée a été auparavant dans notre esprit est proprement ce qui distingue la réminiscence de toute autre voie de pensée. For example. since memory is not immune to distortion. in: Ceci (1995): 91-125 “False beliefs: some developmental and clinical considerations”. 49 But what is the epistemic value of episodic memory? One problem is. Tulving’s characterization of episodic memory (1983: 127) Cf. but correctly identify the representation as Cf. Compare on this Leibniz’ claim that recollection requires an inner conviction that such an idea has been in our mind before and that this inner conviction is the criterion for distinguishing between remembering and all other ways of thinking. An inference is needed if we do not remember an event: if I consider the swelling on my arm and draw the conclusion that I broke my arm in the past and certainly endured great pain. § 284. Ceci concludes that misleading information not only distorts children’s memories about personally experienced events. Stephen Ceci’s example of an experiment where pre-school children were asked to report on a visit to a pediatrician and their vaccination a year after the event.On Autobiographical Memory 27 must believe that this event belongs to our own past and that we directly experienced the memory we are reliving. But I remember that I broke my leg as a child if and only if my memory is not based on the testimony of older people who were around me during my childhood. WLIII. The interviewer inoculated them with false memories by means of suggestive questions about non-events: they were reminded that they had been shown a poster or told a story and the children would include this in their report. but also influence their memories for non-suggested events related to the suggested events. Bolzano proceeds by eliminating testimony and reasoning as possible grounds for recollection. 50 49 . § 20 (1990: 82). as well as other events. such as a check-up of their ears and nose. then I do not make a judgment about the identity of the person who was watching that event. 51 These are Bolzano’s examples. I can know that I broke my leg as a child without recalling my own experience of that event. cf. the correctness of my judgment is warranted by my self-identification: if I judge that I recall how I was watching a coronation as a child.” Nouveaux essais I. 50 Our self-reflective awareness must be accompanied by a grounded belief or judgment: we have to have good reasons to believe that we are remembering an event from our own past. 51 Bolzano also makes an interesting point in the Athanasia: in cases of recollection which start by thinking of something rather than perceiving it (Rückerinnerung). but it is a useful illustration of perceptual and judgmental errors due to misinformation and memory distortion. illusion and misinformation. how to verify whether we have had a certain representation before.

eine Anschauung von A erfordert. Bolzano’s italics. und diese muss also in eben demselben Subjecte. dass wir die Vorstellung A bereits gehabt haben: so wird zu ihrer Entstehung eine Vorstellung von dieser Vorstellung und dies zwar eine nur auf sie allein beziehende Vorstellung. die sich in uns erneuert hat. then it is only a renewal of my past representation which I have retrieved. Bolzano examines the problem of personal identity which I do not go into here. In other words. Fällen wir aber dies Urteil. und fällen wir es aus der Betrachtung eines in unserer Seele selbst befindlichen Grundes: so erhält dies Urtheil den Namen einer Erinnerung. it is the trace which warrants the direct derivation of my recollection from a past event. Thus. wie ich als Knabe den Feierlichkeiten einer Krönung zugesehen habe. dies sey eine Vorstellung. wie meine gegenwärtige. 53 This statement is taken from an important passage on recollection in the Wissenschaftslehre: “Denn da diese Rückerinnerung ein Urtheil ist. dass wir das Urtheil.) Parts of this passage are cited above. § 284. 52 But Bolzano’s point does not solve the problem: my certainty that I am remembering a past event is not sufficient for warranting that my representation is truly of a past incident and or that my recollection comes directly from a past experience. die gegenwärtig urtheilt. since it is the trace which enables us to retrieve that event from our experience: (11) therefore x has a recollection r´ if and only if x judges that r´ (e in t2 c2) = r (e in t1c1) and if and only if x’s judgment is grounded on a perception of t The successful retrieval of a past event involves a perceptual act: Bolzano says that we remember it when we attend to the trace of the past rep52 “Irre ich nicht in dem Urtheile. we cannot rule out memory distortion. fällen. so muss auch diejenige Substanz in mir. I: 49-50). is our present attentive perception of a trace of a past event: so in his view. d.2: 55. Aber auch. dass ich mich dessen noch erinnere. welche die Vorstellung von diesen Feierlichkeiten in meinem Knabenalter aufgefasst habe. Wir müssen also die Vorstellung A. wenn die Erneuerung einer ehemals gehabten Vorstellung zu einer klaren Vorstellung erhoben wird. ist es noch nicht die Folge. 53 The cognitive ground on which our memory judgment is based. so ist sie nur eine Erneuerung jeher ehemaligen. if my present representation of the coronation ceremony is correct.” (WLIII. anschauen. Denn ist mein Urtheil wahr.h. noch immer die nemliche sein. […]. Bolzano claims that we make a recollective judgment “aus der Betrachtung eines in unserer Seele selbst befindlichen Grundes”. . die wir schon ehemals gehabt haben.28 Chapter One mine. und dass uns somit eine Erinnerung werde. stattgefunden haben” (A. so mit zu einer klaren Vorstellung erheben. habe ich die gegenwärtige Vorstellung von jenen Feierlichkeiten wirklich aus der Erinnerung.

Perhaps Bolzano would agree with Campbell and Dokic that our episodic memory is a source of knowledge in the sense that it is “the faculty of reproducing in the present a past informational state”. 54 In this way he distinguishes between “remembering” and “just knowing” the past. 55 54 . The distinction is Tulving’s (1972. Schacter’s (1996) discussion of various views and experiments confirming the role of attention in recalling visual information and the importance of the latter in recollection (23-25 and notes 9-14: 310-311). 1985). Consequently.On Autobiographical Memory 29 resentation of that event. 56 Intuitions are reflexive effects of our attention: they represent the mental change and their immediate object is this mental change. The cognitive ground on which our memory judgments are based is therefore warranted by our attentive perception of the trace of a mental state. V: 154-155. the perception or attention involved in retrieving a past event has cognitive value. 57 Dokic (2001: 227. Such a reproduction is a cognition. Bolzano writes that an intuition is “the nearest and immediate effect of our attention”. when we attend to the trace left by a representation. it also causes intuitive representations or immediate cognitions which represent the mental state or change at their own origin. 55 To put it another way: episodic memory involves an awareness of having had past experiences and this awareness is characterized by visual perceptions. it retrieves the very representation it once produced. For Bolzano. when our attention is directed onto the trace of a past intuitive representation (or mental change). we also retrieve visual perceptions about this person or event. we are aware of having had a past experience. whenever we direct it “upon the change that is caused in our soul”. since a new cognition is produced. informing us about the past. A person or event can appear familiar even if we are unable to recall or place them.2: A. 56 WLI. when we successfully retrieve a memory image of what we did last week. § 72. In addition. For example: sometimes we just know someone or something without recollecting any visual information about them. So. 57 For this is precisely what he intends when using the word Rückerinnerung or reacquiring (bringing back) information acquired in the past. for it is informative and it is informative because it presents information previously acquired. On the psychological distinction between remembering and knowing the past. Attention not only produces memory-cognitions. cf. cf. Our attention revives the trace of a representation it produced in the past and thus reproduces a past representation in the present. § 284. Bolzano does not say whether we can also have intuitions without attention. attention is a perceptual act. But if we remember them. Dokic’s italics) refers to Campbell (1994: 233). WLIII.

§ 72. Recollections as nested experiences with non-conceptual contents Bolzano claims that recollections are complex or mixed representations containing a perception of a trace of a representation previously perceived. Besides. Recollections are mixed representations because they have perceptual as well as conceptual content or. WLIII.1. 3. . Here I consider the latter kind. or the representation that leaves a trace. since we cannot discriminate all our sensations because they “fly past our mind” with a 58 Bolzano considers mixed representations those which are obtained from intuitions. as Bolzano says. Intuitions directly present a mental change caused by a real object. he uses recollection to explain the cognitive process of identification. § 73). WLI. 326-7.8. In addition. 59 Cf. In other words. WLI. I examine this problem in regard to Bolzano’s account of colour sensations in Kasabova (2004: 247-276). their one object being a mental state which I look at (Anschauung). § 73). 60 Cf. Bolzano considers intuitions as non-conceptual representations which are simple and singular. § 286. Some implications of Bolzano’s theory In this section I examine some implications of Bolzano’s characterization of recollection and his account of the memory trace and I argue that a dialogue can easily be staged between his views. 60 On his view. ML. they are partly composed of intuitions. the change in me. he says that we can grasp or recognize what takes place before our eyes by recollecting past representations whose traces we perceive in our mind. or “this A”. since we recognize that which we recollect. our perceptual content is non-conceptual. below. which is why intuitions are expressed by demonstratives. § 3. it is incommunicable and only partly expressible. 58 The intuitive part has a non-conceptual content. WLI. 59 Bolzano’s notion of non-conceptual content is based on the view that our perceptual experience contains more than we can discriminate conceptually. such as [the rose which spreads this fragrance] or [this rose] (cf. this red. early 20th Century phenomenolgy and current anglo-saxon debates in philosophy about episodic memory at the turn of the 20th Century. mixed representations are “mixed” in the sense that they have a non-conceptual or intuitive component (cf. The usual English translation of gemischt as “complex” effaces Bolzano’s distinction between zusammengesetzte and gemischte representations: the former are conceptual. whereas the latter are partly intuitive.30 Chapter One 3. such as “this red”. quoted in note 76. § 6. although we perceive more than we remember. ML. Since this content is nonconceptual. cf.

62 N. an early 20th Century phenomenologist from Leipzig who describes recollections as nested experiences (Schachtelerlebnis). we cannot identify all colour sensations induced by the individual colour hues. Nonetheless. The conceptual part of a recollection is my judgment that in the past I have experienced the remembered event and my identifying a recollection. 206-209. they fly past our mind with such a speed that our intuitive faculty does not have enough time to grasp the individual parts. means that I intentionally grasp my earlier experience. Linke’s point is that representations. we grasp (erfassen) a previous experience as the object of our representation. as once having sounded in (hineintönender) my con61 “It is true that we compose all our complex representations ourselves by means of a personal activity. F. “I recall the tone I heard previously”. § 281). 62 This account of recollection as a nested experience is an ancestor of early German phenomenology as well as recent investigations by authors such as Dokic and Campbell. §§85-86. As we saw above. our representational states are complex. It is common. Compositional structure is one of the criteria for representational states specified by José Luis Bermúdez’ (1998) in his theory of non-conceptual content: 94. the tone is given mediately.B. such as recollections. but there is an earlier account of memory experience as nested experiences (Schachtelerlebnisse) by P. this judgment must be grounded on a perception of the trace. even though we may be unaware of all their components. we compose those representations ourselves and thus can subsequently recognize the renewed representations. my translation). Cf. even if we are conscious of the ideas themselves (cf. The upshot of Bolzano’s view is that that our perceptual experience has non-conceptual contents which are representational. even without identifying their individual parts. for in our recollective activity. that we can no longer identify their parts. are intentional experiences and that nesting (Schachtelung) is a criterion for distinguishing between representations and perceptions (Wahrnehmungen). I discuss these criteria in relation to recollection below.” (WLIII. This hierarchical account of episodic memory was first developed by Linke. . 63 The notion of “nesting” was coined by J. where a perceptual experience is embedded in an intentional experience. or that representation already takes place at a non-conceptual level. For example. in t2 as a representation of a past event that occurred in t1. In my recollection.8. for instance. For Bolzano. but it does not follow from this that we are always conscious (bewusst) of the parts of such ideas. also his 1995 paper: 183-216.On Autobiographical Memory 31 frequency too high for us to grasp them individually. § 286. J. a recollection is thus a complex or nested experience composed of several levels or steps. especially with representations that we have formed in early childhood and have frequently repeated since. 61 This is why. Linke (1929). 63 In a recollection. This is because whenever we renew these representations. Gibson (1979).

The Bolzano-Linke account fits Dokic’s view that episodic memory is the experience of directly re-acquiring information: “when I remember something in the episodic sense. 66 Bolzano and Campbell characterize episodic memory as dependent on grounding and reflexive condition which must be met in order for memory to yield knowledge. See Dokic (2001: 228. 67 I must have informational access other than by testimony or inference in order for my recollection to be a source of knowledge. 67 See Campbell (1994: 236-239). I am aware of referring to the source of my previous experience (which is nested in my recollection).” 68 64 65 See Linke (1929. since we have to be able to identify a past experience as our own: when I say that I remember drinking a glass of red wine last night. I presently grasp or directly re-acquire the auditory sensations from my past experience (without being presently aware of the event itself). I have a piece of information which presents itself as being directly re-acquired from my past experience”. According to Bolzano’s conditions (2) and (3). selfawareness is necessary for episodic memory. § 86: 209). The two authors also agree on the reflexive condition on knowledge or our previous awareness of a past event. unless I make it in virtue of my having had some access to that polishing. for example. As Campbell puts it: “the dependent character of memory means that [the judgment that I saw the butler polishing the revolver] does not count as knowledge.32 Chapter One sciousness. Similarly. 65 Bolzano’s account of recollection as comprising a judgment which is grounded on a perception. also foreshadows Campbell’s stepwise conception of memory. Campbell’s “ground-floor” condition on memory-knowledge corresponds to Bolzano’s condition (11) that our recollection must be grounded on a perception. 64 I am presently aware of the tone I heard and this awareness is nested or grounded in my previous awareness of a past event. I saw him doing it. 66 See Campbell (1994: 233). according to Campbell. Dokic’s italics). 68 Campbell (1994: 239). whether memory yields knowledge depends on our way of finding out about a past event. but my earlier experience directly presents itself as having been experienced by me. according to which memory judgments are grounded on an informational content. There must be a direct link between my present memory and my past experience. otherwise than through memory. . What is required is that.

69 Bolzano can make this claim because of his tracetheory: the memory trace guarantees the link between past and present. See Bermúdez (1998: 94) who names the following criteria for describing representational states: “They should serve to explain behaviour in situations where the connections between sensory input and behavioral output cannot be plotted in a lawlike manner. They should admit of cognitive integration.On Autobiographical Memory 33 If there is a direct link between my past experience and present memory. for it enables us to grasp a memory-experience. our memory experience becomes a representational state allowing us to make the recognitional judgement that we have had this representation before. satisfy most of the criteria formulated by José Luis Bermúdez for describing representational states. They should be compositionally structured in such a way that their elements can be constituents of other representational states. The trace enables our memory to attune to certain informational states and to fill in the patterns of a past event. Bolzano would agree with Dokic that this link is not continuous from past to present and at best guarantees that the relevant memory can be gained or collected. since they configure our memory representations and can be part of other representations than the one we presently retrieve.” I have slightly modified the order of these criteria in applying them to Bolzano’s description of recollections and I omit the first criterion because it is quite obvious that in recollections the connections between sensory input and behavioural output cannot be plotted in a lawlike manner and consequently it would be begging the question to say that recollections explain our behaviour in such situations. Hence recollections satisfy the requirement that representational states have a compositional structure such that their elements can be constituents of other perceptual states. . The trace carries the coreinformation or patterns of a past episode which are combined with present information when we recollect what we did or whom we saw yesterday. in order to recollect a past representation. I advance the claim that the Bolzano-Linke account of memory experience as intentional. we need to look at the trace it left behind. traces can be constituents of different perceptual states. a memory experience is representational if and only if the given states are compositionally structured in such a way that we can recognize similar situations and make certain primitive forms of inference. In this way. More importantly. According to Bolzano’s condition (9). meaning that representational states can interact and that we are enabled to recognize similarities be69 70 See Dokic (2001: 228). Traces thus also interact with other representational states. so we can safely assume that Bolzano’s recollections satisfy Bermúdez’ requirement that representational states admit of cognitive integration. They should permit the possibility of misrepresentation. 70 First.

Bermúdez’ point is headed in a different direction than mine: for him. The trace a representation left behind is re-combinable with elements of other representational states. a representational state must have correctness conditions allowing for the possibility of error.2. The trace serves as a link between experience and recognition and. In addition. Interactions between representational states are too complex to be invariable. we may even produce false recollections. recollections can be further distorted by misinformation: if a false cue is planted in our more distant memory. such as quarrelling about a toy car that never existed. as memory researchers point out. cf. or even a scene involving another toy or occurring at a different place. recollections are reconstructions allowing for misrepresentations or distortions and in this way they satisfy a further Bermúdezian requirement for representational states. because they allow for confabulation. Bolzano stipulates the requirement that a recollection must have the same content as the past representation. some retrieved parts or traces could belong to a different event involving the same participants: we may recall a quarrel ensuing between the child and her playfellow who wanted to recuperate the car. hence the possibility of misrepresentation. also Schacter (1996. 1995: 197-198. enables us to retrieve a recollection.34 Chapter One tween them. . remembering a recent event such as a child playing with a toy car. For in conditions (6) and (7). Rather. for we do not simply reactivate the trace or fragments left behind by a past representation of the event. Memory distortion Depending on what cues are available to us as we recollect the episode. a retrieval is not without complications.4: 98-133) and Elizabeth Loftus (1999) “Remembering what never happened”: 106-118. Since retrieval is a reconstructive process where memories 71 On memory distortion cf. Consider. 71 3. 72 Admittedly. 1998: 84. as I have shown above. 72 Recollections (and memory traces) easily satisfy his criterion for allowing the possibility of misrepresentation. for example. Retrieving this event requires combining different kinds of information and re-assembling them into a consistent reconstruction of the scene. In other words. Bermúdez’ point about the connection between representation and misrepresentation is that we can misrepresent the environment. However. such as the suggestion that a similar event occurred to us in our childhood. if prompted. retrieval modifies memory. ch. meaning that the renewing representation and the renewed representation must have a common part which is the trace.

2. neuromodulatory systems. 74 Cf. recollecting something is distinct from knowing that something is true. Or. but this distinction between recollecting something and just knowing it does not imply that recollections have no epistemic links to our past. since they are constructions which are intimately related to our self-awareness. 75 The question is.G. but if their order or timCf. 75 Cf. for remembering is a subjective experience.F. to put it differently. my discussion in section 2. if I am asked to recollect the events at New Year’s Eve ten years ago. 154-155 on attention and possible memory distortions. manipulated and even created. and A. V. as is our “history”. we can also remember things that did not happen. In defense of a constructivist model of episodic memory.” False memories can be created in different ways. 73 . we should question the theoretical paradigm which unquestioningly presupposes a one-to-one correspondence between past experience and present recollection. McGaugh (1995) “Emotional activation. it may be because the retrieval of cues is slightly modified or rearranged each time we recall or re-tell a past event. how do we extract a memory-trace and how do we construct a recollection? Bolzano gives the following example of how a cue can prompt our recollection effectively or ineffectively: a listing of key words will facilitate our recollection of a speech we learnt by heart if and only if the key words are set up appropriately. hence rather than claiming that memories are prone to error. also James L. 74 Each recollection creates new memories of old experiences.4. above. For example. I. if our memories are prone to error. 73 False memories can be created in different ways. WLIII. Autobiographical recollections are modified as traces of past events are retrieved by cues that are reorganized in our own narrative about our past. Martin (2001) “Episodic recall as retained acquaintance”: 257-284. either by our imagination or through various forms of suggestion or even by our own reconstructions of our past. Also. either by our imagination or through various forms of suggestion. A. on this Schacter (1996: 71). Loftus (1999: 107) who points out in her study of memory distortion that “[f]alse memories arise as a natural by-product of reconstruction. Thus our recollections can be modified by the way memory is probed (or even by the way it is encoded in the first place) or by how the cues are organized in a retrieval. quoted in note 58. As Bolzano reminds us. cf. quoted in note 59. M. it is because there may not be a one-to-one correspondence between a past informational state and the present memory experience reactivating or representing this state. cf.On Autobiographical Memory 35 can be modified. § 284. 49-50. the accuracy of my account will depend on which retrieval cues are used to prompt my recollection. if my recollections are inaccurate. and memory”: 255-273.

Re-examining memory traces The contemporary discussion about memory traces turns on the question whether or not traces provide a plausible explanation of recollection as a causal process and a grasp of temporal order as “earlier” and “later”.36 Chapter One ing is incorrect. memory distortion depends on how we construct a past event which in turn depends on the prior and subsequent events surrounding the event we want to retrieve. 76 In other words. A. according to which our experiences precede our memories (and that we have to go back in time to retrieve a past event). Schacter (1996: 73. which Bolzano tried to supplement in the Athanasia with his theory of the soul as a continuous substance.1. Cf. Feldman & Dashiell (1995) “The reality of illusory memories”. Temporal markers are also a debated factor in the dispute about memory traces. Krause (2004. For unless we can grasp causal relations and an assymetric temporal order or unless we have a sense of temporal direction. Morscher ed. Bolzano’s condition (3) and section 2. discussed in section 2. that is. On Bolzano’s concept of the soul. The classical causal theory of episodic memory cited in contemporary literature is by C. how to causally connect past and present. 78 I omit the complex topic of the immortality of the soul.3. quoted above and Bolzano’s condition (1). 78 Our self or soul must have the ability to be causally connected and traces account for causal dependence by spanning the gaps between past and present in episodic memory by providing 76 Cf.4. cf. Loftus. St.3. in Schacter (ed): 47-68) and Schacter (1999) “The seven sins of memory”: 119-137. and A. Trace theories such as Bolzano’s purport to explain the continuity between our present experience and the remembered event. we cannot produce autobiographical narratives. 77 In addition. above. So temporal contiguity or temporal markers (Bolzano’s condition (4). again appear to play a crucial role. For the self-awareness constraint. Jahrhundert. V: 157-8. they will only cause confusion and hence obstruct our recollection because the new information interferes with the stored information.. Academia Verlag. or more precisely. Augustin. cf.. Martin and Max Deutscher (1966). “Remembering”: 161-196. in particular: 229-97). because of the self-awareness constraint of episodic memory. 3. in Bernard Bolzanos geistiges Erbe für das 21.B. A. E. since the metaphysical consequences of this debate go beyond the scope of this investigation. also J. . as a simple substance that persists through time. we also need a concept of the continuity of the self. above). Campbell (1997): 105-118.V: 152. 269-294. Mark Textor (1999) Ueber die Unvergänglichkeit der Seele. 77 Cf. ch. 101).

above. 81 The question of what traces are and how they link experience and recollection is posed not only in terms of static imprints and the storehouse model. cf. “Memory demonstratives”: 169-186. 79 The glass on the table in front of me that I now perceive is a present event which activates a memory trace containing a past event. 80 Friends of the trace-theory would counter such objections by arguing that although memory involves a re-presentation of the past. Wittgenstein. Gianfranco Dalla Barba (1999): “Memory.3. But there are different views about what traces are and what they do. trace-theories are begging the question by presupposing the past event they are supposed to explain. memory traces consist of the following paradox: the trace which stores a past event and produces its recollection when activated. consciousness and temporality”: 138-155. Dalla Barba (1999: 139-141). trace and memory are not the same thing. For a discussion of these criticisms cf. 79 . 82 As we have seen in section 2. not because they are preserved perceptions. Schumacher (1975-6) and Lewis (1983). Campbell (2001). section 2. quoted in note 48. passim) who rejects the trace concept as a static storage form in favour of a distributive model of memory. yet we remember this event as past. But when the event “glass-on-the-table” is retrieved. Rather. The memory trace paradox is that preserved perceptions or traces are always in the present and do not enable our awareness of the past. On the use of memory demonstratives and a defense of the view that we have a direct acquaintance with the past and hence no need for memory-images (or traces conceived as such). Bolzano uses a dynamic model of traces. precisely because they are residues of representations (and not representations themselves). such as “that glass was on the table”.3. above. namely the glass on the table I previously perceived. Sutton (1998. 81 Cf. above. originates in elements belonging to present events. Sutton (1998: 305) On the memory trace paradox. rather they are compressions of past events. For this reason traces persist across time. According to the antitrace view. according to which someone has a recollection or renews a past representation if and only if he looks at a trace prompting this renewal (condition (9)).On Autobiographical Memory 37 plausible explanation for the link between episodic memory and the remembered experiences on which it depends. 80 Cf. Trace-critics usually base their objections on the assumption that traces are static imprints or copies of past experiences and that traces are preserved perceptions that store events for future retrieval. 82 Cf. Traces are not imprints in the sense of copies of past events. but because they are remnants or Cf. More recent trace critics include Squire (1969).. cf. it happens in the present. Nor do they provide a ground for recognizing an event as past or using a memory demonstrative for referring to it in a past-tense judgment.

we collect the sediments of the event.B. 83 . § 12: 91). Although traces are dispositions. 85 We can thus infer traces from their manifestations and explain the causal continuity involved in recollection. mais on pourrait aussi se ressouvenir de bien loin si l’on était ramené comme il faut. On peut oublier plein de choses. Bolzano picks up the trail. If traces make possible our capacity for recollections. 10. for in a recollection. This weaker causal claim and the underlying dispositionalist view were developed by Hering. a Bolzanian heir who took up where Bolzano left off and especially in conditions (1) and (9). 85 N. Nouveaux Essais. § 2: 110). that is. but encoded data or engrams underwriting our capacity to retrieve a past event. also Sutton (1998: 297-203) who defines a trace as a cause of the cognitive episode and argues for a dispositionalist view of traces. Deutscher (1989: 61) on the weaker causal claim that memory capacities are based on causal connections. :53. that is. II. whereas the retrieval itself is triggered by whatever cue that prompts it. II. For traces are active powers under appropriate circumstances. Some traces of past events may never be manifested. they are dispositions which are the remains of past impressions. Leibniz also forestalls Bolzano’s claim that the trace is an aftereffect of a representation which can be retrieved if it is prompted correctly (although Bolzano does not mention this): “je ne crois point qu’il y ait dans l’homme des pensées don’t il n’y eut quelque effet au moins confus ou quelque reste mêlé avec les pensées suivantes. since they are only manifested under certain conditions. traces have the power to be retrieved if they are prompted correctly and they are manifested if we successfully renew a past experience in our recollection. if they do not receive an appropriate cue.1. Cf. a trace enables or makes possible our capacity for retrieval. in the same sense that salt is soluble if it is immersed in water or wax is meltable if it is in contact with a flame. These dispositions can be actualized if certain conditions are satisfied. § 283. Yet they lack genuine temporal duration. my italics for emphasizing the part cited by Bolzano in his note to WLIII. not surprisingly. that is.38 Chapter One after-effects of an experience: they are the sediments an event left behind and these sediments make possible a collection later on. as Bolzano’s predecessor Leibniz makes clear and. 84 Traces are dispositions that make possible the retrieval of a past experience and the re-collection or reconstruction of the patterns a past event left in our mind. they are not properties because they have a-temporal persistence. mais dont on ne s’aperçoit que lorsque la mémoire entrouve quelque occasion. a recollection. 84 Cf.” (Nouveaux Essais. Here we have a weaker causal claim according to which memories are enabled or made possible by the trace left by a past event. Leibniz calls traces “des dispositions qui sont des restes des impressions passées dans l’âme […]. 83 So traces are not mere fragments of past representations for they are not parts of representations. Both authors discuss memory traces in terms of “causation as sedimentation”.” (Leibniz.

(1870 “Ueber das Gedächtnis als eine allgemeine Funktion der organisierten Materie”: 179).” Hering. 86 “Nur das Gedächtnis spannt eine Brücke zwischen meinem Heute und meinem Gestern.On Autobiographical Memory 39 indicates causal continuity as a key issue in autobiographic memory: “Only memory spans a bridge across my today and my yesterday”. 86 .

1 He justifies his aim by a methodological remark intended to align scientific interests and emphasizes the interdependence of the natural sciences: physics. Hering (1870:171). Über das Gedächtnis: 174-6. neurobiology and psychology are collectively related in memory research. Unfortunately this translation is often inaccurate and sometimes misleading.CHAPTER TWO HERING ON THE ROLE OF TRACES IN EPISODIC AND PHYLOGENETIC MEMORY 1. He rejects the hypothesis of a causal relation between matter and consciousness on the grounds that we lack the knowledge for postulating such a relation. physiology. 1 . 3 Cf. This is why Hering first assimilates philosophical considerations and psychological observations and then claims that organic matter and consciousness are interdependent domains for the memory researcher. where he refers to himself as a natural scientist about to venture into the realm of philosophical considerations in order to raise his investigations to a higher scientific level. the borders between psychology and philosophy were not yet clearly drawn and psychology. physiologists must adapt their conceptual tools. English translation 1913. In an unexpected twist on the methodology used by contemporary psychologists. was close to contemporary philosophy of mind. My citations refer to the 1870 edition and the translations are my own. 3 Mental and sensory phenomena coact with physiological factors and in order to investigate these phenomena. he chooses the “armchair method” they ironize because he recognized the need for a common viewpoint which memory researchers should assume. Instead. 2 In 1870. 2 Cf. especially descriptive psychology. he puts forward the assumption that matter and consciousness stand in a lawHering (1870). Hering on the role of traces in episodic memory or recollection Ewald Hering presents the philosophical implications of his physiological memory research in a lecture entitled “Memory as a generalized function of organized matter”.

6 “Nur flüchtig betreten die Vorstellungen die Bühne des Bewusstseins. wie der Schauspieler nur auf der Bühne König ist. das ist jene besondere Stimmung der Nervensubstanz. re-pass. as well as conceptually appropriate for describing non-physiological events.vi: 253. cf. sondern was fortdauert. pass. provided only that it is prompted correctly.On Autobiographical Memory 41 governed relation of functional interdependence. and mingle in an infinite variety of postures and situations. where several perceptions successively make their appearance. 5 His use of the stage and scene metaphors indicates that he considers (explicit) memory as a remembering of episodes or scenes of which we have representations. Hering insists that it is only whilst we are conscious of them that they are representations and he argues for memory traces by saying that our proof of their existence consists in the persistence of representations: we know that they persist somehow. um sie wieder erscheinen zu lassen. in current connectionist models. Über das Gedächtnis: 175-6. vermöge deren dieselbe den Klang. Hume uses the theatre metaphor in a similar way: “[t]he mind is a kind of theatre.” Über das Gedächtnis: 179. den sie gestern gab.” Über das Gedächtnis: 179. This hypothesis of a functional correlation between mental and material changes (which I call Hering’s law) permits physiologists to investigate mental phenomena (Erscheinungen des Bewusstseins). even though we may not be aware of them.” THN. such that a change of variables in one domain demands a change of variables in the other. traces are also described in terms of resonance and attunement. […. since it only takes a cue to make them reappear.4. 7 Traces are what persist. bedarf es doch nur des Stichwortes. unlike representations which appear and disappear in our consciousness. bkI. 7 “Sie [die Vorstellungen] dauern nicht als Vorstellungen fort. um bald wieder hinter den Coulissen zu verschwinden und andern Platz zu machen. my translation. wissen wir. glide away. Nur auf der Bühne selbst sind sie Vorstellungen.] traces are the means by which the system attunes itself to certain inputs.” 5 4 . Interestingly. using a method that is scientific. Sutton (1998: 286): “Trace theories and resonance theories are not incompatible. 4 Hering distinguishes between representations and the traces they leave behind by claiming that representations appear only fleetingly on the stage of our consciousness and that what remains “behind the scenes” are their traces. auch heute wieder ertönen lässt. Aber als was leben sie hinter der Bühne fort? Denn dass sie irgendwie fortleben. Hering Cf. wenn sie nur richtig angeschlagen wird. 6 He then defines the memory trace as a particular disposition or attunement of the nervous substance (Stimmung der Nervensubstanz). by virtue of which the same sound that was produced yesterday can again be evoked today. hence mental phenomena are considered as functions of material changes of the cerebral substance (Hirnsubstanz) and vice versa.

eine Veränderung des molekularen oder atomistischen Gefüges. that is. Usually. a change in the molecular or atomic structure. (whereas short term alterations are characterized by small changes in the cell’s ability to release the transmitter. so that it can be used or processed).42 Chapter Two considers traces responsible for our vivid recollection of past perceptions and our ability to experience groups of sensory perceptions in their correct spatio-temporal order as they “return into consciouscness in the full sensory vivacity of their original perception. jene physischen Prozesse zu reproduzieren. Über das Gedächtnis: 182. They point out that the switch from short to long term facilitation or potentiation is a switch from process-based to structure based memory. also Schacter (1996: 5860).” 8 Hering’s physiological explanation of traces as material effects of past experiences not only accounts for the mechanisms by which traces link experience and recollection. explanations in terms of biochemical changes in neural tissues which account for the consolidation of memory traces. long-term memory is said to be characterized by an increase in synaptic connections (cf. mit denen zugleich der entsprechende psychische Prozess. Squire and Kandel (1999: 144-146) on the consolidation of memory traces. 1999: 1).” […] “This clearly shows that even after sensation and perception have long since vanished. 9 Cf. by which the nervous substance is enabled to reproduce those physical processes which also produce the corresponding psychological process of sensation and perception. d. cited in Squire & Kandel. doch in unserem Nervensystem eine materielle Spur zurückbleibt. dass.” (cf.and short-term memory is a structural difference in the nerve-cell’s anatomy. since short term memory holds information briefly.” Hering (Über das Gedächtnis: 177 my italics). Interestingly. Hering’s terminology may sound anachronistic. die Empfindung und Wahrnehmung gesetzt ist. a material trace remains behind in our nervous system. these authors cite Hering at the beginning of their first chapter: “Memory collects the countless phenomena of our existence into a single whole […] our consciousness would be broken up into as many fragments as we had lived seconds but for the binding and unifying force of memory. wenn auch die bewusste Empfindung und Wahrnehmung bereits längst verloschen ist. 9 From a neuroscientific perspective. 8 . Cf. unlike his point that traces are characterized by a structural feature and that recollections are enabled by a trace defined as a change in molecular structure – which anticipates con“Dies zeigt uns in schlagender Weise. but also anticipates contemporary accounts of how memories are made on a molecular level. but Squire and Kandel show that long-term memory is not always reflected in a growth of additional synapses but also in the retraction of pre-existing ones and that therefore the difference between long. also my note 1). durch welche die Nervensubstanz befähigt wird.h.

11 “Die Nervensubstanz bewahrt treu die Erinnerung der oft geübten Verrichtungen. It now reproduces all necessary processes for producing the correct perception.” 11 10 As Hering puts it: “Was mir gestern bewusst war und heute wieder bewusst wird. That postulate entails the consequence that recollections are functions of material changes of the cerebral substance and this view is corroborated by contemporary research in neurobiology concerning long-term memory. in abgekürzter Weise und ohne solche Dauer und .On Autobiographical Memory 43 temporary experimental views. we may then also accept the assumption that long-term memory is characterized by a structural change in these junctions. since there information is not held continuously but can be successfully retrieved at a later time. This is Hering’s claim expressed in contemporary scientific terminology: memory traces are neuroanatomic changes or patterns of connections recorded by the brain and our recollections are functions of synapses or transmission sites of nerve impulses. His postulate of the law-governed relation of functional interdependence between mental and material phenomena is also a basic premiss of contemporary neuroscience. connections between two nerve-cells or neurons for transmitting nerve impulses and that events are recorded by the brain in strengthening or consolidating these connections. alle zur Herstellung der richtigen Wahrnehmung nöthigen Prozesse. In other words. in a reduced way and without such duration and intensity that each single segment would be pushed over the threshold of consciousness.and post-synaptic cells. The problem for Hering. aber flüchtig. that is. is to account for the interim in long-term memory by explaining what happens to the information: how is it recorded and how is it retrieved? 10 If we accept the two premisses that memory traces are synaptic transmissions. […] but fleetingly. which is where retrieval occurs. as well as for current memory researchers. nerve cells have to adapt their anatomy or change their molecular structure in order to facilitate long-term memory. Hering then explains why traces are compressions or reductions of past events and how they enable our memory to attune to present perceptions by grounding the reconstruction of past experiences: “The nervous substance faithfully preserves the recollection of frequently performed activities. […] reproduzirt sie jetzt. Traces are thus persisting dispositions or attunements of the nervous substance: information persists in a reduced and dispositional state by virtue of the trace it leaves or the structural effect it has on neural tissues. for it requires a coordinated structure in pre.” (Über das Gedächtnis: 178). wo war es von gestern auf heute? Es dauerte als Bewusstes nicht fort und doch kehrte es wieder.

is responsible for forming habits and certain motor skills or learning from experience. without reproducing every single representation.e. Über das Gedächtnis: 178. however. Bolzano. § 286. for they are “chains of material nerve processes” involving the retention of information which enables us to know something about an event or how to do something “by force of habit” without recalling the source information that is. Hering draws an analogy between the processes of unconscious memory and the processes involved in perception: I can correctly perceive a white globe in a few moments. odours. Schacter & E. Similar to Hering (ibid: 178). cf. recognizing its curvature and estimating its size. dass jedes einzelne Glied über die Schwelle des Bewusstseins gerückt würde“ (Über das Gedächtnis: 180-1. my italics). 12 Or. a spherical shape. the general ideas of colours.44 Chapter Two In a recollection we do not consciously recall every single part of a past representation or every single representation composing a past experience and what we recall is a compressed version of the original event. whilst the latter carries our representations and concepts. WLIII. etc. 12 Hering draws a physio-psychological distinction between two memory systems which corresponds to the philosophical distinction between the ‘storage’ and ‘capacity’ memory models: unconscious or implicit memory retains and preserves representations whilst conscious or explicit memory retrieves or reproduces them. Tulving (1994) . is a source of knowledge which can bring back information from the past. though in a slightly different terminology. he considers memory responsible for (mental or subjective) concept-formation: “I believe that this holds particularly for the lower generic representations under which we subsume external intuitions. without being aware of the processes involved in becoming aware of a sensation of white.” Cf. Cf. since it involves self-awareness and enables us to reacquire past representations by reproducing past informational states in the present. Our procedural or implicit memory retains information it does not reproduce in every recollection. Unconscious or implicit memory systems are purely reflexive and preservative. The former. fly past our mind whenever we renew them. D. sounds. 13 Intensität. also argues that recollections are compressions of past experiences because we have retained them in implicit memory.8. For “our perceptive faculty would forever remain at its lowest stage if we had to consciously construct every perception from the details of sensory matter given through our senses” ( :182). i. He explains this compression as the high frequency with which representations we have formed in early childhood and have frequently repeated since. 13 See Über das Gedächtnis: 178-182. also called procedural memory. A conscious or explicit memory form such as episodic memory. yet only the final result enters our consciousness. as Hering puts it. memory is appropriately considered to be an unconscious capacity rather than a conscious one.

for he explains the latter in terms of memory and even calls colours as we see them memory colours (Gedächtnisfarben). traces are a relevant explanatory factor of recollection in an inferential model of long-term memory. More precisely. Consequently. Schacter (1996. so there is an interaction between memory colours. but of the present trace of that event. Hurvich (1964). especially in colour vision. for it enables us to grasp a memory-experience. perceived constancy and the process of activating a memory by rousing an engram from a latent to an active state. 26. Outlines of a Theory of the Light Sense. I use this translation in my citations. The notion of ecphory was coined by the evolutionary biologist Richard Semon to describe the retrieval process of memory as a match in“What are memory systems”:11. Grundzüge der Lehre vom Lichtsinn. The memory model that emerges from this account is inferential. . 2. §§ 4. since memory is considered as a reconstructive process and the role of traces in this process is to provide continuity between experience and recollection. Our self or soul must have the ability to be causally connected and traces account for causal dependence by spanning the gaps between past and present in episodic memory by providing a plausible explanation for the link between episodic memory and the remembered experiences on which it depends.On Autobiographical Memory 45 Episodic memory requires an awareness of ourselves as persons with a history and an ability to travel back in time to retrieve an event from our past. The memory trace guarantees the direct link between past and present. 14 On the other hand. he also determines the conditions of trace retrieval by means of the colour constancy effect. Today we can recall the same sound that was produced yesterday if the past configuration is correctly reconstructed or the patterns supplied by the trace are correctly filled in with our present information or cues. My looking inside myself retrieves a past event when I cognize my past experience by looking at my past and retrieving an event from my own experience. English translation by D. Hering’s memory colours and cued recall There is a significant link between Hering’s research on memory and his work in visual science. 14 Hering (1878). my cognition is not of the past event. or ecphory. 6. : 170) and Squire & Kandel (1999: 24) on the distinction between implicit and explicit memory. The common point between his analyses of memory (not just episodic memory) and colour perception is the phenomenon of recall: he relates the question of how present cues interact with memory traces to the problem of the colour constancy effect (Farbenbeständigkeit). Jameson and L.

Jameson and Hurvich translate Sehding as seen thing.” 16 According to Hering. 15 . and third.” Theory of the Light Sense (1878) § 6: 17. this is why we are able to ascribe very specific or fixed colours to objects: “to chalk white. According to the “ecphory” theory. Schacter (1996: 56-71) and Tulving (1983: 12-14) who examines “synergistic ecphory”. to sulfur yellow. that is. saying that we do not really see a uniform colour. or the similarity between the encoding and retrieval processes: the probability of our recollecting a past event depends on the match between the cue and the original encoding. I now think the direction of my argument was mistaken: first. to render the idea of a perceptual process involved in seeing something. Things as we see them (Sehdinge) display an approximate colour constancy and. In Kasabova (2004: 17) I argue against Hering (and Bolzano’s) view on the constancy effect. the perceived constancy is only approximate. independently of the varying lighting conditions. but on the relation between the cue that triggers recall and the memory trace. 16 Hering continues: “[…] Without this approximate constancy. the relative stability of perceived colours of surfaces under changes in illumination. cf. Cf. Engelmann. and […] it could not happen that individual objects have fixed colors (bestimmte Farben) for us […] which we call their real color (wirkliche Farben). we speak of white paper and the black letters of a page. the question is how it can be achieved. N. second. I perceive a relatively constant colour.B. Hering’s italics. The past participle “seen” refers to an accomplished or past state of affairs: a “seen thing” is a “gesehenes Ding”. I prefer to use the expression “things as we see them”. how do memory colours work together with memory traces in recovering stored information and how are memory colours related to perceived colour constancy? The second part of the question is simple: what Hering calls memory colours is perceived colour constancy. “Essays concerning colour constancy”: 177-198. The causal continuity between our past and present perceptions is achieved by the colour constancy effect. as Hering says. these specific colours of things as we them are memory colours and we are able to identify objects by means of their approximate colour constancy. memory depends not only on the strength of our associations.46 Chapter Two between the cue and the trace. their study of perceptual constancy points to perceived approximate invariance as a result of adaptive neurophysiological mechanisms for colour coding. if I see snow as white in full sunlight as well as in the orange-red light of the setting sun. a piece of chalk on a cloudy day would manifest the same color as a piece of coal does on a sunny day. 15 Our present question is. on this Jameson and Hurvich (the English translators of the Lehre vom Lichtsinn) (1997). Memory colours are approximately invariant colour of objects which we See Richard Semon (1909) Die mnemischen Empfindungen in ihren Beziehungen zu den Originalempfindungen. not a Sehding. or how a present cue and circumstances conspire in rousing a memory trace from a latent to an active state. For example. to coal the color black.

” Theory of the Light Sense. based on our recognition of that colour which in turn is due to the correctly prompted memory colour. All objects that are already known to us from experience. If there is a match between cue and engram and the memory colour is roused. for these are the memory colours we recognize as belonging to those objects. […] Moreover. Über das Gedächtnis. :179. 18 Cf.” Theory of the Light Sense § 4:7-8. we see through the spectacles of memory color. as it were. 18 We can formulate Hering’s condition for ecphory or the successful activation of a memory colour as follows: (i) we activate a memory colour m if and only if there is an attunement or affinity between the present cue and the trace The affinity between the cue and the engram is a necessary condition for rousing the trace from latent to active state. Cf. § 4: 7. we identify the object we see as having a certain colour. as in a piece “For the color in which we have most consistently seen an external object is impressed indelibly on our memory (prägt sich unserem Gedächtnis unauslöschlich ein) and becomes a fixed property of the memory image (Erinnerungsbilde). 19 This affinity is the quality of having the same sound or homophony. […] and it then partly determines the way we see it. Jameson and Hurvich (1997: 179) on colour constancy and postreceptoral adaptation which I do not discuss. What the layman calls the real color of an object is a color of the object that has become fixed (fest). since we could neither recognize nor identify things without some degree of perceived constancy which helps to bridge the temporal gap between past recollection and present experience. Hering says that we can grasp or recognize what takes place before our eyes by recollecting or reproducing past representations whose traces we perceive in our mind and we revive a memory colour if we prompt it correctly. I should like to call it the memory color of the object. the memory color of the object need not be rigorously fixed but can have a certain range of variation depending on its derivation. cited above. Our recognition is due to the approximate colour constancy of paper or coal in our past and present perceptions. This condition for effective recall is stipulated in his definition of a memory trace as a particular attunement (Stimmung) of the nervous substance by virtue of which the same sound that was produced yesterday can again be evoked today. if and only if the cue matches the engram. or that we regard as familiar by their color. We ascribe white to paper or black to coal. 19 “As the memory color of an object is always awakened [wachgerufen] if a memory image of it is aroused [geweckt]. in his memory.On Autobiographical Memory 47 see as fixed properties of our memory images of familiar objects. 17 . 17 In reply to the first part of the question put above.

Thus I can recall a scene from my past if a present cue correctly configures with it. For instance. But his claim also implies that he recurs to recollection for explaining the cognitive process of object identification and this claim has two implications. the former being the explanation of the latter. . Since. an approximately constant surface colour percept 20 See D. How does Hering account for the relation between recognition and recollection? On the surface he says that we recognize that which we recollect. The second implication is that memory colours can play a role in object identification provided the ecphory condition is satisfied. He describes homophony as an aspect of memory retrieval based on redintegration or a restoration based on a part-whole overlap. that is. the presentation or representation of a familiar object activates the trace of a past representation of this object in our memory. according to Hering. which seems quite banal. effective recall is the result of the attunement of the nervous substance or the trace conceived as a neuroanatomic change enabling an adaptation to present circumstances or stimulation.48 Chapter Two of music with one predominant melody or composition mainly based on chords where there is little differentiation in rhythm – that is why Hering uses the resonance metaphor ‘Stimmung’. the first and trivial implication is that memory colours are typical colours of objects which are recalled in connection with familiar objects. but on the other. If we see a memory colour when there is an interaction of the present cue and circumstances with a memory trace. But this adaptation is itself influenced by memory images in a successful activation of memory traces. proximity or opposition – but according to him these relations define the association of ideas. Homophony is one of Semon’s conditions for memory retrieval which he characterizes as a way of combining or superposing information from different source. our memory representation of an object also influences our present perception of it. the perceived degree of colour constancy or the memory colour is a result of how the visual system adapts to our continued visual experience. In Hering’s view. On one hand. hence white is recalled in connection with snow and vice versa. 20 We either by assimilate elements from different components or we differentiate between them and. perceptual effects are functions of physiological changes (and vice versa). Schacter (2001): 168-9. if and only if there is a successful match between the present cue and the memory trace and an affinity between physiological and mental events. It is because of this neurophysiological adaptation that a memory representation influences our present perception. As Hume would say. we use the relations of similarity. whereas Semon distinguishes between association and ecphory.

there is a functional relation Rf with neurophysiological adaptations n such that: if Rf (m1…. c) and Rf (m1…. entitled On the theory of reciprocal interaction in the somatic visual field. Hering develops the notion of reciprocal interaction (Wechselwirkung) in ch.mn) which are mental changes c.1. but what is the nature of the element which links them in a recollection? If the trace is an attunement of the nervous substance or a neurophysiological effect of a past experience and a recollection is produced if the trace is correctly configured with present information in cued recall.” 21 This is how he explains the formation of memory colours.8.. and the influence of our memory representations (particularly long-term ones) on our visual system. n). §§ 37-49. To put it another way. Consequently. by means of a reciprocal interaction between the neurophysiological adaptation to visual stimulation. so that for all memory colours (m1…. The role of signs and abstraction in recollection A tentative answer is that the successful match between encoding and retrieval processes is mediated by a semiotic relation of signification. retinal or cone adaptation and other physiological factors adapt our perceptual mechanisms under different lighting conditions. This interaction is governed by Hering’s law of functional interdependence. given that mental phenomena such as memory images coact with the neural visual mechanism..On Autobiographical Memory 49 is achieved as pupillary changes. what exactly is the cue triggering the recall? 2. memory colours or perceived colour constancy are a projection effect of an interaction between adaptive neurophysiological mechanisms for colour coding. and these secondary and to some extent accidental factors help to determine what is seen at a given moment. There is an encoding process and a retrieval process. lighting conditions and the present state of the retinal mechanism are only “the primary causal factors of the colours produced by the radiations.mn.mn. then c = n Memory colours coact with memory traces in activating stored information and this coaction is explained by adjustments between mental and physiological events enabling the retrieval of a past experience. between a sign and its representations or meanings. The cue is a sign which Theory of the Light Sense. § 4: 6.. Associated with them are the reproductions of earlier experiences aroused by all sorts of attending circumstances. thus altering the sensory effects of visual stimulation. at receptoral and postreceptoral or discriminatory levels on one hand. 21 .

we abstract representations by directing our attention to them and we raise them to the level of clarity and distinctness as we withdraw them from their context. 23 So. Bolzano calls representations obtained by abstraction “deducted representations” (abgezogene Vorstellungen). the main purpose of signs is to arouse those representations which are their meanings (Bedeutung). for a representation is that which is represented or signified by a sign and a meaning is the representation as such (Vorstellung an sich) of a sign. this is because we use them as signs which stir up representations or meanings.1. 23 As Bernard Bolzano. see on this Jameson and Hurvich (1997: 194).7. According to them. § 285. it produces a recollection because if the trace is activated. § 286. cf. 24 According to Bolzano. Schacter (1996: 81-3). Cf. Therefore Hering claims that ordinarily people use colours “as signs (Zeichen) by which they recognize objects again (wiedererkennen) and in this way the memory color of the recognized object is also immediately brought into focus”. A correct configuration between sign and trace which produces a recollection involves a process of abstraction and generalization. it enables us to be aware of a past event and recall is triggered by an attunement with the cue. on this Kasabova (2006). where Hering writes that a memory colour “is always awakened if a memory image of it is aroused by any other characteristic of it. for on the cellular 22 . or even only by the word that denotes [bezeichnen] the object. for example colours that are difficult to classify under any lighting conditions. WLIII.1. cf. as objects that stir up or prompt representations. that is. if memory colours partly determine the way we see objects. On consolidation or the switch from short-term to long-term memory.B. § 4: 11. such as the colours of concrete or haystacks. it is especially aroused when we see the object in question again or even only think we see it. Hering’s Pragueian predecessor. but which are associated with [A]. WLIII. since ecphory occurs either by repeating the original stimulus or by rousing the engram by means of a sign that represents the original stimulus. for to recollect is to abstract or forget the differences between present and past representations by directing our attention to what they have in common. 22 We take the colours we see as signs. also the passage partly cited in note 107. and it then partly determines the way we see it. 24 But we Theory of the Light Sense. Squire & Kandel (1999: 132) and Madison (2004: 42-49). Hering refers to cases where colour recognition helps with object identification but there are also cases where color identification is a result of object identification rather than contributing to it.” Hering’s notion of signs is close to his Pragueian predecessor’s view that a sign is an object a whose representation [A] can be easily prompted or stirred up and used as a means for producing representations which are more difficult to generate. WLII. cf. puts it. consolidation is long-term facilitation or potentiation. Cf. N.50 Chapter Two is either linguistic or non-linguistic. WLIV. And if the sign is correctly configured with the trace. Cf. § 676. § 285.

The memory trace becomes more stable when short-term or procedural memory is converted into long-term or explicit memory for this is how the brain records past experiences: by strengthening the connections between neurons it strengthens the temporal persistence of the trace. 25 “Auf diese Weise lösen sich diejenigen Eigenschaften. only certain particularly noticeable qualities (besonders hervorstechende Eigenthümlichkeiten) are reproducible which we have already perceived in other things at previous times and for whose reception the brain was therefore already tuned (gestimmt). Our familiarity with similarities between present and past representations is due to a consolidation between our implicit or procedural and explicit memory enabling the survival of memory traces. we could not correctly configure the patterns of a past event with a present cue and consequently we could not reconstruct the episode. im Gedächtnis gleichsam ab von ihren Trägern und gewinnen als Vorstellungen und Begriffe eine selbständige Existenz in unserem Bewusstsein. as it were.” 25 Abstraction is thus an adaptive feature of our memory to facilitate our acquisition of knowledge by economizing on particular details and consolidating a coherent sequence from compilations of past representations. This attunement is the trace recorded by the brain as a neuroanatomic change enabling it to adjust to certain informational states.” Über das Gedächtnis. iii § 4 : 410. Hence my recollection of entering a room does not involve a conscious recall of every single move I level this is a switch from process-based or short-term memory to structural-based or long-term memory involving new protein synthesis and gene regulation. und so wird die ganze reiche Welt unserer Vorstellungen und Begriffe aufgebaut aus den Werksteinen des Gedächtnisses. If our recollections were cluttered by numerous details. Locke (1689) would agree with Hering that abstraction is an economy of thought: “a distinct Name for every particular Thing. namely those qualities which are particularly noticeable. This consolidation of memory traces accounts for our capacity to make abstract concepts or general representations and use them as signs or cues for recalling various particular representations. separated from their substances and gain an independent existence in our consciousness as representations and concepts and in this way the whole rich world of our representations and concepts is constructed of memory’s building blocks (Werksteine). welche vielen Dingen gemeinsam sind. Hering continues: “this is how properties that are common to many things are.” Essay III.On Autobiographical Memory 51 can only form abstract representations if we have previously retained information about them and are therefore familiar with their similarities. . would not be of any great use for the improvement of Knowledge: which though founded in particular Things. enlarges it self by general Views. Locke’s italics. :178. As Hering puts it.

Hering on phylogenetic memory and his study of instinct Hering extends his notion of autobiographical memory to phylogenetic memory. 1870: 184-5). it must also be a biological feature of a species in general and since all individual animals are endowed with memory. there must also be a memory pertaining to the evolutionary development of a species.” (Hering. 26 3. a phylogenetic memory which is expressed by instinctive behaviour.52 Chapter Two made but is a reconstruction of a scene in which past representations are cast or compressed into a coherent sequence edited by my episodic memory. memory is a biological feature of human. a legacy acquired in the individual life of the maternal organism and added to the greater heritage of the entire species. 26 . on this Schacter (1996: 80-81). His argument for the possibility of phylogenetic memory can be reconstructed as follows: since memory traces are neurophysiological effects of past experiences. unter denen er lebte. Therefore every organic substance bestows a small legacy on the germ (Keim) that splits from it. und dass infolge dessen jedes organische Wesen dem Keime. a part of the cell (the protoplasm) is hereditary and can be passed on from one generation to another. sich angeeignet hat.” 27 See on this Luria (1968) The Mind of a Mnemonist who discusses the mnemonist Shereshevskii whose recollections were inundated by details at the expense of understanding what he had memorized due to his inability to abstract (or to forget) cf. my italics. If memory is a biological feature of individual living beings. sondern erst unter den besonderen Verhältnissen. Ireneo. 27 “Wir sind auf Grund zahlreicher Thatsachen zu der Annahme berechtigt. animals. According to the idioplasm (Keimplasma) theory. Memory thus belongs to the vital processes of living beings. welches im individuellen Leben des mütterlichen Organismus erworben und hinzugelegt wurde zum grossen Erbgute des ganzen Geschlechtes.L. welche er selbst nicht ererbt. Borges’ (1962) Funes the Memorious also suffers from this affliction. ein kleines Erbe mitgibt. the hero of J. dass auch solche Eigenschaften eines Organismus sich auf seine Nachkommen übertragen können. Hering writes: “On the basis of numerous facts we are justified in assuming that even such properties of an organism which were not inherited but were acquired under the particular circumstances in which it lived can be transmitted to its descendants. viz. der sich von ihm trennt. as well as non-human.

increase in size. however moderately. that there is a biological feature such as phylogenetic memory which is a function of organized matter. either through a long process of habituation (Gewöhnung) or by regular training. He calls this transmission a material connection (materielle Verbindung) between an organism’s ac- 28 29 Cf. Hering (1870: 187). so that. by extension. Hering says. Hering considers the difference between transmitting or reproducing qualities within the same organism (of which the offspring was once a germinal part) or from a parental organism to its offspring merely as a difference in degrees and not as a difference in kind. from a parental organism to its progeny. if something has become second nature in a parental organism. a performance which is visible in cellular alterations such as alteration of form. So. These latter help the organism to produce an appropriate level of response by integrating the signal from many receptors to determine the degree of the key stimulus. lies in the reproductive performance of cells and sub-cellular structures. supported by late 19th Century histologic research: although the nervous system is divided into thousands of cells and fibres. these characteristics can then be transmitted to this organism’s offspring. it constitutes an interrelated whole (ein in sich zusammenhängendes Ganze) and interacts with all organs. in Hering’s view. from one organism to another. Cf. More recent medical research has confirmed Hering’s assumption. Instinct or patterns of behaviour expressing the response of an organism is modifiable. he also accounts for instinctive behaviour transmitting acquired qualities from one cell or organ to another and. an interaction largely enabled by the nervous system. Hering (1870: 184). . and if the latter begins a new existence. expands and grows into a new being. For. division and cellular growth. By describing the nervous system as an interrelated whole. since new characteristics can be acquired and. the key stimulus triggering a behaviour is received by different sensory cells and their associated neural networks.On Autobiographical Memory 53 The proof. it also permeates the cell germinating in it. 29 In a way. roughly speaking. 28 He expounds his view using an argument from analogy. Hering anticipates evolutionary genetics. an organism’s reflex responses to specific stimuli are the result of an interaction of its different parts. for when an organism responds to environmental stimuli. this offspring then reproduces what it had once experienced as a part of a greater whole. since he formulates an early theory of genetic transmission of acquired qualities from parents to their offspring. viz.

31 Hering and Darwin were contemporaries and the Origin of Species appeared in 1892. NB: Although there is no explicit indication in the text. by virtue of which the latter can itself redevelop those parental qualities. The analogy between memory and heredity was later baptized the Semon-Hering theory. The suggestion about inheriting acquired characteristics was developed by Semon and was rejected by Lamarckians such as Weismann (1892). 32 Hering’s view on the inheritance of acquired characters is in direct contrast with August Weismann’s (1892) theory of heredity and the protoplasm of germ cells. by means of which both inherited and acquired characters are passed on to future generations. though they necessitate countless repetitions for influencing the hereditary process. vermöge deren der letztere jene mütterlichen Eigenschaften auch seinerseits wieder zur Entwicklung zu bringen vermag. For this reason. Semon had argued that acquired characteristics are inheritable since stimuli leave traces (he calls them engrams) on the protoplasm of the animal or plant. Hering was probably aware of Gregor Mendel’s experiments with plant hybrids published five years earlier. It follows that memory preserves the effects of experience across generations. When these stimuli are regularly repeated they induce a habit which persists after the stimuli cease and thus acquired habits can be transmitted from an organism to its descendants. but rather the organism’s ability to adapt and its capacity to learn. though not all of them are reproduced on a conscious level. since this reproductive power extends to sub-cellular levels. 30 . 30 Hering then correlates his concept of heredity with memory and this controversial analogy was developed by Richard Semon (1904) in his study “Die Meme”. Hering considers memory as a reproductive power and memory traces as neuroanatomic changes enabling an adaptation to present circumstances or stimulation. he claims. Hering’s view is dispositional: it is not the acquired characteristics that are inherited. As I have shown above. genetic transmission is a powerful feature of memory. 31 The relation between memory and biogenetic processes was cautiously suggested by Hering’s idea that the effects of practice penetrate very faintly into the germ. twenty-two years after Hering’s text On Memory.54 Chapter Two quired properties and the differentiating characteristics of its offspring. 32 Cf. And the memory of the nervous substance (Gedächtnis der Nervensubstanz) reproduces organic processes. in 1865. “So ist uns offen genug der Weg angedeutet. Hering’s theory of instinct differs from Darwin’s in that Hering’s account of heredity specifies that the sources of instinct are not only natural selection and inherited habit but that the characteristics inherited by future generations need not be innate but may have been acquired by previous generations and passed on. Hering (1870: 185-186).” :186. auf welchem die materielle Vermittlung zwischen den erworbenen Eigenschaften eines Organismus und derjenigen Besonderheit des Keimes liegt.

Matt Ridley (2003) Nature via nurture. If an animal. 35 “dass [das Thier] schon das erstemal so leicht auf die zweckmässigsten Mittel zur Erreichung seines Zieles verfällt. 1909) (who had read Hering). Jena). who argues for the interdependence of genes and nurture: 129. dass seine Bewegungen sich so trefflich und . animals have certain inflexible reflex responses to specific stimuli: a herring gull will recognize its own egg if and only if the egg is in its nest and it will mistakenly identify other objects in the nest as eggs. 34 3. this is because of the inherited content (Inhalt) of the memory of its nervous substance.On Autobiographical Memory 55 Hering antipicates not only Tinbergen’s famous study of the neurophysiological bases of innate behavioural patterns. Ridley (2003: 51). in obeying its instinct. Specific stimuli elicit instinctive responses. but the two can coevolve: dog breeders can domesticate future generations of dogs by breeding dog-types without the killing streak. Die Meme (monograph) and Die mnemischen Empfindungen in ihren Beziehungen zu den Originalempfindungen (1922). Cf. 33 See N.” 35 (“Das Keimplasma: eine Theorie der Vererbung”. Weismann rejects the (Lamarckian) claim that acquired characters or changes in the soma can be inherited. namely that genes can be influenced by factors other than nature – and that nurture influences nature “because the genetic programme is flexible”. a herring gull chick’s will beg for food if it is presented with a beak that as a red spot near the tip. but also a claim that is currently rising in popularity. regardless of the colour of the beak or the shape of the bird’s head. 33 According to Tinbergen. Similarly. which only needs prompting in order to take the most suitable course of action by itself and always remembers exactly just what is necessary. “already the first time so easily finds the most suitable means for attaining its ends and its motions are so perfectly adapted to their purposes. NB. Hering’s explanation of instinct as an expression of memory Hering expounds the notion of instinct which describes innate behaviour that is the same across all individuals of a given species by explaining it in terms of his dispositional account of memory traces. 30 years later Richard Semon (1904. I do not know whether Weismann had read Hering. 34 Cf. although the dog-species will retain one or more remnants of wolf-behaviour. Fixed behavioural patterns are inherited dispositions or abilities that are first retained as memory traces and then retrieved if they are prompted correctly.1. Tinbergen (1951) The Study of Instinct. cf. Semon (1909) also coined the terms engram and ecphory used by Tulving.

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Chapter Two

Based on his dispositional account of memory traces, Hering also sustains a dispositional view of innate ideas: it is not our ideas that are innate, but the reproductive capacity of the cerebral substance and this reproductive capacity is the memory of the human species. Phylogenetic memory, which Hering also calls the unconscious memory of nature, is expressed as instinctive behaviour in non-human animals and by predispositions or in humans.
“What appears as instinct in animals, appears in man in a less restrained form, as predisposition (Anlage). Of course concepts are not inborn in an infant, but the ability to extract (herauskrystallisieren) them from the complex mixture of sensations with such ease and precision is not due to the child’s own labour, but to the labour of the brain-substance of innumerable generations of ancestors.” 36

Hering assumes that (i) the link between heredity and memory lies in innate behavioural patterns or instinct and that (ii) instinct is appropriately explained as an expression of memory:
“[i]f instinct is considered as an expression of memory or the reproductive faculty of organized matter, if we assume that the genus is also endowed with memory, then instinct is understood at once”. 37

Instinctive behaviour is therefore correctly understood as an expression of phylogenetic memory. Hering argues that we should ascribe an extensive memory or reproductive faculty to the brain and body of the human
ganz von selbst dem zwecke gemäss regeln : dies verdankt es dem angeerbten Inhalte des Gedächtnisses seiner Nervensubstanz, welche nur eines Anstosses bedarf, um ganz von selbst in die zweckmässigste Art von Thätigkeit zu gerathen, und sich immer gerade auf das zu besinnen, was eben nöthig ist.” (Hering, 1870: 191). 36 “Nur erscheint dass, was wir beim Thiere Instinct nennen, hier in freierer Form als Anlage. Freilich, die Begriffe sind ihm nicht angeboren, aber dass sie aus dem complicierten Gemische der Empfindungen so leicht und sicher herauskrystallisieren, das verdankt das Kind nicht seiner Arbeit, sondern der vieltausendjährigen Arbeit, der Gehirnsubstanz zahlreicher Vorfahren.” (:193, Hering’s italics). “das unbewusste Gedächtnis der Natur”:194. 37 “Betrachtet man aber den Instinct als Äusserung des Gedächtnisses oder Reproductionsvermögens der organisirten Materie, schreibt man der Gattung ein Gedächtnis zu, wie man es dem Individuum zuschreiben muss, so wird der Instinct sogleich verständlich, und der Physiologe findet sogleich Anknüpfungspunkte, um ihn in die grosse Reihe jener Thatsachen einzufügen, die wir oben als Äusserungen des Reproductionsvermögens angeführt haben.”(:191).

On Autobiographical Memory

57

infant “of that which was developed thousands of times in his ancestors, and by virtue of this [reproductive faculty] he can now learn the skills he needs for living much more rapidly and easily, as far as they are not entirely innate.” 38 Whether we consider habituation as a form of memory depends on how we answer the following questions: is memory a purely cognitive power or are reflexive (in the sense of involuntary reflexes) abilities such as behavioural skills and simple associative learning also grounded in memory? Most contemporary memory researchers distinguish between the noncognitive or procedural memory system and cognitive memory systems. 39 This distinction was criticized by Bennett & Hacker (2003) who consider memory as а purely cognitive power. Consequently, according to them, procedural memory is no memory at all, because it is not cognitive and that if animals can learn or acquire certain motor skills by habituation or continued exposure to a stimulus, this “does not warrant characterizing the animal as remembering anything. For nothing cognitive is involved here. [...] An accelerated reflex or a conditioned reaction are not a form of knowledge. But memory is the retention of knowledge acquired […].” 40 On this view, memory is conceptualized in terms of knowledge: that is, knowledge is conceptually prior to memory, so that memory is inferrable from knowledge but not vice versa. Hacker & Bennett’s claim can be formulated as follows:
(1) x remembers p if and only if x knows p

If memory is analysed in terms of knowledge, it entails that I cannot remember what I don’t know. I discuss the undesirable consequences of this claim for autobiographical memory in part two, chapter 3.
“Gleichwohl müssen wir selbstverständlich, wie dem übrigen Körper, so auch dem Gehirne des neugeborenen Menschen ein weitgehendes Erinnerungs-oder Reproductionsvermögen dessen zuschreiben, was schon tausendfach an seinen Ahnen zur Entwicklung kam, und vermöge dessen er die zum Leben nöthigen Fertigkeiten, soweit sie ihm nicht schon vollständig angeboren sind, jetzt ungleich rascher und leichter erlernt, als sonst möglich wäre.” (Hering, 1870:193). 39 Schacter and Tulving (1994) summarize this position: procedural memory “is involved in learning various kinds of behavioural and cognitive skills and algorithms, its productions have no truth values, it does not store representations of external states of the world, it operates at an automatic rather than consciously controlled level, its output is noncognitive, and […] is characterized by gradual, incremental learning and appears to be especially well-suited for picking up and dealing with invariances over time.”: 26. 40 Cf. M.R. Bennett & P.M.S. Hacker (2003):157.
38

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Chapter Two

But is memory correctly analyzed in terms of knowledge? Or should we extend the concept of memory to noncognitive powers such as sensation and perception in order to explain how certain forms of knowing, such as knowing how to ride a bike, can result from training or habituation? Hering, in direct contradiction with Hacker and Bennett, claims that what we call the force of habit is actually the force of memory. 41 He refers precisely to unconscious or procedural memory systems that are “chains of material nerve processes”. He considers this form of memory as purely retentive, since it governs behavioural skills and enables us to act by force of habit, viz instinct. Habituation and learning modify the synaptic transmissions between neurons because they modify the capacity of neurons to transmit signals and memory traces are formed when these modifications persist. 42 This is why even primitive animals such as Drosophila can be conditioned to avoid odours associated with electric shock, because they can acquire a certain disposition. Hering would agree with Bennett & Hacker that the fruitfly has not acquired knowledge, but unlike them, he would explain this ability in terms of memory traces: the reason why the fruitfly has acquired this ability lies in its ability to form memory traces of past events. Animals can be conditioned to respond in certain ways to certain stimuli and some of these behavioural skills are noncognitive, but it does not follow that they do not involve memory, only that the memory system involved is implicit and unconscious. Hering considers memory as complex, which is why he refers to “memory’s building blocks”, through which our knowledge is built. 43 If we could not retain information, even on a primitive level of conditioning and association, we could form neither perceptual nor conceptual representations. Not all forms of learning and memory are forms of cognition, but they are conditions for acquiring knowledge. The structure of memory is hierarchical, ranging from noncognitive to cognitive forms, and the highest memory form, viz recollection or autobiographical memory, is also a source of knowledge because it involves self-awareness. Hering’s claim can be formulated as follows, in two parts which correspond to the distinction between retention and retrieval:
(2a) x can learn p if and only if x remembers or retains p (procedural and phylogenetic memory)

41

Cf. Hering (1870: 182). “Was wir die Macht der Gewohnheit nennen, das ist seine [des unbewussten Gedächtnisses] Macht.”, Hering’s italics. 42 Cf. Hering (1870: 177, 180) cited above. 43 Cf. Hering (1870: 178), cited above.

for it is not clear-cut. as Pavlov’s experiment shows. Animals can be trained to remember certain things under certain conditions. 26-28). I think we should distinguish between higher. Dogs can learn or be conditioned to salivate at the sight of an approaching person who had fed the dog in the past. Animals. such as self-recognition or self-identification. provided it has learned to associate this person with the food by repeatedly seeing the two together. but there are other cognitive memory systems which are also attributed to non-human animals. . for it is the result of an involuntary response rather than of a conscious thought. but no cognitive memory form whose final productions the individual can retrieve due to his or her conscious awareness (though they have other cognitive memory forms). 44 The second part of Hering’s claim is: (2b) x can cognize p if and only if x remembers or retrieves p (recollection or episodic memory) One of the distinctions between the memory systems of human and (non-human) animals exploited by philosophers and neuroscientists alike is based on the self-awareness criterion: only humans have reflective memory because only humans are capable of self-awareness. So. namely primary or working memory and semantic or factual memory. (1994. On these distinctions. but rather a primitive form of discrimination: they have a sense of their body 44 Autobiographical memory is the only explicit memory form involving selfawareness. this is because they have procedural memory. on the other hand. cf. higher-order organisms such as mammalian animals may be said to have some awareness of their own experience and a basic sense of self or self-awareness. using association of stimuli. but not recollecting or retrieval. Nonetheless. Regarding the question of self-awarenes. not one involving language and thought. In other words. if animals can be trained to perform and to acquire certain motor skills.On Autobiographical Memory 59 Learning certain skills or ‘knowing how’ to do things involves procedural or nondeclarative memory which is reflexive but not reflective. Schacter & Tulving. are said to have no personal memory because they have no sense of self and hence cannot be aware of their own experience. for this is remembering from habit and involves primitive learning.and lower-order organisms. even though this distinction is problematic. information is retained unconsciously: we know how to ride a bicycle or how to type on a keyboard and we can learn to expect food when we hear a bell without consciously remembering when and where we learnt to do so.

ch. they can feel pain as theirs and they are aware of their spatial extension and distance between them and other bodies. insects or invertebrates is a question I will not discuss here). The greatest ideas. written and oral language would be mere empty signs for later generations. And this self-reflective act creates a new cognition of an old experience. for they do not just need to be heard. und wären sie tausendmal in Schrift und Sprache verewigt. Such a primitive awareness of one’s own body thus implies a capacity for spatial discrimination or awareness of spatial relations (whether this claim also holds for reptiles. die nicht dazu gestimmt sind. our species would have no memory and we. 46 “Man hat die mündliche und schriftliche Überlieferung das Gedächtnis der Menschheit genannt und dieser Spruch hat seine Wahrheit. sie wollen reproducirt sein. 1870: 194).” 46 Hering’s point is that without memory traces. sie wollen nicht blos gehört. for recollections are produced by means of a self-reflective act. Hering concludes his brief treatise on memory by a defense of phylogenetic memory: “Oral and written traditions have been called the memory of mankind and there is some truth in this adage. These systems are connected by the memory traces which ensure their retention and enable their retrieval. since it is informative about our past. this reflective form of memory depends on procedural memory. 45 . immortalized a thousand times in writing and language. a cognition of a past experience is produced by looking at one’s own mental state. that higher-order animals also have autobiographical memory which has a reflective condition: we have to be able to say that we have had a certain idea. nor could Cf. und ohne dieses wären auch Schrift und Sprache nur leere Zeichen für das spätere Geschlecht. including phylogenetic memory. sind Nichts für Köpfe. His study of instinct shows that memory is a complex of imbricated memory systems. Subjectivity and Selfhood. In other words. Dan Zahavi (2005) on infants’ primitive sense of self. But there is another form of memory which is the innate reproductive capacity of the cerebral substance and without it. however. are nothing to brains which are not attuned to them. would have no recollection. both conscious and unconscious. Consequently autobiographical memory is a cognitive ability which depends on autonoetic awareness and according to Hering. Denn die grössten Ideen. as individuals. and the former depend on the latter. 45 For example. Aber noch ein anderes Gedächtnis lebt in ihr.60 Chapter Two as distinct from others’ bodies which they perceive. das ist das angeborene Reproductionsvermögen der Gehirnsubstanz.7: 179-222. they need to be reproduced. It does not follow. perception or experience before.” (Hering.

A metaphor is used to transfer a familiar word from an object it ordinarily designates to something to which it is not literally applicable. such as: what is the language of memory? What is the epistemology of memory? If we cannot define the former. we are unable to clarify the latter. Roughly. it also raises important questions concerning the process of recollection and autobiographical memory. These problems lead to a third category of questions. which is why both scientific and philosophical memory-terminology is metaphoric. different levels of analysis are disregarded. However. Conclusions and second thoughts The purpose of the first part of my investigation was to present and situate Bolzano and Hering’s views in the geography of memory research and to tie them into current debates among philosophers. the questions can be divided into three categories: the first concerns the terminology and the conceptions of memory. based on a comparison between unlike entities. physiology and the neurosciences. Terminological questions are symptomatic in the problems of translating issues between mind and body: translation is inadequate. He determined this link as a particular disposition or attunement of the nervous substance and thus provided a neuroanatomic account of the memory trace using a philosophical method of conceptual clarification and descriptive analysis. Reifications are introduced by philosophers and used by them . neuroscientists and cognitive psychologists. I tried to show that the implications of this 19th Century account of mental and neurobiological properties can be retrieved in current memory theory. Hering expounds an account of memory trace for explaining autobiographical and phylogenetic memory forms by showing that there is a material or neurophysiological link between conscious and unconscious life. using an analytical and philosophical method. since recollection grounds the cognitive process of identification. memory researchers. theories are compared to buildings. the second regards the problem of translation and translatability between the language of the brain and the language of mind in the domains of philosophy. is relevant for scientific research and the ongoing interdisciplinary discussion of a form of memory that is oriented to the past. It follows that not only philosophy but history of philosophy. In memory theories. For example. either by psychologizing a general concept such as [idea] as a sense datum or by explaining a dynamic process as a static object. for memory metaphors result in reification.On Autobiographical Memory 61 we recognize what takes place before our eyes. in the statement: “this theory has a strong foundation”.

the neurobiologist Steven Rose (1992. shape and taste – and the recall of the experience ‘bitter bead’ is elicited by any one of these cues which will have enabled the bird to learn to avoid it.10: 241-273. Rose trained chickens to avoid pecking at a chrome bead with a bitter taste (passive avoidance training) in order to determine the biochemical alterations in memory formation and concluded his experiments by expressing a serious doubt about whether his findings could legitimize general claims about memory formation. rests on the assumption that when we perceive something and remember what we learnt. This model is unsatisfactory for. as Hering points out. But storage is distinct from retention. where the brain is compared to a computer. lesioned birds). not to store that p – retention implies storage. (1998) Lifelines. he found that there were lasting cellular changes in the chicks’ brains. according to which an engram resides simultaneously everywhere and nowhere in the brain. 47 . recording. 47 In addition. as Locke’s metaphor: “memory is a storehouse of ideas”. but storSteven Rose (1992) The making of memory. something is stored. human memory is not a mechanism but an organic process. Memory metaphors such as storehouse. 49 But the use of reifying metaphors raise the following question: can the brain “store” information? The claim that it can. He concludes that an engram or trace can reside in the brain without being stored in a single site. for to remember that p = to retain that p.11: 281-8. trace. conceptions and confusions about memory – in philosophy as well as in cognitive science. ch. More recently. Regardless of the fact that the first computer was supposed to imitate the brain. wax imprint. First. theatre. thus avoiding Lashley’s paradox.62 Chapter Two and neuroscientists alike and they become part of everyday language. ch. The latest model is an informational one. the brain is now modelled on the computer. life beyond the gene: 288-231. By using tests based on a variation method (a bitter yellow bead. a new blue bead. reification results in the problem of localizing memory either neurophysiologically (in the hippocampus) or biochemically (in glycoprotein synthesis). 48 He suggests that memory consists of a series of cues which are not stored in one and the same place in the brain and that there is no one-to-one correspondence between ‘bitter bead’ and a unique memory site. 1998) called for a return to an organic view of memory because recall and forgetting are active processes and not passive inscriptions or erasure of data. 49 Rose (1992). ‘bead’ is not a unitary experience for the chick but has a series of cues that requires several memory-sites – for colour. 48 Rose (1992). or encoding information give rise to various theoretical paradigms.

Hacker (2003). The dispositional view of memory traces held by Bolzano and Hering refutes localist and archival models of memory. we have to determine whether the notions describing an event or phenomenon are appropriate. The brain is not a photograph album. 2001). aims to explore all philosophical and psychological questions related to cognition with methods and concepts of molecular biology. R. how we get the idea of the past. An additional query resulting from this hypostasis and the confusion between different levels of analysis and different epistemologies is.S. we cannot store events or facts but we can remember where we put our keys or that World War II ended in 1945. for instance. part 2. therefore because of this) as well as the equally fallacious assumption that there is just one true explanation. whether it is the nervous system which remembers or the animal? Nobel-prize winning neuroscientist Eric Kandel (1999. Here the question is not only whether a theoretical paradigm suits our needs and purposes but whether it does the work it is supposed to do. nor does it “store” sentences! So. various unsettling questions remain concerning the relation between remembering and recognition. As a result of the mistaken assumption of an isomorphism between a representation and an image on the one hand and a copy and an original on the other.5: 164. having reconstructed some philosophical accounts which combine into a more or less coherent explanation of recollection and memory traces and even merge with some contemporary memory research in the neurosciences. Bennett & P. it also has various shortcomings.M. Of course it all depends on what we want to explain – and in order to be clear about that. but also why we remember it. But although the ‘mental capacity’ model is preferable to the ‘storage’ model. ch. M. what is ‘stored’? On the representation-as-image theory. A theory on recollection should provide a plausible explanation not only of what it is we remember. he explains higher level phenomena in terms of lower level phenomena. viz. Memory traces as effects of an inner change or structural 50 Cf. As it is. a memory which represents the original experience is a mental image which is a copy of the original experience. the role of imagination in memory construction as well as memory distortion. 50 In addition. neurons are said to ‘contain’ or ‘store’ a representation of the original experience in the form of synapses. The perils of such an explanation lies in its reductionism and the risk of misplaced causation or the fallacious assumption that post hoc implies propter hoc (after this. the problem of time and temporal relation in recollection.On Autobiographical Memory 63 age does not imply retention because retention is an ability and an ability cannot be stored. . We should be left with a satisfactory account of how our autobiographical memory works.

we must leave the dichotomy of the ‘storage’ and ‘mental capacity’ models and find a different perspective on the retention/retrieval problem which Aristotle put in a nutshell as a disposition not to forget something and a successful search in recollecting it. . 51 The task at hand is to determine the nutshell. is this continuity or continuum? In order to examine this question. precisely. In the second part of this work.64 Chapter Two analogues explain the causal continuity between past retention and present recall but this account does not tell us why there should be a continuity – or what. perceived time and perceived past and the role of first-person perspective and deal with questions such as: what is the relation between self-awareness and autobiographical memory? What is the role of recognition or discovering the significance of a past event? In what sense is our memory of the past? 51 See Sorabji (1971): 42. I examine the notions of continuum.

PART II: CONSTRUCTING AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL MEMORY: A PHENOMENOLOGICAL ACCOUNT DRAWN FROM HUSSERL .

1 . However. Trace theory. Hence cognition precedes recollection and recollection precedes recognition. so that memory is accordingly definable as a cognitive state. whether this form of memory is purely retentive or also informative and. I must perceive a similarity between Simmias and the picture in seeing the picture as a subject (depicting Simmias) and not only as a physical object. it does not follow from my seeing the picture as representing or presentifying Simmias that the picture has to remind me of him. I must have known him at an earlier time. In addition.PART II INTRODUCTION The theories I reconstruct in part I center on memory traces and the epistemological problems concerning autobiographical memory. N. not so much due to trace theory itself. This prototype determines the phenomenon of memory in terms of knowledge. translated by R. The main question is. 1 If the picture is to remind me of Simmias.B. as to the prototype of recollection and autobiographical memory it presupposes. if it is informative. considered as dynamic and dispositional. provides an answer to this question but there are disturbing loose threads. however. how we bridge the temporal gap between past retention and present recall. If autobiographical memory is analyzed in terms of knowledge. Also. Hackforth (1955). retention is tied to cognition as recollection is to recognition and we are facing Plato’s problem in the Phaedo: I recognize Simmias because I recollect him upon seeing his picture but in order to recollect Simmias. Apparently. I must recover the knowledge I have of Simmias inside myself which presupposes that I acquired this knowledge beforehand and that I am thinking of Simmias. memory is incorrectly analyzed in terms of knowledge. Is autobiographical memory or recollection correctly analyzed in terms of knowledge? This question is based on the assumption that cognition has conceptual priority over retaining and retrieving whatever knowledge we have acquired. since there are also procedural or non-cognitive forms of memory. I can think of (and recognize) the picture as presentifying Simmias without recPlato: Phaedo (73c-74a). I must be able to cognize both Simmias and his picture (as picturing Simmias). Socrates argues that learning is recollection and that learning something is made possible by earlier knowledge of that thing (74d-75a).

I discuss temporal relations and temporal perspectives in autobiographical memory. focusing on relations between events and actions. Another worry is that if I must think of Simmias in order to recollect him. 2 In this sense. I now propose a different way of tackling autobiographical memory and reformulate the problem by asking: why do we remember some things rather than others? Rather than examining the relation between recollection and knowledge and classifying autobiographical memory as a mental state which is either cognitive (informative) or not. In recollecting an episode. if we can answer this question. clock-time or measured time and re-lived time or recollected time. A further link is needed to draw my attention. actions or processes of doing something to achieve an aim. Anscombe (1959) Intention. so the ‘attention-magnet’ is not my thinking about Simmias but a motivational feature which focuses my attention (and my thoughts) on him because it is relevant to my present experience. something like an ‘attention-magnet’. are narrative constructions and descriptions produce actions because they open new intentions through new conceptions and viewpoints. providing me with a relevant reason for recollecting – and recognizing – Simmias.On Autobiographical Memory 67 ollecting Simmias himself. I suggest we investigate the reasons that underwrite our recollections or what motivates our autobiographical memory for. we can explain the structure of recollection. nor do we re-live it in real time (that which is measured by clocks). viz that the past is ‘brought back’ to the present. . that is. It is an old action which took place under a different description than the one we currently use in our recollection. A past action is an earlier.E. now absent action which is ‘brought back’ and re-experienced under description. I am already thinking of him. I don’t need to be reminded of him since. rather than vice versa. The whole point of autobiographical memory is the paradox of a ‘perceived past’. at present. A past action only becomes an action under a description. because in recollection. Thus past actions become renewed actions through recollection. how it works – which in turn provides some clarification about its nature. what has happened to a person and how they perceive themselves grounds or explains what they are doing now or where they are going. we do not produce it in the same order of succession as we experienced it.M. abbreviate and condense the elements of an occurrence into a sequence or unit which is connected semantically and an action is the phenomenon emerging from that seman2 See G. In autobiographical memory we construct. in the sense that an intentional act such as recollection is a description or narration. We should observe a triple distinction between lived (or perceived) time.

because on this view memory consists of dynamic patterns rather than static archive: the storage and retrieval model is discarded in favour of a single system which processes distributed representations. For mental time travel or orientation to particular past times. believing. connectionist memory models such as John Sutton’s (1998) also eliminate causality. For a top-bottom approach in philosophy. I argue for a foundationalist rather than a causalist account of temporal order in autobiographical memory. requires a sense of temporal order and a sense of self.68 Part II Introduction tic continuity. My account requires that our autobiographical memory is representational. 5 See Bernard J. I argue that this linear temporal order and temporal continuity are constructions and I try to expound the grounding principles of this construction named autobiographical memory. Past actions are not only relived and revived under new descriptions as we recall them. conscious and unconscious memory forms ranging from procedural systems governing motor skills to semantic. Baars (2002) on the integrative function of consciousness: “The consciousness access hypothesis: origins and recent evidence”: 47-52. A memory-model based on the distinction between storage and retrieval has to account for causality. 3 But unlike Campbell. pace veridicalist theories. In this I follow John Campbell (1997) who argues that our autobiographical remembering requires a grasp of the linear connectedness of time in memory and a spatiotemporal continuity of the self so that we are able to locate particular episodes as having occurred at particular past times. as well as linked to a sense of time and a sense of self. Interestingly. 4 But Sutton argues for a construction of human memory out of more basic though fleeting capacities investigated by Descartes as ‘animal spirits’ or nervous fluids which do not presuppose self-consciousness. . working and episodic memory. my investiga3 4 John Campbell (1997): 105–118. so we don’t really have any clear-cut criteria for determining causality in memory. my hunch is that it is difficult to isolate the causal processes involved in this form of explicit memory from those involved in other mental activities such as imagining. My hunch is that a philosophical investigation of subliminal processes presupposes an access provided by liminal states. causality is less important than explaining the relation between reason and consequence. 5 However that may be. In addition. thinking or reasoning. My account is limited to autobiographical memory – ‘human memory’ involves a complex of explicit and implicit. John Sutton (1998). Besides. viz a conscious self as well as a sense of self. they are produced by our acts of recollection. but autobiographical recollection allows for a model which does not rely on that distinction.

note. The later event is based on the earlier event and presupposes it as a necessary condition. 6 . 7 My view is based on Bolzano’s account of grounding (Abfolge) in WLII. §§ 7. These accounts go back to Leibniz’s liaison de vérités and ultimately to Aristotle’s distinction between οτι and διοτι. for ‘earlier’ explains why ‘later’ is the case. Hence ‘earlier’ stands to ‘later’ in a ground-consequence relation and not in an empirical cause-effect relation. Both authors hold that empirical laws are grounded on or derived from theoretical laws. in a way we bring about the past. perceived time and the phenomenal (or ‘intuitively given’) continuum. 311. §§ 111. 13. there are three main temporal phases: ‘now’.9. 316. I now live in Sofia because I moved there three years ago. To misquote Dummett: in recollection. this direction is a construct. 6 In a recollection. the temporal (and asymmetrical) relation of causality follows from the a-temporal relation of ground-consequence. 7 ‘Now’ is a necessary condition for discriminating between an ‘earlier’ and a ‘later’ phase and a sequence of ‘earlier’ and ‘later’ phases is the result of a ground-consequence relation. cf.note. Michael Dummett (1969) “The reality of the past”: 358374.1 and Husserl’s account of foundation and dependence relations (Fundierung) in the Third Logical Investigation (1901). Causality presupposes an earlier-to-later temporal direction whereas ground-consequence does not. WLIII.2. On a foundationalist or ground-consequence account of autobiographical memory. for in a recollection we only posit the past. as in q because p. viz these temporal positions are relative to For a realist account. but both temporal phases depend on the first person perspective of ‘now’. rather. Does recollection presuppose an earlier-to-later temporal direction? I think not for. The former gives reasons for the latter. This is an admittedly anti-realist stance with respect to statements about past objects and events: their truth depends on our finding out about it or being able to prove it. at the very least because the notion of autobiographical memory implies that we consider ourselves as agents: when we bring back an event from our past experience. And they are justified in the light of what is now the case. §§ 300. For an analysis of Bolzano’s view see Kasabova (2002). we are speaking of objects which pass out of existence but can still be referred to and such objects are things in virtue of which a statement is true (or false). 14-24. temporality is not explained in causal terms. The temporal position ‘earlier’ grounds the temporal positions ‘later’ and ‘later’ is grounded in ‘earlier’ because ‘earlier’ explains ‘later’. ‘earlier’ and ‘later’. 316. as an intuitionist would say.3. 221. 198. or so I shall argue.On Autobiographical Memory 69 tion is focussed on the problem of our liminal memory – more precisely our autobiographical memory and the problems of self-awareness.

as reconstituted aspects of things and events that I once experienced. whereas ‘earlier’ and ‘later’ are phases which are (now) represented. episodes of my personal past appear cinematographically.70 Part II Introduction ‘now’. We could also say that ‘now’ is a phase which is presently perceived. The temporal succession of our recollection is a construct which appears as a ‘flow’ or continuum. although it consists of discrete episodes. The structure of recollection is analogous to the stratified structure of cinematographic drama. for in recollection. .

such as the war. 1 My account of autobiographical memory is largely based on Husserl’s fruitful theory of memory and inner time consciousness. . What do we remember of our personal experience and what is the relation between autobiographical memory and narrative? And how are our recollections related to our concept of self – which is based on a teleological sense of the ends for which a person exists? 2 If we ask any one of a number of elderly grandmothers to tell us her personal memories. for assuming (as I do) that autobiographical memory is a constructed continuum. See also the elucidating discussion by John Brough (1975) “Husserl on memory”: 40-62 2 The teleology is Aristotelian: living beings grow. Edmund Husserl. XXXI. Human beings. XXIII. reach maturity and decline. chances are her tale will consist of certain emblematic events recast in a sequential order. grow into self-aware persons. such as her first love. the births of her children. her graduation. her wedding to a handsome officer who died several years ago. see Hua vols X.CHAPTER THREE AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL MEMORY CONSTRUCTED 1. Why do we remember some things rather than others and how do we recall events from our personal past? What is the relation between memory and phantasy on one hand and memory and self-awareness on the other? And what is the time of our autobiographical memory? These questions require some conceptual and methodological clarification. These limits are temporal marks or occurrences at a particular moment 1 John Campbell (1994). as well as the consequences of certain historical and political events on her life. we may add. A method for describing autobiographical memory I present the necessary and sufficient conditions for autobiographical memory in a model devised by combining John Campbell’s stepwise conception of memory and Husserl’s structural account of memory as presentification (Vergegenwärtigung). events related to them and her grandchildren. XI. XXXIII. XXVI. the main problem is identifying the limits introduced into our personal coordinate system.

thus: is self-awareness a condition for autobiographical memory? For surely we require a sense of self for 3 The idea that time is countable dates back to Aristotle’s view of time as what we count or measure and not that with which we count. that is. But why do certain occurrences count for us? And. we must ‘recollect’ ourselves and that we need a continous autobiographical narrative to maintain our continuous identity or self. furthermore. London. Bogdan Bogdanov (2006) who points out the binary mechanics involved in an autobiographical narrative: the narrator as a remembering subject not only produces a narrative but is also modified by the process of recollection. before deciding whether or not to define it in terms of personal identity. collection of rules as well as the common features constituting what we have come to call autobiographical memory. a composition with a moving sequential order. see R. a temporal continuum which emerges from a discrete underlying structure? My assumption underlying this investigation is that autobiographical memory consists of different levels or strata and involves different processes. 4 See for example Jerome Bruner (1993) “The autobiographical process”: 38-56 and (1994) “The ‘remembered’ self”: 41-54. 2002: 84-97. Although I don’t think there is a one-to-one correspondence between self and narrative. For a discussion of the view that for Aristotle. 4. for the time of recollection is countable (or recountable) and. being a continuum.72 Chapter Three which we count (and account for) and we can introduce infinitely many limits. Duckworth. 3 The limits are discrete elements because they are periods or temporal stages we single out or count.11. For a different viewpoint cf. A failure to recognize these differences has lead cultural psychologists and other theorists to identify autobiographical narrative with autobiographical memory on the mistaken assumption that personal narrative is on a par with our concept of self or personal identity. 223a21-9. Creation and the Continuum.14. Sorabji (1983) Time. I also argue that we should reverse the antecedent and consequent in the question whether autobiographical memory is a condition for our self-awareness. if only because our personal recollections can (re)produce a number of selves. I partly agree with Sacks’ second claim that to be ourselves. our mental movie-making ability. whilst our recollection is a continuum analogous to a cinematographic drama. See also Oliver Sacks (1985) in “A matter of identity”: 105 who argues that our identities are our narrative and that “each of us is a singular narrative”. 220a10-21. it is infinitely divisible. so we should inquire not only about what he remembers but about what happens to him as he remembers (and understands his narrative): 171. The countable aspect of time is on a par with its narratable aspect. time is a countable aspect of change but not a measuring unit. 4 Autobiographical memory is intimately linked to our narrational ability or rather. in Physics 4. and we must examine the conditions. . how do they become whole numbers in the continuity of our past.

On Autobiographical Memory

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producing a self-biography; consequently, if autobiographical narrative is intimately linked to autobiographical memory, we already have to have a sense of self in order to reproduce its past episodes.

1.1. Autobiographical memory and self-awareness
I examine the problem of autobiographical memory or recollection from a philosophical perspective, that is, by using an analytical methodology for describing a mental event and its cognitive role in order to explain what happens when we recall an event of our past. I argue that the identification of autobiographical narrative and autobiographical memory has to be proved, rather than assumed: first, the two notions are not coextensive, since there are different memory systems and memory forms. Our recollections are not only in narrative form. Autobiographical memory is an explicit memory form and a cognitive memory system also called episodic memory but there are other memory systems from which it must be distinguished: procedural memory, responsible for behaviour and learning: knowing how to ride a bike, for instance, does not require conscious recollection. In addition, there are other cognitive memory systems, called primary and semantic memory: remembering that World War II ended in 1945 or that Shakespeare wrote Hamlet does not involve recalling our personal experience. 5 Besides, none of these other memory systems depend on our narrational capacity and all of them are implicit memory forms, except for primary or working memory which is concerned with shortterm processing of information. In addition, we do not need to produce a life history in order to be aware of our own selves. But self-representation is not (yet) autobiography. Our self-awareness is merely manifested by referring to ourselves with the pronoun “I”, that is, we represent ourselves as persons by saying: “I am fine”, “my head hurts” or “I would like to go for a walk” but, especially in cases of memory-loss, one can also use the word ‘I’ without identifying or recognizing oneself as the subject that our statement refers to. But if we have lost the ability to recall our past, our sense of self is also impaired. 6 Thus, when the main character in the film Memento loses his
5 6

Cf. on this D. Schacter & E. Tulving (1994): 11; 26. See on this Patricia Smith Churchland (2002): 65-66. She discusses the case of a patient who has lost his autobiographical memory due to the destruction of the temporal lobes and suffers from both retrograde and anterograde amnesia (the loss of the capacity to learn new things). Yet he is still able to refer to himself by using the first person pronoun and therefore has a conscious representation of himself as a person. In addition, as Shoemaker (1968, 1994) famously claims: “[m]y use of

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Chapter Three

short-term memory, he is not only deprived of the capacity to learn and retain new things but also loses a sense of self – he knows who he was, but not who he is because he remains trapped in an endless present as his temporal horizon is deprived of its retentive and projective dimensions. This Husserlian point is discussed below, in section 2. If we accept that there is such a thing as autobiographical memory, our acceptance presupposes that we accept the existence of mental states. My mental states are shadowed by a sense of ownership or an awareness of myself as a single subject (or owner) of mental states and hence I experience myself as being psychologically single and complex. Although we can refer to ourselves without identifying ourselves, we cannot avoid an ‘essential’ indexical in the Kantian sense that self-awareness accompanies – and is therefore part of – representations of objects. Kant argues that it must be possible for the ‘I think’ to accompany all of my representations. 7 His argument holds particularly well for autobiographical memory which depends on a first-person perspective, for I own my past experiences in a double sense of being their subject as well as their author, so my recollections are an experience which combines ownership and agency (unless I am suffering from depersonalization). I am aware of having perceptions, emotions and thoughts. I am aware of recalling my favourite color as a child and at the same time I am also aware that I am having that recollection. This awareness of self can be peripheral to whatever object or event I am focusing on, but it remains a necessary background for my mental states. The fact that these are my mental states does not depend on my attending to them, but awareness of self grounds awareness of having mental states. So awareness of mental states as properties of myself presupposes an awareness of myself as a subject a capacity for being affected by our mental states – hence an awareness of my past experience presupposes an awareness of myself or a basic sense of self. This is how we can read Kant’s claim that self-awareness is a “consciousness of what we undergo as we are affected by the play of our own thoughts”. 8
the word ‘I’ as the subject of [statements such as ‘I feel pain’ or ‘I see a canary’] is not due to my having identified as myself something [otherwise recognized] of which I know, or believe, or wish to say, that the predicate of my statement applies to it “Self-reference and self-awareness.”: 80-93. 7 Kant, KrV 131, § 16. 8 Kant, Anthropology (1798), Ak. VII:161. The claim that self-consciousness is an inner sense also appears in the first Critique: ‘the I that I think is distinct from the I that it, itself, intuits […]; I am given to myself beyond that which is given in intuition, and yet know myself, like other phenomena, only as I appear to myself, not as I am […], B155.

On Autobiographical Memory

75

Being affected is necessary but not sufficient for self-awareness : I must own my past experiences not only as a subject, but also as their author. Narrative, obviously, is a kind of agency but the kind of act necessary for self-consciousness is more basic. As Kant would say, this act is an apperceptive synthesis which represents the sensory manifold as coherent and recognizable entities. 9 I cannot recognize a thing unless it is discrete and for it to appear discrete to me, it first has to appear in a spatiotemporal structure and, in addition, I have to represent it. And my representing something is an act – I am aware of listening to a concert just by doing it. In the same way, I am aware of recalling last week’s concert just by doing it and if I am aware of recalling it, then I am also aware that I am recalling the concert. This is what phenomenologists following Husserl and Merleau-Ponty call ‘pre-reflexive’ or ‘tacit’ self-awareness involving self-appearance, where an experience is given not as an object but as subjective or intentional experience. Their position is consistent with the view held by analytical philosophers such as Goldman or Bermúdez that a nonconceptual form of self-consciousness is more primitive than higher forms of self-consciousness. 10 Whilst I am occupied with or doing x, my attention is focused on x and not on my doing (or thinking of) x. And whilst I recall doing x I am tacitly aware of my lived experience of recalling x without directing my attention towards this awareness. Besides, I am immune to error through misidentification when I am aware of x which entails that I am immune to error through misidentification when I recall my earlier experience of x. 11 Self-awareness, then, is a sense of being affected as well as a representational (but non-conceptual) base for recollecting, reidentifying and recognizing objects and events. As Peacocke (1997) puts it: having a property is sufficient in relevant cases for its subject to refer to and ascribe the property to itself. 12 In other words, having a property is attributive but not yet predicative. Every event I remember is an event of mine in the sense that I experienced it, even if I have edited myself out of it.
Kant, KrV, B 153-8. See Dan Zahavi’s useful discussion of phenomenological self-awareness (2005), chapters 3 and 5. See also Alvin Goldman (1970), A Theory of Human Action: 96 and J-L Bermúdez (1998); The Paradox of Self-Consciousness: 274. 11 See S. Shoemaker (1968, 1994) on the immunity to error through misidentification relative to the first-person pronoun: it is not possible for me to make a mistake as to the identity of the person who is experiencing x or who is remembering an experience of x. “Self-reference and self-awareness”: 80-93. 12 Christopher Peacocke (1997). “First-person Reference, Representational Independence, and Self-knowledge”.
10 9

I recognize the relation between them (what they have in common) and I ascribe the same meaning to that thing. Whilst a robust self is a result of most autobiographies. A pre-reflexive access to experience is required for motivating reflection about that experience. on this Kant on the synthesis of recognition. Cf. From these conditions follows the assumption that I can recall an elapsed experience as mine if and only if I can locate it in time and that in order to recall a past event as mine.76 Chapter Three But agency (or narration) without the inner sense (or being affected) is insufficient for self-awareness: consider the case of Luria’s patient Zazetsky who writes three thousand pages of autobiography in order to recollect his self. (iii) I can relate a past and a present representation of that thing. vol. Identifying an experience as mine and re-identifying a past object or event requires not only a mastery of concepts but an awareness of a temporal continuity between my present perception and my past recollection. 13 Zazetsky cannot put his pieces together again or relocate himself. He tries to recover all his memories but he cannot reappropriate his self. His agency does not attribute a sense of ownership to his recollections because his explicit selfnarrative cannot compensate for his loss of an implicit sense of self or basic self-awareness. his sense of self is too faint to occasion a gravitational pull for the pieces of his narrative to recollect into a self. viz I can remember something if I can locate in time (iv) I can re-identify that thing as being the same one. Critique of Pure Reason A78/B104. In addition. orienting recollections of it and re-identifying it as mine. A present perception of a certain setting can stir up a scene from our distant A. I must also recall the past act in which I perceived/thought/judged that event.26 :177-219. In recognizing this thing here as the same one as the thing I saw yesterday. Autobiographical narrative is a result of our linguistic ability to express our past experience and our grasp of a temporal order оf “earlier” and “later”. viz. since I can recognize something if and only if (i) I remember it. that is. Luria (1972) The man with the shattered world. autobiographical narrative implies recognition and recognition requires both memory and use of concepts. 14 13 . if its sight awakens a feeling of familiarity accompanied by a revival of a past experience. that the past and present representations represent or mean the same thing. in Zazetsky’s case. (ii) I can identify that experience as mine. often triggered by a present cue. 14 Consider a flashback experience or a sudden recollection of a past event. He cannot discriminate between what is his and what is not because he no longer has an appropriate sense of what he is. A121 and Husserl on the synthesis of identification in the complementary texts to the Vorlesungen über Bedeutungslehre (1908) Husserliana.

Typically. when I saw a florist selling roses near the zoo. if I am asked to name the best papers at the Sozopol conference last September. but it is affection. There is little doubt that narrative skills facilitate recall. 15 . an autobiography always has a hero. the words “Sozopol” and “September”. Cf. 1. Thus my perception of a florist selling roses outside the railway station can prompt a recollection of a scene ten years ago. also John Brough (1975: 40-62). or recollecting something. My account of autobiographical memory is largely based on Husserl’s convincing theory of memory and inner time consciousness. may cue my recalling a few papers. § 35: 216-7. the composition classified as a distinctive type of text according to certain narrative functions. Autobiographies are composed when we think of something that happened to us and tell it to someone. namely See Husserliana XI. as Husserl puts it. I take the concept “autobiographical genre” as applicable to personal tales in oral or written form. rather than perception which is a necessary condition for awakening to. what determines this recognition? Why does (or should) the sight of a florist selling roses awaken my memory of an earlier scene? A tentative answer might be that this scene has an affective force or salience for me and the flower-seller stands out in an affectively charged relief.On Autobiographical Memory 77 past when we recognize and identify what the two have in common. For a more satisfactory recovery I may have to summon further cues by thinking of the people who were there and the various topics discussed at the conference until I again presentify my past experience of the conference and my evaluation of the papers. what is the relation between memory and narration? There are kinds of recollection involving presentification by thinking of something past rather than perceiving it: for example. but should we identify remembering and narration? How is the psychological event of remembering what we were previously aware of related to the verbal expression or memoir? Is the narrative merely a manifestation of that event or does it provide the underlying structure of the episodes we recall? Autobiographical accounts are reconstructions or constructions of our past and hence of ourselves and therefore autobiographical memory is no less a source of fiction than its literary counterpart. The question is. The ‘remembered’ self The question is. I re-constitute or reproduce the past as I presentify it again.2. because it brings into relief a sense that is already implicit in the background and which becomes explicit once more as it emerges into the foreground. identification involves differentiation. 15 Obviously. because she is grasped in a relevant object-like connection.

rather than multiplying the number of selves. have a first person character. I present myself as the protagonist who used certain instruments to achieve a goal in a particular scene or to whom something (usually bad) happened at a particular time and place. we need an awareness of ourselves as well as an awareness of (subjective) time and our sense of self (or selves) is maintained by autobiographical narratives which construct our past by reproducing our experience as we mentally turn towards events of our personal past. But in order to ‘recollect’ ourselves in a narrative. in order to emphasize the discontinuity between present and past identities. For this reason. . for it enables us to weave our personal tale using cognitive as well as cogitative powers. 1965. 278292. the narrative “I” is not a necessary requirement for the sameness of the past and present self. 16 Our episodic or autobiographical memory thus involves narration and constitutes us as a storyteller.S. Paris. 1970. We could even argue that reminiscence requires two selves. of ourselves which is why our accounts of a past experience can have many variations as we re-tell it. Wolf’s narrator deliberates: “And the past. as the German writer Christa Wolf does in her memoir Patterns of Childhood. which can still command linguistic conventions and split the first person into the second and the third – has its hegemony been broken? Will the voices subside? I don’t 16 Cf. on this E. a theory of recollection requires the condition of re-identification for an appropriate description of this event. 17 Our self is subject to change as we modify our accounts of the past and. So autobiography is memory construction and the most important function of this construction lies in providing continuity between our past and our present. However. although they have a common part. In speaking or writing about myself. And the construction or reconstruction of our past experience also provides the basis for constructing another fiction: the remembered self. Strictly speaking past self and present self are not one and the same.78 Chapter Three the person telling his or her story. as our narrative “I” bridges the temporal gap between past experience and present recall. on this Vladimir Propp (1928)’s famous structural analysis in Morphologie du conte. a present and a past self which require a bridging process rather than identification. such as belief. And for the Ancient Greeks an episode (έπείσóδιον) is a dialogue scene in a tragedy. an autobiographer can also use the second or third persons to refer to her past selves. as well as their corresponding narratives. consequently. For although autobiographical memories. Reed (1994) “Perception is to self as memory is to selves”. 17 Cf. thinking and interpreting. éditions du Seuil.

19 See Aristotle. ch. John Campbell (2004) “What is it to know what “I” refers to”: 206-218. As in epic and tragedy. Although the shots (or the representations) don’t make it explicit whose viewpoint is being referred to.On Autobiographical Memory 79 know”. just because it is about one person. For what autobiographical memory represents is not just the character but the past actions and experiences which make up the herocharacter’s life and our recollections must have unity of action if they are 18 Christa Wolf (1976) Kindheitsmuster (2002). For a story is not one. the protagonist who guarantees the continuity of the (re)constructed self – a continuity Wolf exposes as problematic. and “she”.8 (following Butcher’s and Halliwell’s respective translations). 18 Yet in an autobiography. Although the position occupied by the ‘I’ changes in each autobiography. what is of central importance in autobiographical memory (from the narrator’s point of view) is not the main character. Cf. it requires someone to do the counting. 290-306. share a common part. The second aspect of continuity in autobiographical memory is that a rememberer is a single and complex individual – she has more than one part and therefore she also has more than one story. 19 There are two aspects to this continuity: the first one concerns the role of the first person and the second aspect concerns the unity of action. Since autobiographical time is a countable continuity. 20 Even if I have edited myself out of a particular episode. I use his point about the spatial content of vision for showing the implicit first person position in autobiographical memory (which is also a kind of vision). points and counterpoints. they are organized and focused by a first person perspective. Identity and the Fictions of Memory”. 20 Cf. :594. Whilst Campbell examines the question whether our use of ‘I’ has a semantic foundation and discusses spatial relations concerning the first-person position. my translation. framed by the plotstructure or fable. more than one voice and several past tenses in which to tell it. for the continuity called autobiographical time is a mental state. . the personal pronouns “I”. My autobiographical recollection consists of various periods. but the action. the latter will emerge as hero. “you”. situated in and selected by an implicit first person-perspective in a temporal frame with regard to my actual now: thus: ‘before my wedding’ or ‘after my graduation’ are ‘viewpointed’ representations. as in a film subject where a movie is shot as a visual autobiography of a single subject. Poetics. If the action is appropriately built around him. on this Paul John Eakin (2000) in “Autobiography. I am still ‘behind the scenes’ since I am both actor and stage-manager of my autobiographical recollections. the first-person is the one who provides its perspective and goal-directed action – and hence its continuity.

but the basic plot-structure or fable is that of beginning-middle-end. the perfect (aorist) and imperfect tenses temper our recollections by giving movement and pause to our narrative. ‘I had written the letter whilst listening to the news. 21 . but that was before your father called’ is equivalent to ‘your father called after I had listened to the news and written the letter’. In addition. “the imperfect is used by him to whom one day is as a thousand years and the aorist by him to whom a thousand years are as one day”. as well as determining its speed and focus. from a first-person perspective of the present as ‘here’ and ‘now’ because. 23 We use the aorist or historical past when we condense series of actions into one. a self. Usually some cosmetics is needed for improving the appearance of that life.80 Chapter Three to be life-like. a single end (telos). Self-narrative is a necessary ingredient in our (re)construction of a self or selves. (I return to the role of focus in recollection below). since most of our statements concern some part of what belongs to the past and to the future. we remember scenes and episodes and edit them in a narrative form. as the mimesis of action. at least in most Indo-European languages. 23 Jespersen (1924): 276.8. in a sense-making structure to appear coherent and intelligible: events lead up to and are completed by. but they also have the structure of ‘before’ and ‘after’. 1451a in Halliwell’s translation and commentary (1987): 101-105. but probably only on the level of recall and recognition or our reflective referral to a previous experience rather than on the largely implicit levels of encoding and retention. whilst we use the imperfect for focusing on a particular action without abbreviating its duration. Nor is self-portrayal a necessary condition for explicit tasks such as processing and reactivating information. see Otto Jespersen (1924) The philosophy of grammar: 254-277. should be a representation of a unitary and complete action. The temporal distance of a retrospective account is linguistically expressed by tenses: the before-past (ante-preterit). As Jespersen puts it. ch. this is how grammatical structure shows the course of time. Precisely because of this ‘editing’ process. ‘beforenow-after’ or past-present-future. editing or abstracting from episodes we consider inessential. in the Poetics. Aristotle’s condition that “plot-structure. 22 Human teleology and motivation are reflected by linguistic expressions for temporal divisions.narrative is Cf. Past events are ordered according to motive and final purpose. which is why selection and editing are important. Rather. simple past (preterit) and after-past (post-preterit) are the main tenses expressing distant and nearer past times with regard to a 0 point ‘now’. 22 For a clear discussion of tenses.”. 21 Evidently there are various forms of pastness.

for it seems that this form of memory is episodic or scenic rather than narrational.3. Hence our narrative self is a construction where we organize our experience into a coherent and goal-directed unity and this construction necessarily involves confabulation. but also for flashback experiences. whether autobiographical memory can be fully explained in terms of narration.On Autobiographical Memory 81 not merely a recalling and recounting of life events. And our explanation should hold not only for recollections involving thinking rather than perceiving. actions are consequents of character and involve an emotional impact. so the identification of narration and autobiographical memory should be explained. We impose an order on them. such as my ‘seeing again’ the beloved seaside and ‘being displaced’ into the past? Our answer depends on whether we consider narration or description of events as a semantic binding that determines our recollection of the past scene we are reexperiencing or whether we consider our autobiographical memory as consisting of independent episodes – and whether the episode itself is a part or a story. . What is an ‘episode’ in episodic memory and what is the connection between episodes? Is an episode a distinctive incident in a series of related events or is it a sequence of events itself? Regarding autobiographical memory. whether the ‘mise en scène’ is prior to the scene itself. Can I have flashback experiences without a narrative form which determines or prompts my reliving a past event. 1. Since human biographies cast their narrator as hero in their account relating reversal of fortune and recognition which may be brought about by recollection and may require tragic 24 On the narrative self as construction cf. episodes of personal memory have a dramatic plot-structure: they are connected series of events which are emotionally relevant for me as protagonist and narrator and in this sense my recollection is a connected succession of shots which constitute my personal movie. or vice versa. how we conceive an ‘episode’ depends on how we measure our experience – what temporal scales we apply to it and how we focus on our past experience. having considered and decided how they fit together – what to include. The underlying question is. however. Zahavi (2005): 112-113. personal drama represents or imitates action and in an autobiographical recollection. For under an autobiographical description. 24 It is questionable. In addition. what to delete and what to add to embellish our tale – so in selfnarrative events do not and cannot appear in the same way as they were lived.

7. ch. Poetics. for the ‘past’ is indeterminate. Although episodic memory is usually conceived as a memory of something significant that happened in our personal lives. but rather because the continuity of that history allows for the impact of my thesis defense. Episodes can range from minutes to years.82 Chapter Three suffering or pathos. Just as an action is for an end. An episode. as Aristotle points out and episodes are integrated into a composition or plotstructure. depending on the focus of my recollection. although it may be a self-contained part of a larger sequence. 26 This connection which holds ‘for the most part’ is teleological. The episode of the thesis defense fills the gaps between parts of my past and my future. the structure of our recollection is for an end and its components of choice. as in a rondo or fugue and in Ancient Greek tragedies. such as Euridipus’ Iphigeneia in Tauris. 27 In musical compositions. Poetics. its condensation or extension depend on how it surfaces under my description. 1455a-b. On this scale. Episodes are discrete and continuity emerges as a felt subjectivity. I recall my thesis defense accompanied by a feeling of dread and a sense of inevitability that both my past and my future were on the line. ch. I suggest that this significance comes to the fore only against a certain background: I remember my thesis defense as an episode in my own history not just because of its impact. I recall my thesis defense as relevant to my present. such as Orestes’ fit of madness which occasions his capture. action and consequence are aligned according to that end – to cast the self in a panorama of its own making. Aristotle. 25 For it is plot-structure that constructs (rather than mirroring) the experience of our memory. episodes Aristotle. episodes are related in a temporal order as ‘earlier than’ and ‘later than’: my wedding is closer to my actual ‘now’ than my first birthday party. is recalled in terms of the way it became involved with my past experience and it either stands between discrete past events or it stands out from that experience as a component of a larger composition. 1450b20. Episodic or autobiographical memory is backward-looking and motivated by a hypothetical or subjective necessity. as are human actions. Sequences of events are connected in our recollections either necessarily or ‘for the most part’. translated by S. an επεισόδιο occurs between two choric songs. 26 25 . for example. To put it differently. there is an appropriate analogy between Aristotle’s conception of tragedy and autobiography as narrative. Looking back. I focus on my past experience from my present perspective and my first person account is measured by psychological or subjective time (ranging from minutes to years). 17. Halliwell (1987). 27 On a large temporal scale. plot construction precedes episode. an episode is a passage between statements of a main subject or theme.

which is why we have to go back in time to retrieve Cf. 28 My assumption is that if autobiographical memory is conceived as stepwise. ( 250-1). someone made a video clip of the mirror facing a group of tango dancers in an attempt to include himself in the event. for example Gilbert Ryle (1949) Concept of Mind :279. By contrast. sustained by narrative psychologists and philosophers. Yet my autobiographical memory itself is not smooth. Bruner (cited in note 4. Ian Hacking (1995) rejects “memory-politics” or “[t]he doctrine that memory should be thought of as narrative”. a cameraman turned actor in his own movie. R. for I can lose or forget certain episodes in the plot as easily as I can recall others. 29 Autobiographical memory is appropriately described by using a compositional and hierarchichal structure. We also require an assymetric temporal order for explaining our present renewal or retrieval of past representations in recollection. a single scene can be an episode. 29 Cf. I return to this point in section 3. For an intermediate position. In recalling that particular episode (or by looking at the film) I bring to mind other parts of the larger episode. For our experiences precede our recollections. the continuity emerges as something as something I feel because I am attentive to the underlying reasons or motives connecting those events. Their smooth progression in my recollection constructs an apparent continuity between discrete events that is. as for example.On Autobiographical Memory 83 may be either distinct or they may overlap. above). 28 . such as: “I recall the tone I previously heard” that manifest a re-acquisition of my earlier experience which I directly grasp in my recollection as having been experienced by me. also J. that is. Whether a particular episode stands out or not depends on whether it is an attention-magnet. Cf. Fivush et al. ff. What are the conditions for autobiographical memory? The connection between remembering and narrating is an old humanistic paradigm. below. J. on its affective salience. from ground-floor conditions such as retention to reflective conditions of knowledge such as retrieval which imply verbal expressions. 290-306. the ring exchange during a wedding ceremony.) who claims that episodic memory is “the testimony of one’s earlier self” and that an analysis of the form of knowledge involved in memory necessitates a distinction between ground-floor and self-reflective conditions on knowledge. fissures and folds. but has cracks and holes. we can show how these two events are not only related but integrated. 2. cf. Rewriting the Soul. Or an episode can itself be a component of a larger episode: at a party. Campbell (1994 :233. On a smaller temporal scale. Identity and the Fictions of Memory”. Eakin (2000) “Autobiography.

Zur Phänomenologie des inneren Zeitbewusstseins (18931917). Primary memory “comes to us as belonging to the rearward portion of the present space of time and not to the genuine past”. we cannot produce autobiographical narratives. text no. Augustine’s solution to this paradox is to consider past. But on the reflective level. 30 Husserl’s notion of retention provides an answer to the problem: ‘how do I explain my consciousness of the past’? Every single mental state is an awareness of time passing. in making a recollective judgment I resituate the past episode in the context of my personal experience by indicating when and where it occurred and I reidentify a thing as being the same as the one I saw at an earlier time. Ground-floor conditions and primary memory or retention Autobiographical memory is an explicit or conscious recollection of past episodes belonging to one’s personal experience. 2.B. so how does it persist? The present has no duration or. when we measure the duration of an event. It requires certain ‘ground-floor’ conditions. whereas secondary memory is the knowledge of an event “of which we have not been thinking. since it also contains past and future phases. present and future as mental states of memory. .” Principles of Psychology: 646. respectively. 31 Do we perceive temporal extension as past or present? What do we describe when we say that an event or interval has a short or long duration? The past has ceased to be. 50. where the past constitutes itself. as Husserl puts it. a specious duration of which we may be immediately aware but cannot assess whilst the event is occurring. as a judgment that in the past I have experienced the remembered event. N. 648. at best. 11. Both James and Husserl consider primary memory not as ‘justpast’ but as that which is presently attended to. This question concerning our experience of temporality and temporal duration was already posed by Augustine in the paradoxical form of a pastcontaining nowness. William James (1890) made a similar distinction between primary and secondary memory using a terminology akin to Husserl’s. where we see the past or. with the additional consciousness that we have thought or experienced it before.84 Chapter Three a past event. ch. unless we have a sense of temporal direction. 31 Augustine (1961) Confessions. what we are measuring is in our memory and for Augustine it follows that temporal duration is 30 See Husserliana X. attention and expectation. :332. for I re-identify a recollection in t2 as a representation of a past event that occurred in t1. starting with primary memory or retention.1. the narration is part of my episodic memory. So. In other words. Consequently.

the main characters and any other facts that particularly impressed him or evoked his emotions. § 11: 459 Roman Ingarden (1968) Vom Erkennen des literarischen Kunstwerks: 100-106. It seems reasonable to suppose that our experience of temporal duration is subjective and that. . Husserl also avoids the Empiricist’s trap of representing a past moment in the present through association (or a version of the trace theory where memory traces are considered as stored copies or of past perceptions) and on the assumption that representations occur by resemblance. According to Ingarden. Roman Ingarden (1968). we are describing a psychological process. as is the case of secondary memory or recollection. we do not store little pictures or strip cartoons of events in our minds and memory traces are not high fidelity reproductions. (1905). my living memory retains those parts of the novel which are representative of the whole. although it refers to the immediate past. in this sense. a memory of the past. I can retain objects or events relatively distant from my present. 32 So perception is structured in a way that retains the past and retention thus is a presentation (since it is part of perception) and not a representation or presentification. For in living memory. using the notion of living memory (lebendiges Gedächtnis). for example. It seems that living memory functions on the principle of a synecdoche. requires the existence of someone who does the measuring. 32 33 See Husserl. Rather. in turn. I condense and abbreviate the sense of the part I have already read because as I continue reading. such as the culminating phases of events. a rhetorical figure in which a part stands for the whole. but he solves the Augustinian paradox of a ‘now’ that contains a past moment by introducing the notion of retention. advances a different conception of the perceived past. viz. Husserl’s student and critic. Husserl’s point is that retention does not require storage of past experiences because retention is not. time is a mental dimension – since measuring or describing time presupposes the measurability of time which. that which is particularly significant.On Autobiographical Memory 85 an extension or expression of the mind (distentio animi) and that in measuring duration. Husserl agrees with Augustine that our experience of time is subjective and that perception of temporal duration is intimately linked to memory. thus taking me beyond the domain of the actual present. PZB. 33 Ingarden argues that Husserl’s notion of retention does not give us access to the immediate past because its objective domain is part of the present. In reading a novel. Husserl argues that retention belongs to perception: it is a ‘comet’s tail’ joined to the actual perception. living memory is a mode of consciousness in which the past constitutes itself for me. As I argued in part I. as ‘wheels’ stand for ‘car’. strictly speaking.

34 Living memory is a way of bringing the past into the present. Husserl read James and disagreed with the latter’s associationist view but paid special attention to the specious present or the experience of duration.86 Chapter Three since we cannot retain the entire work. For example. so that we can directly perceive its successive phases. But Ingarden attempts to shrink time-consciousness to our apprehension of the immediate present and to explain our consciousness of succession in terms of successive consciousness: we are now conscious of the immediate past by retaining it in living memory. for even if I See Ingarden (1968) : 102. it is an intentional mode directed towards the immediate past which is also a consciousness of succession.” 36 Retention is the consciousness of what is just past and it does not contain echoes or after-images. but a saddle-back. we also have a sense of the past and the future or. Husserl explains our experience of temporal duration using the example of a melody. Ingarden describes living memory as a peripheral and unspecified feeling that something has happened which is closely related to my present. by contrast. I have a living memory of the beginning of a sentence which I have continued to think and add to. including certain consequences which are relevant to what is actually happening now. but the past is perceived in an intentional act directed towards the slipping object. retention is not holding onto the now by its edge. vol 1: 609. 35 That is why he argues that retention belongs to perception and that our perception is structured in a way that retains the immediate past. although it is a present-living-past. I retain the sense of the first note as I hear the second note and I also anticipate the third note. as William James (1890) puts it. I do not just experience a primal impression of one note which is then replaced by the next note. rejects the “dogma of the momentariness of the whole of consciousness” and holds that consciousness must reach out beyond the ‘now’ to the past and future phases of a temporal object. Instead. In our experience of the present. Rather. 36 William James (1890) Principles of Psychology. 35 34 . See John Brough (1996) “Presence and absence in Husserl’s phenomenology”: 3-15. Husserl. whereas Husserl’s retention is a way of bringing the present into the past. See on this Francisco Varela (1999) “The specious present: a neurophenomenology of time consciousness”: 266-306. Unlike living memory. rather like an echo or after-image. It seems that both authors are trying to explain our experience of temporal duration and our consciousness of succession. In hearing a melody. with a certain breadth of its own on which we sit perched and from which we look in two directions into time. our experience of the present “is no knife-edge.

37 .9: 155. Analyses concerning passive synthesis (English translation by Anthony Steinbock). I discuss this point in chapter 4. Sometimes we just know someone or something without recollecting any visual information about them and without situating them in a spatio-temporal context. below. Schacter’s discussion of various views and experiments confirming the role of attention in recalling visual information and the importance of the latter in recollection (1996. it is the momentary phase that is an abstraction we must first construct. footnote 94. we also retrieve sensory perceptions about this person or event and we can situate the present episode in a past context. ‘incapability of being crossed out’ translates ‘Undurchstreichbarkeit’. 39 On the psychological distinction between remembering and knowing the past. This is also how we can distinguish between “remembering” and “just knowing” the past. For example: a person or event can appear familiar to us even if we are unable to recall or place them. 310-311). Phantasy. it has a double intention: on one hand. 23-25 and notes 9-14. I know that there will be another note. see also :241. then as breaking through the haze. Hua vol. cf.” 38 So the second condition for the successful retrieval of a past event is a direct link between my present memory and my past experience and therefore involves a perceptual act. I am certain of hearing the note that has just passed and retentive certainty is a belief that is incapable of being crossed out. Brough. Image Consciousness and Memory (1898-1925). Autobiographical memory is best defined as remembering an episode in my own history: I ‘see again’ the sunset I once perceived. The fulfillSee Husserl. English translation J. 37 We do not reconstruct a melody by perceiving the present note and adding to it a memory of past notes (nor do we recall their full duration). but we are aware of the melody by directly perceiving successive notes. For my autobiographical memory is a window to my past – an elapsed present that once again appears in memory.On Autobiographical Memory 87 do not know the melody. 39 How is situating-in-context relevant to retention? Husserl’s model of intention and fulfillment also applies to remembering. primal impression and protention to which correspond three temporal phases of the object: just past. Husserl claims that our consciousness has a triadic structure: retention. “Now it is seen as if hidden by a veil. Husserliana. XI :345 . Familiarity is an enduring feeling or condition of consciousness but it is incomplete without a recollective act that determines the person or event. vol. I have a memory of an earlier perception which is revived or reproduced and seen again in memory. an object or event is remembered with regard to its temporal extension or enduring content – as something with duration. If we remember them. 38 Husserl. Retention is not only an intentional mode. now and future. If anything. The distinction is Tulving’s (1985).

42 I follow Bennett & Hacker (2003) who formulate this classical distinction in the clearest possible way: “Memory is the faculty for the retention of knowledge aquired. when I successfully retrieve a memory of the play I attended last week. 41 This memory-form is a cognitive ability to recollect what we did yesterday by going back and retrieving that event: episodic memory is oriented to the past. it can be either past. Tulving 1972. 1998. an object or event is remembered with regard to its location or enduring context – when and where it occurred.88 Chapter Three ment of this moment of retention occurs in recall or secondary memory. On the other hand. The object is meant in its temporal determinacy: I remember the play I watched at such and such a point in time. Cf. The fulfillment of the second moment of retention occurs when we actualize a memory which takes us from the past to our actual present. but my episodic memory enables me to place it in time and refer to it as I recollect it from a previous experience.” :154. I am reliving it from my present viewpoint or memory which allows me to reach back to the earlier ‘I’ who watched the play. 40 So. 42 To put it another way: episodic memory involves an awareness of having had past experiences and this awareness is characterized by sensory perceptions which provide a scene for this experience. viz we remember what we were previously aware of. For memory is the capacity for retaining something we were previously aware of. 1983. the statement: “I remember seeing that flower-seller at the zoo yesterday” expresses an episodic memory. 41 40 . The Memento charSee Husserl. when the object is once again intuitively given and appears before me. just as it was seen at that time. I recover this event as I am aware of having had this experience at an earlier time. The remembered event need not be of the past. present or future. It is an explicit recollection of an event I earlier perceived – an act in which a past object or event is intended and posited. For example. whereas recollection is the retrieval or bringing to mind of knowledge retained. Third. we exercise our ability to bring back that event from our own experience. when we restore or renew the temporal continuity – when the episode is situated in a temporal context which gives back its meaning. In recalling what we did yesterday. Recollection is the bringing to mind of knowledge retained. 2002) on the notion of episodic memory. autobiographical memory requires an awareness of ourselves as persons with a history and an ability to travel back in time to retrieve an event from our past. PZB: 185. John Campbell (1994): 233. On the distinction between ground-floor and self-reflective conditions on knowledge. Thus I can remember my appointment at the dentist’s tomorrow morning (if I am aware of having made that appointment at an earlier date). that is. cf.

In a famous experiment. And this self-reflective act 43 E. She has an incomplete sense of what it is like to have that experience because she lacks the capacity to feel it as hers. but because she has lost access to it. probably because her self-awareness has no semantic foundation and she has no semantic or verbal access to that event. viz a sense of ownership. . Reflective conditions and secondary memory or reproduction These ground-floor conditions for autobiographical memory underwrite a set of secondary conditions which are reflective or reproductive.2. The fourth condition states that we have to be able to say that we have had a certain idea. not only because she has not retained it. for recollections are produced by means of a self-reflective act. so she cannot recognize it as something she lived. In other words. Secondary memory or recollection retrieves what is retained in primary memory: it involves re-presentation and presentification. but she could not re-identify this experience as her own. since we lack a temporal horizon or halo against which to situate and delimit (or outline) ourselves. the patient was pricked by the pin and withdrew her hand. Hence she can make an impersonal (and atemporal) generalization but she cannot say why she would not shake the doctor’s hand. but we are literally a figure without a background. a cognition of a past experience is produced by looking at one’s own mental state. We cannot recognize past experiences as ours. 43 She has an incremental and implicit memory of a past experience of a needle’s prick from which she had learned to be wary of shaking hands. This patient cannot make the connection between the event and herself.On Autobiographical Memory 89 acter lacks this awareness – he has no window to his past because he cannot retain his personal experiences in primary or short-term memory. This case illustrates the stepwise structure of autobiographical memory: we have some sense of ourselves if we lack primary memory or retention. Claparède (1911) Recognition et moïté: 79-90. 2. the patient had no explicit memory of the doctor or the incident but she refused to shake his hand because “sometimes there are needles hidden between the fingers of hands that people shake”. The following day. When he shook her hand. nor does she have an inner temporal consciousness of the object and her relation to it. the Swiss neurologist Claparède (1911) secretly attached a pin to his palm before visiting a severely amnesic patient who could not remember him and did not recognize him although she saw him every day. perception or experience before.

We cognize or come to know that we have had a certain experience before – and this cognition modifies our experience as well as our behaviour by reproducing a past informational state in the present. since it is informative about our past. independently of whether or not she is the girl shown in Spielberg’s film. And we have to be able to reidentify a past experience as our own: when I say that I remember drinking a glass of red wine last night. but a cognition. This re-identification is not only a recognition. 44 Autobiographical narrative is an explicit step in this ‘grounded’ or conceptual series of conditions of autobiographical memory. :233). But Roma’s story is the same story. this episode of her past. :227). The fifth condition for autobiographical memory is a sub-condition of the fourth: I re-identify my past experience by looking at my past and retrieving at t2 an event I experienced at t1. made for her by her grandmother. . for the scene depicting the little girl in the red coat prompts her autobiographical memory and she is displaced back into an episode of her own past. This scene stands out because it has affective salience for the narrator and she sees it once again by living in the memory and presentifying. “Her black eyes looked straight into mine. Consider Roma Ligocka’s memoir. In real life. My looking inside myself retrieves a past event when I cognize my past experience by looking at my past and retrieving an event from my own experience. for it is informative about the past since it presents information previously acquired. she recognizes explicitly that she had been – that she still was – the girl in the red coat in Kraków’s Ghetto – a traumatic childhood memory she relives after half a century. also John Campbell (1994. No. but constitutes her past – for it is unlikely that the three-year old girl of the original scene would use the same descriptions as the 50 yearold woman watching the film. The Girl in the Red Coat.90 Chapter Three creates a new cognition of an old experience. maybe also re-colouring. For real. Apparently Spielberg used the image based on another true story and without knowing anything about Roma Ligocka. Consequently autobiographical memory is a cognitive and cogitative ability which depends on autonoetic awareness. So. And I knew whom I had been looking for and from whom I had been so desperately trying to 44 Cf. cf. Roma was reliving a part of her own life. Roma-the-narrator is the girl in the red coat. I am aware of referring to the source of my previous experience. Roma describes the flashback she experienced when she first saw Steven Spielberg’s film Schindler’s List and re-identified herself as that little girl who always wore a strawberry red coat. not in the film. in the film. Her key statement reads: “That was me! The little girl in the red coat. In re-identifying herself. Jérôme Dokic (2001.” As she watched the film. Thus she not only reproduces.

Having outlined the conditions of autobiographical memory. I know who I really am. I remember that I first went to the library to look for the book and then had an argument with a colleague about Kant. I remember that I borrowed it from the library last week (where I saw it before). For a recollective judgment confirms the truth of my recollection. J. Cf. my translation. A recollection involves making a judgment that we have had a certain representation before – this condition corresponds to the declarative nature of episodic memory: we are consciously accessing and retrieving stored information and we can judge that we have had a certain representation before because we can come to know this by accessing our own past.On Autobiographical Memory 91 run all these years and all my life. in t2 as a representation of a past event that occurred in t1. “Remembering that” indicates a doxastic state in my recollection and a cognition: I recognize a representation as having had it in the past. For example. Memory judgments also account for the temporal order of a memory experience. my remembering is said of this book. namely that I have encountered this representation before and this is why my predication is a re-identification rather than an identification. Thus in the judgment: “I remember this book”. In making a recollective judgment I resituate the episode in the context of my personal experience by indicating when and where it occurred and I re-identify a thing as being the same as the one I saw at an earlier time. 45 46 Roma Ligocka (2000): Das Mädchen im roten Mantel :462. . A representation without judgment would not suffice to order events as having occurred earlier or later. I now examine memory’s temporal modes and Husserl’s phenomenological description of lived time and its features of retention and recollection in order to further clarify the underlying problem of explaining and constructing temporal continuity. I am that anxious little girl in the red coat!” 45 Another conceptual part of a recollection is my judgment that in the past I have experienced the remembered event and my re-identifying a recollection. Recollective judgments express the relation between a present rememberer and a remembered object by predicating my present consciousness of a past thing. 169-186. 46 I can fix the reference to a remembered object by means of a memory demonstrative when I assert that I remember this book. When I see the book on my desk. Campbell (2001): “Memory Demonstratives”.

we have to recall the elapsed act as well as the elapsed object so that what is not now present once more appears before us. events unfold in a successive time-span. TIME AND CONTINUITY 0. present and past are reversibly intertwined. we 1 Merleau-Ponty (1968) Le visible et l’invisible: 243-4. In order to do that. as they do in a cinematographic drama.CHAPTER FOUR AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL MEMORY. but recalling it as past. If we read it. as happens in a flashback. ground-floor and reflective conditions we have the distinction between two levels of temporal modes in which events and objects appear to us. Recollection presentifies the past and constructs a temporal continuity of discrete episodes as ‘earlier’ and ‘later’: its sequences are arranged as the parts in a literary work. Retention is the ground-floor level of perceived past events and objects appearing as just-past. Memory is consciousness of the past and that particular consciousness also comes in two steps: retention and recollection. Either our present mode determines our past or our past determines our present – this is what Merleau-Ponty calls the specious reversibility of time: on the intentional level. Merleau-Ponty rejects Husserl’s notion of retention because it is only ‘one-way’. Retention belongs to the structure of perception and hence directly presents its objects. As in literary or cinematographic works. I think he is right. 1 In the first case. Recollection. whereas the relation between past and present is reversible. as we have seen. as well as two corresponding degrees of temporal acts of consciousness. is the reflective level of recalling not only the past object. Introduction On a par with the two levels of conditions for autobiographical memory. on the other hand. although the past’s configuration of the present is not usually something we are aware of and difficult to . autobiographical recollection uses different temporal perspectives and foci of attention: either we bring our past close to our present by betaking ourselves back into that past or we once again live an episode we experienced at an earlier time by presently renewing our experience of that episode.

although unlike aspect-switches. 2 See Clotilde Calabi (2005)’s stimulating paper “Perceptual Saliences”: 253-269. If I notice a large. namely that the idea of temporal duration is derived from a succession of ideas or impressions. a discriminatory capacity which is not an emotion or a perception but rather a capacity for recognizing emotional or perceptual saliences. The ‘now’ is the source of the new. only certain kinds of ‘aspect-switches’ are subject to the will. Husserl’s main point is that the ‘past’ is a result of imagination and affective salience. the past is catching up with us. I argue that such focusing of attention is similar to what Gestalt psychologists and Wittgenstein call ‘seeing aspects’.3: 36-37. whereas the past is the source of the old. so the direction of the temporal arrow is irrelevant.iii. the first sounds slip or sink into the past whilst the second and third sounds are being played. Varela (1999): 266-306. Similarly to switches in temporal perspective from present to past. 4 Hume. the affective salience of the event is detected by my fear of the dog. Retention and attention: modes of temporal continuity Temporal phases have different modes of appearance: the now appears in the temporal position of the present. it is an awareness of the past as it slips away from the present but it belongs to the living present. salivating dog baring its teeth at me. since both ‘past’ and ‘present’ are arbitrary coordinates. I am aware of the threat if I recognize or evaluate that animal as dangerous. I consider attention as an affective state or a sensitivity to reasons. THN I. And I grasp the melody as a whole because I can still apprehend the sounds which are justpast.On Autobiographical Memory 93 willingly turn away from the present and slip or sink into a past mode. . 2 1. 3 The connection between temporal perception and succession probably dates back to Hume’s claim that “[f]ive notes play’d on a flute give us the impression and the idea of time”. 4 But the relation of succession between intervals does not by itself account for our percepevaluate. In this case. 3 See F. whereas the just-past appears as posited in the past. Besides. whereas in the second case. Thus retention does not preserve the content of the past. as it were. maybe independently of our will. What has elapsed is present as just-past because there is an appended remnant or active residue in my perception of the actual now which overlaps with my perception of an earlier now: x recalls y at t2 because there is an overlapping of y at t1 and y at t2. I can mentally distinguish between my experience of the present and that which progressively acquires degrees of pastness: as I listen to a melody. temporal switches are related to an affective state or attention.

we are not examining clock-time but phenomenal time. If I say.” 5 For there is always a ‘now’ or center from which we focus our attention and it is bounded by an intentional horizon of an immediate past into which a present moment sinks or slips. PZB: 217. either on a large scale or a small scale. since I also have a successive morphological grasp of the sense of words. See also Husserl. the “unit of composition of our perception of time is duration. temporal flow not only has to be divisible but divided or broken down into discrete units of duration. In order to be countable or perceivable. that is. internal time or time in first-person experience and the time of objects as they appear in my personal recollection. as well as a projective horizon of an immediate future towards which a present moment protends. All we can measure and objectify is our time-sense and this objectifying endeavour presupposes an observer’s position and the distinction between past. Time’s flow appears discrete because our acts of perceiving time are discrete and ‘divide’ temporal continuity into countable or measurable units of duration. In addition I am aware of the temporal extension of the sequence of a sentence. present and future.94 Chapter Four tion of succession which is why we need the notion of retention or primary memory – to maintain the earlier terms of a series whilst we perceive the actual ones and anticipate the following ones. or word but that requires reflection on the temporal flow and hence a repetition in secondary memory. with […] a rearwardand a forward-looking end. you retain the first phoneme as justpast and anticipate the last one as about-to-appear while you hear the middle phoneme. Similarly. thinking or imagining. a relation between an object and a mental act. such as perceiving. by means of which we compose a perceived succession of ideas. we perceive the succession of tones A^B^… or. the succession of temporal phases within each particular tone. With regard to autobiographical memory. “the dog is barking”. Thus temporal duration is 5 James (1890): 609. respectively. If I say “aeroplane”. you retain “the dog” which sinks into the past as you hear “is” whilst you anticipate another word to complete the statement. As James writes. as well as the succession of the phases of our perception of the sequence A B…. Phenomenal time has a tripartite texture: it is a boundary condition of temporal objects. . You grasp the sense of my statement by means of this ‘saddle-back’ awareness of the present which constitutes our experience of temporal duration. as well as a substrate of consciousness. There is no ‘real’ mental unit of time (or a physiologically absolute duration) because there is no invariant point ‘0’ (a temporal indifference point) between any two intervals of perceived duration. viz a temporal dimension of our acts of consciousness.

cannot be determined by objective timing because we cannot associate the lived time of an episode with a point in objective time. but this awareness does not preserve the content of the past. And. viz primary impression. Cf. since our temporal consciousness has a triadic structure or three act-phases. Libet claims to determine mind time. My point is that in subjective experience. 6 I sustain Husserl and Brough’s claim that the ‘real’ temporal format of an object is not phenomenologically accessible to us and that all we discern is the temporal format of the experienced object. John Brough. But what one retains is not (yet) given as past because retention by itself is insufficient John Brough (1989) “The phenomenology of inner time consciousness”: 272.G. 7 The question of whether our cortex anticipates voluntary decisions such as when to make a certain movement (and whether our free will is a side-effect of our neuronal network). 8 Libet merely maps the conception of an objective time and a continuous real line onto a subjective experience of time without measuring the subjective experience of a movement.On Autobiographical Memory 95 measured by our perception. such as my wrist flexion. not unlike his 19th Century predecessors in Wundt’s laboratory who looked for a physiological time-unit to measure our mental time-sense or sensible present (what W. Retention is the awareness of the past as it slips away from the present. Boring (1941) Sensation and Perception in the History of Experimental Psychology: 579-80. but as a crash of simultaneous sound”. The discreteness (or rather. ‘discretization’) appears with the introduction of limits into this lived semantic continuum of temporal experience and such an introduction of limits involves using the triadic order of phenomenological (and autobiographical) time. James famously called the ‘specious present’). my wrist flexion is grasped as a single meaningful unit or non-discrete whole and this semantic unit has a temporality which does not correspond to objective time-measures such as 100 milliseconds. retention and protention. its objects also have a triadic temporal structure or temporal horizon. would not appear as a melody at all. If our time-consciousness were a consciousness of ‘now’ without the features of protention and retention. as Husserl’s commentator and translator. we could not have an experience of time. points out: “a melody. 8 See Benjamin Libet (2004) Mind Time. 7 6 . Even Benjamin Libet’s (2004) experiments on conscious detection do not provide an objective timing of events composing episodes of my first-person consciousness. whose successive notes were heard all at once as now. a ‘now-phase’ tending rear-wards into a past phase and forwards into a future phase. E. This is why the psychological time of our personal experience is not measurable by mapping it onto the real number continuum.

yet Husserl represents retention as longitudinal or vertical intentionality. however. the experience of the sound and the experience of my hearing the sound. Retention intends moments of the just-past phase of an object or event and it both retains and modifies those elapsed moments. On the other hand.33): 230-237.96 Chapter Four for an awareness of an object as past: I need recollection or secondary memory enabling me to re-identify and recognize an object as past. Phantasie. viz. Perhaps Husserl was aware of the shortcomings in using points and lines for representing temporal extension. at the same time. for it constitutes the temporal halo or horizon of my primal impression. vol. 1917-18) ‘figures of time’ represent these slipping moments and their increasing degrees of pastness in a slope referring to a source-point that is the primal impression in the actual now – the now is the source-point of all temporal positions. Phénoménologie de la perception. Husserl’s (1905. Bildbewusstsein. 11 9 Husserl (1917-1918) Bernauer Manuskripte (Hua. 477) is in PZB. Thus the slippage is a non-linear event. The diagram criticized by Merleau-Ponty (1945. Husserl claims that consciousness is always a nexus (Zusammenhang) and that retention itself has a double intentionality. PZB: 55. The implicit intention becomes explicit in secondary memory. since our perceiving the past is a dynamic and non-linear event. I cannot perceive the actual phase without this periphery of a perceived past. Merleau-Ponty (1945) criticizes Husserl’s diagram as being too static and incorrectly representing time as linear. Erinnerung. 10 Husserl. My perception implicitly intends the temporal background of an object whilst it explicitly presents that object as temporally extended. 320. in which the reproduced past bears the character past. 9 Retention is the active presentation of an absence that arises from our dynamic apprehension of the now which. 28. is a modification of the now as moving from center to periphery. for in the Bernauer Manuskripte (1917-18) he explicitly attempts to represent the temporal continuum and the differences in retentional slippage. Hua 33 :290-2 11 Husserl. . Retention presents just-past phases in their various degrees of pastness or the periphery of the central present phase. 10 Retention intends the past mental act as well as the past object of that act – or the duration of temporal experience as well as the duration of temporal objects and events. I can have no experience of an object’s constancy or an event’s duration because my emergent perception is accompanied by a comet’s tail of my just-past perception. Without primary memory or perceived past. I am aware of a sound that has just died away because the now and the just-past are present to me.

Instead of hearing a melody. past phases are not preserved in an unmodified way. respectively. we do not recall them in real time but ‘edit’ them by segmenting them or cutting out details and then compiling our past perceptions – as does a movie-maker – in subjective time. rather than perceiving an episode in dynamic succession. a single image would remain frozen in our mind. has a shifting orientation in relation to the living now. which can happen in recalling traumatic events.On Autobiographical Memory 97 According to Husserl. Husserl’s main concern is. protention) my experience lacks temporal continuity. viz in a coherent sequential order of ‘earlier’ and ‘later’. the semantic and precognitive structure of temporal perception. The ‘now’ we presently perceive punctuates or cuts off the horizontal continuity. viz the abscissa of a coordinate point 0 on the x axis. momentary phases t1 to tn are introduced as ideal limits and these limits or points are accompanied by shadows or modifications – the retentions slipping into oblivion. He points out that retention preserves and modifies past phases: the latter do not continue to stand out from the temporal flow. Each past moment modifies the present: to the actual ‘now’ is joined a comet’s tail of retentions which slip or sink into the past. Husserl’s main point is not that without retention (and. for otherwise we could not perceive a temporally extended object or event. Point 0 is the limit between appearance and retentional horizon. but they retain fixed temporal positions in relation to each other: note a at t1 precedes note b at t2 which is succeeded by note c at t3. such as a melody and the vertical axis depicts the phases of consciousness or the continuity of temporal experience. but also in relation to preceding past phases. so that each temporal place traverses the continuum of past phases and each past moment is past not only in relation to the present. we would only hear a single note or. whilst showing the relation of the temporal object to my living now. On this abscissa. since our subjective experience is discrete – a feature which becomes apparent on a larger scale: when we recall episodes of our past. For the temporal thing. such as a car crash. So. The diagram represents how we perceive events in a temporal order and. inner time is composed of two continua – a horizontal continuum of temporal places is connected with a sloping continuum of past phases. Husserl’s diagram is an attempt to depict temporal succession and to explain how the temporal order of earlier and later (and our idea of the past) arises. I think. despite its shortcomings with regard to the dynamicity of perception. Therefore he uses a coordinate system with a vertical and a horizontal axis: the horizontal axis depicts the continuity of an object or event. In this sense . although inserted into the temporal form. Husserl explains how temporal distance or the horizontal axis arises.

This retention is not an after-image or some kind of picture. in our perceptual experience discrete events appear continuous because they overlap and we order them sequentially because of this overlapping. as something with a foreground and a background. Our apprehension is dynamic and schematic on a non-conceptual level: we introduce limitations into our own spatio-temporal coordinate system of ‘I. 12 Similarly. 13 They can only be exhibited in the coordinate system of our first-person narrative where we first introduce limitations or temporal intervals and then recast what we hear into a coherent sequence. 14 To put it differently.7 on the deictic field and deictic words. The figure and background are a dynamic duo because perceiving the past (and the present) is 12 13 See Husserl. before and after or. Retention as temporal background We perceive an enduring temporal object as inserted into a temporal order of now. § 19. In observing a process or course of events such as a shooting star or a bird in flight. See on this Hermann Weyl’s phenomenological and mathematical analysis of the continuum (1918) Das Kontinuum.98 Chapter Four our re-lived experience is a construct and the momentary phases of a perceived succession are ideal limits of that succession which we perceive in a continuous flow. our experience of hearing a long sound is continuous because we perceive it as a whole by synthesizing it from discrete points – we cannot grasp it as a continuum because a continuum is indecomposable – and its points are non-independent entities that exist only as points of transition. PZB (1905). PZB :217. ch. to use Husserl’s spatial metaphor. our experience of temporal duration and an object’s persistence is constituted by unitary interrelations of alterations of that object – as Husserl puts it – or overlapping: there is an active residue or trace (of a just-past) in my perception of the actual here-andnow and that is why primary memory is also my perception of the now. but a mode of presentification of an earlier now and thus a presentation of the past which is a non-independent moment of the present. . ‘here’ and ‘now’ in order to construct a continuous perception which spans across discrete events.1. PZB : Beilage VI. I segment or dissolve this duration into grains or blurs (rather than independent points) within a delimited subjective time-span ranging from just-past to now-becoming. 113-114 . 15 1. Husserliana 11 (Analysen zur passiven Synthesis) : 371. Phenomenal time is duration without points: when I perceive a train rushing into the station. see also John Bell (2000): “Hermann Weyl on intuition and the continuum” 14 see Karl Bühler (1934) Sprachtheorie. 15 Husserl.

our object recognition (our identification of shapes) is determined by the qualitative segregation of an image into figure and background or to which region we assign the contours. We fail to assign the contours to that region and do not discriminate the figure from the ground. Consequently. the ‘background’ is the part that is more distant or in the past. we may recognize (or not) the contours of a certain country it is meant to represent. I hear a melody if I discriminate the form of the musical motif – if I understand the organization of the tones and recognize the whole as a melody. it is our assignment of an image region as ‘figure’ or ‘background’ that determines on how we perceive a shape. that is. When reading a map. We look at a map of Europe and recognize the shape of an area corresponding to the Black Sea but we may fail to see or segregate the contours of Bulgaria which remain in the background because they are not salient. because our attention is focused on the ‘figure’. for example. 16 And the assignment of an image region as ‘figure’ or ‘background’ determines on how we perceive a shape. Hence we cannot identify or recognize the figure. because our attention is focused on the ‘figure’ or that which has contours. the background shape is not registered as having a shape at all. on whether we notice it or not. Rubin used the figure-ground structure for explaining that what is perceived as ground and what is perceived as figure do not have a shape in the same way. When looking at reversible figures such as the vases and faces or the double cross. its construction is 17 16 . 17 Edgar Rubin (1921) Visuell wahrgenommene Figuren. Frequently. viz segregating a visual image into a figure and background is a step in perceptual organization which is part of the visual process. one shape becomes the background of the other: either we see a white cross on a black ground or vice versa. Carl Stumpf (1911) introduced the notion of concordance as an organizational principle of tone perception or the “good fit” of a chord within a particular key – akin to the law of Prägnanz or ‘good form’ in visual perception. In a similar vein. whereas the ‘figure’ emerges in the temporal foreground. “We call concordance that feature of the chord which marks it a concord. In temporal terms. But why? The fact that physiological findings seem to corroborate Rubin’s claim does not solve the semantic problem of how we determine which two sides of a contour are at the front or how we interpret the image by assigning the owner of the contours. Gestalt psychologist Edgar Rubin (1921) claimed that something can only be perceived if it appears against a background.On Autobiographical Memory 99 a dynamic and non-linear event: I retain the moments just now slipping away as I perceive an actually present moment and I could not perceive a present moment unless it stands out in relief against a background of slipping just-past moments. Nonetheless. on whether we notice it or not.

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When my perception is directed towards something, I single out (and recognize) the figure from the ground by attending to the contours. According to Rubin and Husserl, the contours and the region bound belong together, as illustrated by ambiguous figures such as the vases and faces or the black/white cross. We do not see the two shapes simultaneously. In temporal terms, the ‘background’ is the part that is more distant or in the past, whereas the ‘figure’ is in the temporal foreground. I presently hear a melody or perceive a figure as something which emerges from a background. Husserl argues that the foreground is nothing without a background and the appearing side is nothing without the nonappearing side: “the reproduced duration is the foreground; the intentions directed towards the insertion [of the duration into time] make conscious a background, a temporal background.” 18 A plausible explanation for our ‘recognizing a whole’ or perceiving a figure against a background is that we perceive groups rather than singular elements, types rather than particulars and invariants rather than variables. We perceive a figure or an organized whole with regard to a group of its possible variations or transformations. The claim that we recognize invariants presupposes a form or schema of which individual situations are (variable) instances, a relation of one-many and a law by which we pick out the pattern or group or to measure the change in data. Ernst Cassirer uses the group concept to correlate perceptual constancy and geometrical transformations or the perceptual flux and the mathematical continuum in order to explain our perception of discrete spatio-temporal objects. On his view, a percept or a geometrical figure has describable properties which do not change if their system of coordinates changes: for example, the sides of a triangle that do not change under the rotation through a definite angle or an alteration in scale, are a group which is invariant under changes in the system that describes it. 19 Likewise, the parts of an ambiguous figure
according to the principle of the maximum quantity of tones with the octave, in ascending order according to the degrees of consonance […] with the fundamental [note]. “Konsonanz und Konkordanz,”: 134, my translation. 18 “Kometenschweif”; see Husserl 1905, §§ 14, 25 in PZB, :35, 55 ( English translation of PZB by J. Brough) cf. also Hua vol. 11: 371. The other metaphor Husserl uses is that of halo (Hof) or horizon. PZB, 3: 105; 45:304, Hua, vol.22 (1913) : 241-243; Hua, vol. 26 (1908): 218. 19 Schema logic and the method of variation are used by philosophers, logicians and mathematicians (such as Bolzano and Frege). Depending on the theory, the form (or schema, collection or class) either precedes an instance or is generated from instances (or situations), so that variation either presupposes or induces a conceptual or logical form. Ernst Cassirer (1944) relates perceived constancy and conceptual form by presupposing the formation of invariants (or groups) in percep-

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such as Boring’s young/old woman (where one part is the background of the other) do not change, regardless of whether it is considered as the sideview of a young woman’s head or the three-quarter view of an old woman’s face. 20 The law governing recognition of a whole postulates an invariance through changes of context or system of reference. This invariance does not lie in the percept (or the intuitively given figure) since, depending under which geometrical system we consider its properties, a circle is transformed into an ellipse and an ellipse into a parabola or a hyperbola. Rather, it lies in “the rule by which the elements are related to each other”. 21

1.2. Attentional rhythmics and salient phenomena
Figure/ground segregation is an attentional modification or emphasis by contrast. We see something by putting it into relief. And to grasp an event or object we recede from it and, by withdrawing from it, we play it in counterpoint. A figure emerges against a background. This change of place or movement from ground to figure where something is put into relief is a result of what Husserl calls attentional rhythmics (attentionale Rhythmik) or the rhythmics of noticing (Rhythmik des Bemerkens). 22 The relation between rhythm and attention probably dates back to Wundt (1896), the father of experimental psychology – the battlefield of various philosophical and psychological interests which eventually split between empirical and descriptive psychology and between philosophy and psychology. According to Wundt, the visual field (Blickfeld) consists of a focus and a margin and contains the viewpoint (Blickpunkt) of attention or range of apperception. One of his reasons for investigating rhythm was to determine the temporal range of our awareness – to measure the span of attention on a particular scale, as well as to determine rhythmic kinesthetic sensations (rhythmische Tastbewegungen) as a source of temporal repretion and geometrical transformations by referring to group theory. Cassirer points out that the notion of ‘group’, first introduced by Cauchy relates mathematical and perceptual domains. He discusses Helmholtz’s and Klein’s views on geometry and relates them to Hering and Gestalt psychologists’ experiments concerning the phenomenon of perceptual constancy (or variation, as in Rubin’s figures). He argues that the projective transformations of geometrical figures is grounded on the same laws (of group transformation) as perceptual phenomena. “The concept of group and theory of perception”: 1-36. 20 E.G. Boring (1930): “A new ambiguous figure”: 444-5 21 Cassirer (1944) : 8. 22 Husserl (1893-1912) Wahrnehmung und Aufmerksamkeit, Texte aus dem Nachlass, Hua vol. 38: 283-293; cf. also Ideen I, Hua vol.3, §§ 35, 37.

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sentations (Zeitvorstellungen), in order to ascertain a physiological basis of the sense of time. 23 Husserl also investigates the temporal range of our consciousness using the notions of attention and rhythm but the parallel between him and Wundt goes only so far, since Husserl not only proposes a top-bottom model in his revision of Brentano’s descriptive psychology but explicitly rejects the naturalization of consciousness and the empirical method of investigating mental acts. 24 Husserl uses the searchlight metaphor (Strahl) 25 in referring to the temporal structure of a representation and the corresponding temporal phases of an object: the searchlight or attentionspan is directed to the actual now-phase of an object which is surrounded by a temporal horizon of ‘before now’ and ‘after now’ – viz the retentional and protentional phases of our awareness of an object or the range of apperception. Husserl considers attention as the basic function of spontaneous awareness or a basic mode of synthesis and he distinguishes between noticing (bemerken) and paying attention to something (aufmerken). Noticing is a passive feature of attention or passive mode of synthesis which denotes an activity without being a spontaneous act. If I notice a purple spot on your chin, my attention is affected by this spot which comes to the fore without my intending it or being oriented towards it, as would be the case if I were paying attention to the purple spot. In noticing it, I am not actively engaged with it, yet in my perception of your chin something emerges, viz is raised up (Hebung) without being intended by a mental or linguistic act. For Husserl rejects the two-component theory of perceptual change according to which attentional content is composed of perceptions and intentions or identical attentional matter and attentional form where only the latter changes, whereas the former remains the same. For attention is not intention or a distinct intentional act but a modification of a mental act and we do not send an attentional beam into an appearance which then takes on the features of the beam. Rather, our grasping of the phenomenon is activated. A correct description of the perceptual process cannot be that we
Wilhelm Wundt (1896) Grundriss der Psychologie, § 11 :174-5. Cf. on this Edwin G. Boring (1941): 583. 24 See Husserl (1911) „Philosophie als strenge Wissenschaft“: 294-310. N.B. In a critical discussion on Wilhelm Wundt, Husserl (1913) also points out that, unlike Wundt’s attempt, his own method really is a ‘reform of psychology’; “A draft of a ‘preface’ to the Logical Investigations” in Introduction to the Logical Investigations, § 12: 54. 25 Hua, vol.26 (Bedeutungslehre, ergänzende Texte) : 218
23

since the latter’s appearance depends on the perceptual process. taking on contours. to a sensitivity to reasons: a ‘because’ or ‘therefore’ attitude that grounds and justifies our actions. vol. Wahrnehmung und Aufmerksamkeit. See Husserl.On Autobiographical Memory 103 send an attentional beam into an unchanging phenomenon. Hua vol. post-its. By exercising our capacities of deliberation and discrimination. the sides of which are decorated by certain figures and colored in different hues. such as the lamp. then I heed it by deliberating my course of action or whether I should extinguish it. Motivation has a directive power on attention and this power belongs either to an affective force. Wahrnehmung und Aufmerksamkeit. the keyboard and the screen. For we are aware of an appearance without intending it or being oriented towards it. so that there is some distance between myself and what I see and this distance enables me to ‘measure’ what I see and gain a perspective of it with regard to its relative position and its distance from me. My focusing on the cup puts this object in relief by contrasting it with a 26 27 See Calabi (2005: 253-269). I determine it more precisely as an ashtray. 26 A perception is informed or modified by an attentional beam (Strahl) but retains an abstract feature. as well as my receding from the desk. salience is a property of the phenomenon which provides reasons or motivations to which our mental acts relate by discriminating it. although our perception is modified by acts of presentification or attentional modes. I see a burning cigarette on the table. Rather. we thus construct perceptual saliences as reasons for our actions. my cup of coffee emerges from amongst the other objects scattered there.38: 282. Nor can we rightly claim that we have an enduring perceptual awareness in which our intentional acts emphasize or make something salient. 28 Our perception has a rhythmical quality or differentiated distribution and an alteration of the attentional mode is necessary for a phenomenon to stand out and be grasped by an intentional act. I see the ashtray. and now I grasp what I had so far passively noted and not definitely determined.38:282. books. . Hua. Then an imaginary picture emerges in my perception. I notice it. An alteration in my attentional mode is necessary for noticing the cup emerging from the background. such as desire or. I extinguish it because I am aware of the dangerous possibilities that could result from my letting it burn. 28 See Husserl. 27 In this way. In paying attention to what I see. Looking at my desk. Husserl describes changes in perception and recollection in terms of foreground and background in order to distinguish between different aspects of the perceptual process. as I should like to argue. the ashtray appears as a specifically intended phenomenon which has the property of salience: it is the foreground of my perception.

or is salient of. are analogous not only to a change in focus or orientation. a concrete phenomenon with a character of remembrance or modified perception.104 Chapter Four more undefined background. Likewise. so that the past appearance is presentified: ‘I see again’. since what appears is not what is now perceived but what has been perceived. This change of pace accounts for the differentiated distribution in our perception or the rhythmical quality of our attention. a phenomenon emerges with an attentional form. I can once again heed what I heeded at an earlier time. Husserl extends his doctrine of attention to recollection: attentional modifications retain an abstract feature in a changing perception and the background modes of perceptual acts also have an objectual relation. A perceptual salience can be represented by a whole number or integer. An alteration in the attentional mode modifies the recollection. But my heeding is not part of my modified recollection. rather it is a modifier of my recollection. the cup emerges from. since it occurs in my actual now. a perceptual salience is a countable unit or number (αριθμός). Perceptual alterations between foreground and background. Also. it involves adjusting to a change of place by a change in pace and attentional rhythmics accounts for the latter. just as the retentional process modifies the original impression. Thus. In a note on attentional alterations in recollection. recollection is not to be analyzed as consisting of two related moments viz an attentional form and an identical attentional matter. for it emerges from a continuum of real numbers or discrete entities which remain in the background as transitional points lacking contours unless they are detected and brought to the fore or constituted as salient by a modification of our sensitivity or a change in our attentional mode. Hence. the desk. Focusing is an adjustment of the eye to see things at different distances. for how can I modify a past perception? A recollection modifies the appearance of a perception and the modification is temporal. since it can be discriminated. The other modification concerns location: a recollection either situates me in the past or it places what I remember before me. What emerges in attentional rhythmics is arrhythmic and a-rithmetic in the sense that it is discriminable against the foreground-background rhythmics of attention and can be individuated or identified as an individual whole. where certain things stand out whilst others remain backstage or out of the attentional spotlight. more precisely an alternation between two modes of attention. But this seems contradictory. but also to a change in pace between different perceptual modes. For an object or event to emerge or stand out in relief. from my actual perspective. a change in the speed of my perception of it is required. If a recollection emerges. I can now overlook an object or event I singled out in my recollection and instead focus .

If I then orient my attention to the shop window I co-perceived. Hua. our perceptual space is transformed into a stage where the viewer or speaker presents (either to himself or to an audience) a scene or an imagination-oriented deixis. 29 My attentional alterations of this recollection do not belong to what I remember (so in that sense the past perception is unmodified). ‘here’ or ‘there’. .38:294. Or I displace the mobile phone in my imagination. I further discuss imagination-oriented deixis in recollection in Kasabova (2008): 331-350. Sprachtheorie. 30 Since recollection involves presentifying things that are absent. I thus alter my standpoint in imagination. here is my PC. as a small body close by or a large body far away. In the first case. ‘down’. I can subsequently direct my attention to the shop-window constituting the backdrop in what I perceived and I have a ‘recollection’ (Erinnerung’). hear or read by using their imagination: one person guides another with orientation clues for displacement in imagination or imagination-oriented pointing: I remember the walk I took along the Seine: ‘I was here. he was there and the river was glittering to our right’. ‘left’. but I do remember that I just heeded a silvery mobile phone. Deixis pointers are anchored in our bodily coordination system: ‘up’. See Karl Bühler (1934). these pointers are orientation clues integrated in our own (displaced) coordinate system to orient ourselves (and our hearers) in imagination. In this case I describe a situation or event using deictic clues: “this is my desk. from a bird’s eye perspective.On Autobiographical Memory 105 on its background which now emerges in a new light in my attentional alteration . I can ‘move around’ in my recollection. vol. right there is the silvery mobile phone which caught my eye’. Whether an object comes to me or whether I am displaced into an imaginary journey depends on whether I am recollecting an action or an event and on my perspective or position: either I have a bird’s eye view or I am positioned in the location I am recalling: I either have a scenic memory of my office or my recollection posits me sitting at my desk in the office. Wahrnehmung und Aufmerksamkeit. my attentional pace adjusts to the background but what is adjusted is not my perception but my imagination. In a recollection I am displaced into an imaginary change of location: ‘here is the shop-window. In recollecting or re-presenting something the way I perceived it. using indicative coordinates which he or a hearer can see. In recollection. so that it now stands before me. using what Karl Bühler calls imagination-oriented deixis. my office is salient of my panoramic memory of my working scene which I visit in an imaginary journey. 29 30 Husserl. 1965: 134-40. for in recollection my focusing is imagination-oriented. ‘right’. In recalling my earlier perception of a silvery mobile phone.

the object is identified and appears fully in the foreground – it is intended explicitly in my recollection. I describe a scene as an action: I recollect myself as working in my office. Husserl uses the concepts of halo and core for describing the intentional directions of fulfillment with regard to external perceptions. In the latter case. Husserl uses the concepts Hof (halo) and temporal horizon (Zeithof) for naming the background. Attentional alterations in recollection are similar to filming technique in that both are based on perceptual selection and displace the viewer using imagination-oriented deixis: for a coherent visual narrative. vol. Either I move around in the room or I have a bird’s eye-view of the room as a scene. to the periphery or inwards. so that my desk is salient of my office from my recollective viewpoint in situ.3. my recollection is a modified version of the dinner that was present last night and now hovers before me as I am directed towards it. Hua. an object built according to its background and foreground or halo and core. but intentional modifications of perception: in such acts. In the second case.22/1: 141-3. In recalling my childhood home I see the living room: my imagination-oriented pointers moves from the blue wallpaper to a Persian rug and a couch in the corner. 1. Entwürfe zur Umarbeitung der VI logischen Untersuchung. The direction of my recollection can point outwards. When I presentify last night’s dinner.106 Chapter Four there are my folders”. Husserl’s halo and core metaphors Unlike retention and attention. as well as the duo core (Kern) and halo (Brough’s English translation of Hof) for the semantic relation between a mental act and its temporally structured object. viz. we cut scenes in certain places. 31 See Husserl (1913). A recollection or presentification is directed either towards the halo or the core of a perception and consequently the object appearing in that perception is determined closely or fully. the object remains vague and some features do not appear but are intended implicitly. perceptions are reproduced and thus modified. In the former case. 240-3. acts of presentification such as recollection or phantasy are not only modificational acts. to the core (the perception). we focus on a particular action and changes of point of view occur for the viewer as the camera jumps from long-distance to close-up and around. displacing the viewer by using deictive coordinates. 31 The concepts halo and core refer to our ‘grasping’ (Auffassung) of a temporal object in a representation and this is ultimately a question of focusing and attentional rhythmics. .

The Rhetorica ad Herennium recommends using background scenes or places and foreground images which should be carefully outlined. whereas a halo rather denotes the latter. so that “every perception has its retentional halo and its protentional halo”. . English translation by Harry Caplan.xviii-xx: 211-15. The ‘Kern’ – a kernel or nucleus – is the central. The temporal halo is double. Hence recollection or secondary memory has a temporal halo because that halo is a property of the perception intended by a recollection which. Situated at the centre. 1954. in that it is orientated towards the future as well as towards the past. Perception is always accompanied by halo (Hof) or spatial and temporal nexus. Camillo’s memory theatre also has a court or ‘Hof’ at its centre. most significant part of a whole. depending how we focus on or organize the contours. in the same sense that background and foreground are interchangeable. has the court or atrium is at its centre.” 33 A ‘Hof’ can be either an enclosed area or a surrounding area. so that the house is at the centre (the Kern) of its ‘Hof’. and Husserl’s ‘Hof’ and ‘Kern’ metaphor: ‘Hof’ literally translates as court (or courtyard). insofar as the background may switch into the foreground. III. attributed to Cicero. either automatically or at will. the horizon is shown as that which determines the contours. as well as visual imagery for anchoring words or numbers we wish to memorize. especially if the horizon turns out to be hidden inside the appearing figure. 32 There is an interesting analogy between the ‘memory theatre’ developed by Giulio Camillo in the 16th Century. having originated in the system of place memory. however. Usually the latter surrounds the building. “And thus each thing in perception has its reverse side as background. 1984. see Frances Yates (1966) The art of memory. as a modification of a percep- 32 Rhetorica ad Herennium. although we may assume that the source of light surrounding an object or divine being comes from within rather than without. For a detailed account of memory systems. in which the place system evolves to forming images within an architectural framework. A Roman house. PZB :304. Or maybe Husserl covertly uses two synonyms: ‘Hof’ and ‘Kern’ which denote interchangeable places. See on this Sorabji (1972 : 22-30) who also suggests that various expressions such as ‘in the first place’ or ‘commonplace’ may have been transmitted to the present day via Aristotle’s Topics and the Rhetoric. 33 Husserl.On Autobiographical Memory 107 The spatial metaphors of background and foreground also connotate mnemonic techniques for developing memory: the place system always has a background on which to place one’s figure (or number or parts of a speech). just as we organize the contours of an ambiguous figure.

Bildbewusstsein…:266. 2005).108 Chapter Four tion. Entwürfe zur Umarbeitung der VI. a past that is relative to its now. 37 Husserl. but it is also a terminus of tendencies. 22/1: 143. Phantasie. 37 The horizon is what bounds the now – it conditions our experience of an appearance because it warrants the overlapping or congruence Husserl. when discussing what appears in my apprehensional act when I am turned towards something. our earlier experience is thrown into relief against a background of other recollections. that this thing I see now is the same as the one I saw yesterday. It itself has a background of the past (Vergangenheitshintergrund). This core fills the intention of my retention. “Every memory of which one is specifically conscious is a privileged member of a vague surrounding memory. (English translation by Brough. also contains the perception’s temporal horizon. 1908 (Hua vol. Husserl claims that the Hof and particularly the Zeithof is essential for the relation of signification (Sinnesbeziehung) between an act and the enduring object.” 35 My recollection of hearing the song of the mermaid Lorelei on the barrel-organ stands out from the background of the past as I focus on the song I heard then. 241-2. 36 Halo and core are a duo in the sense that the former is intentional. But the reason why my attention is focused on a given appearance lies in the temporal horizon. Every memory tends forward [it places what it remembers before it]. whereas the latter is the fullness or the core filling the intention. Likewise. Cartesian Meditations:44-45. The barrel-organ piece is the retentional core (Kern) or full appearance. the temporal horizon also acts as boundary condition for memory itself: which “exists in a nexus of memories with an order terminating in the actual now of perception. Bildbewusstsein… : 296. 284. viz for the awareness.” The appearance standing before me in recollection is what has been given in perception at an earlier ‘now’. also: Experience and Judgment:166. the appearance on which my attention is focused. 36 Husserl uses ‘Kern’ as a synonym of ‘Erscheinung’. 34 It is perception which provides the possibility of awakening or anticipating – of retention or protention. 34 . 296. of a memorial background (Erinnerungshintergrund). The retentional and protentional halo posits the boundary conditions of experience because it acts as a constraint on what appears. 35 Husserl.26:177). Bildbewusstsein…: 263. PZB: 105. Vorlesungen über Bedeutungslehre. Cf. Logischen Untersuchung (1913) Hua vol. what we have seen or heard at that time and as recollection intends it. Phantasie. viz the phenomena or the ‘Kern’. see Phantasie.

Consciousness of concordance and retentive certainty Husserl agrees with Kant that we need recognition in order to relate different representations but. this synthesis requires memory as well as a rule of apperception or capacity for judging in accord with a rule for applying concepts: we have to be able to judge that an earlier and a later representation are representing the same object. the ‘synthesis’ of recognition combining recollection and present perception is the passive synthesis of a retentive certainty of what is just past. for him. nor a cognition. The ‘now’ of the rememberer overlaps with the remembered ‘now’. Bildbewusstsein…:244. a belief which is a modality and neither an attitude. The retentional and protentional halo allows for the temporal continuity and unity of an enduring object. except that. A126. In a recollection. nor does it require a normative rule governing the use of concepts. Husserl.On Autobiographical Memory 109 (Deckung) of our past and present meaning : what I see is always accompanied by a temporal horizon and a retentional halo. the halo of presentification (of the appearance) will be the mode of remembrance and the core is the remembered thing. This discrete overlapping is a basis of identification of an object which occurs via the relation of signification. particularly in recollection. so there is a congruence of his past and present experience: the fullness of his present experience is ‘dimmed’ on the periphery of the fullness of the past experience and vice versa. It is a consciousness of concordance (Einstimmigkeitsbewusstsein) belonging to the representing intention: “an impressional intention that refers to a nexus of intentions through which the relation to the actual now is brought about. a passive synthesis grounding my belief that the enduring thing is the same. since memory displaces what is remembered in its own nexus of pastness. A121. Brough translates Einstimmigkeitsbewusstsein as consciousness of harmony. depending on what he attends to. 38 1. Phantasie. 39 38 . The See Kant. Our belief is an awareness of a complete accord between the two representations and this awareness is grounded on a temporal nexus composed of protentional halos. KrV. according to Kant. And retention is a mode of belief-certainty that is incapable of being crossed out because it belongs to what is just past.4.” 39 We have a retentive certainty that this thing I see now has the same sense as that one I saw yesterday because the two representations have an overlapping temporal horizon. This is what Kant calls synthesis of recognition. A115. retentional halos and a memorial halo.

they do not have the same meaning and I must adjust the sense of my recollection as grounding the non-identity of the object. The nexus of retentional and protentional halos connects the recollection to the actual now of perception. changes. For the appearing thing. Perception allows for degrees of presence and empty retentions let the past appear with degrees of pastness. below. our 40 See Husserl. I develop this point in section 2. For the appearance – say. etc. . what I now see as the same thing as I saw then. the terminus of the recollection. Phantasie. This sameness of meaning gives continuity and unity to the object. etc. the appearance of the tower – is a temporal being which endures. but is it this one (the same one) I saw last night? Maybe they only overlap in part. Bildbewusstsein… :295-6. 40 This appearance of the hovering theatre is a temporal being – it has duration. An immanent tone also endures. but it is not an appearance. disappears and now it reappears. changes. as our present perception and past recollection are inserted into the temporal order of our experience. I situate the tower in its connection with a background (the hill) and the retentional halo gradually fills out with the contours of the appearing tower – the vague halo becomes determinate. The halo is the sense directed towards the nexus and if the intended sense of the appearance overlaps with the sense of the nexus in which I posit the appearance. My recollection is enabled by the intentions (the retentions and protentions belonging to the perception as well as to the memory) embedded in the temporal halo. If the two theatres do not completely overlap. The consciousness of concordance is a necessary condition for recollection and recognition (Wiedererkennen) first. Second. then they have the same meaning. because it grounds the continuity of our recollection: we represent the same thing by means of similar memory images: I remember a house. There is a complete overlapping if and only if I recognize the recollected theatre as being the same one as the perceived theatre. a recognition.110 Chapter Four halo of the recollection overlaps with the retentional halo of the perception in which the appearance was presented. For Husserl. The meaning (Bedeutung) of a recollection also depends on the nexus in which I posit or think the object: I remember the tower on the hill. or cognizing again occurs only in an act of agreement or concordance (Uebereinstimmung) which enables our identification of this. The emptiness of the retentions is fulfilled in recollection: I see an illuminated theatre. The remembered theatre may be a different one than the one I presently perceive. and during my recollection now it sinks away. our recognition is based on a fundamental modification of perception as recollection to which belongs a consciousness of concordance. persists as a unity and for it to appear to us. the temporal object. PZB : 185. Last night’s illuminated theatre now hovers (schwebt) before me.

This passive synthesis of belief is a certainty that a semantic relation 41 42 Husserl. the coordinate point 0 is the limit between appearance (on the horizontal axis) and sense (Sinn) (on the vertical axis) – 0 is an intention or modification that can find its core. Husserl is saying that I don’t recognize the appearance but I grasp the relation between sense and appearance – the concordance (Uebereinstimmung) between words and an object. 42 In Husserl’s diagram of time. in the process of identification. 43 Thus sense conditions our awareness of the appearance. which is why we need a belief or Einstimmigkeitsbewusstsein. the sensation of consonance is a result of tonal fusion. the continuity of fading sensations that pertain to the sensations belonging to earlier nows”. Husserl’s notion of consciousness of concordance probably originated in Carl Stumpf’s (Husserl’s ‘Doktorvater’) research on dyadic tonal fusion or blending (Verschmelzung) and his distinction between consonance and concordance (see note 65 above on Stumpf’s notion of concordance). in the case of secondary presenting. . According to Stumpf (1898). but it is physically present (ist doch leibhaftig da). we cannot posit (or believe) the tower without a retentional and memorial halo. 41 It is the retentive trail that extends the nowpoint of the tone. our searchlight spans across the appearance’s undetermined halo of ‘before’ and ‘after’. For an appearance has duration and duration cannot be represented without being posited in a temporal nexus. a dark recollection is fulfilled by imagination. viz when we hear two tones as a uniform (einheitlich) whole and hence relatively free of dissonance: “Fusion is that relation between two sense-perceived elements in which they form a whole rather than a mere sum”. viz how certain things relate to each other. In the case of a recollection. 43 See Entwürfe zur Umarbeitung der VI. Logischen Untersuchung (1913) Hua vol. 22/1: 241-2. posited in the mode of presenting. since it is the basis of temporal awareness. I recognize the state of affairs (Sachverhalt). PZB:280. The sense of an experience is grasped as the searchlight (Strahl) of a representation is directed towards the appearance (or core) here and now for. Husserl calls this core a dark presence (dunkle Präsenz) which requires a clear perception as fulfillment or. That is why perception is always accompanied by a halo (Hof) or horizon because this horizon is the meaning of a given appearance. See “Konsonanz und Dissonanz” (1898): 107 (my translation). what a certain object is called (what it means) or the relation between words and an object.On Autobiographical Memory 111 awareness of it comprises “along with the point of actually present sensation. The dark presence is the zero limit between an empty halo and a full core: it is not an originary presenting where nothing appears.

Recollection involves recognition and re-identification. Autobiographical memory also works in this way: when I suppose that ‘in my youth. It is not a judgment or doxic act but an understanding.. To recollect something involves being aware and mindful. The tower is a phantasy-formation fulfilling the retentive halo. I can understand something without making a judgment. in a partly normal and partly modified way. . secondary memory constructs the past by re-presenting earlier perceptions. his own past. Recollection and constructed continuity Recollection is autobiographical memory properly speaking (as we have seen. I can understand the statement: “a tower stands on the High Way” by positing a phantasy-tower on a street that I have before me in memory. as opposed to being forgetful or mindless. a princess. “the single numbers are ultimately posited as mathematical actualities”. A recollection represents the melody I heard. I was very beautiful and had many admirers’. Rather than seeing what is past. Similarly. the pain I felt or the glittering jewel I saw. Understanding occurs if the phantasy-construct corresponds to or concords with a corresponding thought-formation. An account of recollection deals with the question how past. similar to what Husserl calls ‘thinking of’ or modified judgment. retention is a form of perception rather than memory). and hence absent. for it is a process by which an individual not only retrieves and recreates events from the past but also recognizes them as belonging to the past and. there is no smooth or fading tie to the present. perceptions or ideas return into our consciousness. 2. This concordance grounds what Husserl calls a sympathetic or sympathizing belief-mode (sympathetischer. On the stepwise conception of memory. Retention is a form of perception but recollection is a form of representa44 Husserl. more specifically. Calling to mind last week’s dinner at the restaurant involves a presentification based on my recognizing that scene as past and re-viewing the events. He re-collects something he once had in his mind and has not attended to in the meantime. sympathisierender Glaubens-modus). my supposition posits those admirers as an autobiographical actuality which is a construct of recollection. recollection is secondary memory in which. Phantasie. in supposing an arbitrary mathematical theorem. 44 ‘Once upon a time’ posits something as having existed in the spatio-temporal world and thus we imagine or posit. : 380. Bildbewusstsein.112 Chapter Four obtains between a name and its object. a castle and other ingredients of a fairy-tale as ‘having existed’. unlike retention.

§ 1 of this work I present an argument for recollections as nested experiences with non-conceptual contents. for it implies a possibility of reflecting upon and hence reproducing an earlier appearance or series of appearances and bringing them to the fore (back to the present). But how does this claim fit with his assumption of a direct perceptual link between our past and our present? I argue below that Husserl’s position is not only noncontradictory. a recollection is accompanied by the awareness that these earlier perceptions have been present that is. it follows that what is present is not the same object. but first we must examine the root of the problem. the perception of the brightly illuminated theater or of my headache is representationally modified: I do not feel my past headache. and 2. This is precisely what Husserl claims. citing P. I now rebut this argument.3. a presentification of the perceived object or event also modifies the perception: in a recollection.. So. something appears as having been perceived. PZB. how does autobiographical memory link ‘then’ and ‘now’? In section 2. 2. the brightly illuminated theatre appears (or reappears).2.On Autobiographical Memory 113 tion. appendix XII: 128. According to Husserl’s essential law (Wesensgesetz) governing representations. but also plausible.1. The problem of continuity In part I. . Linke (1929)’s view of recollections as Schachtelerlebnisse. the reproduction of the perception of an external object is a representation of that object: Repro (Pe) = Re. for of course we can also remember things that did not happen and hence were not actually present.F. Likewise. I shall propose a Husserlian reply. chapter 3. but it is not now present. Thus a recollection is not just a recalling of an earlier perception but has the characters of reproduction and of pastness. 45 We may assume that recollection acts according to this law: as a reproduction which represents a perceived object or event. at least to our mind. then that thing appears as having been present. In addition. On this line of reasoning. And a representation presents something absent of which we have no sensory perception: we have sensory perceptions of present things which we do not need to presentify or represent. To put it differently. but I can represent it by positing (reproducing) it in recollection as a pain that I have felt. Linke considers nesting (Schachtelung) as a criterion for distinguishing between intentional and non-intentional experience – the former 45 See Husserl. So if we reproduce an earlier perception of something. § 27: 58 and PZB. namely continuity.

an earlier experience is embedded or nested in the later experience. This claim entails that our continuous representational experience consists of nested layers. a decade before Linke wrote his main text. See on this John Bell (2000) “Hermann Weyl on intuition and the continuum”. ca/~jbell/Hermann%2520Weyl. This objection was raised by the German mathematician Hermann Weyl (1918).und hinabgleiten) into the receding (absinkende) past”. The differences between their theories lie in their implications for perceived temporal continuity. On Linke’s account. viz the experienced continuous flow of phenomenal time. § 6 on the intuitive and the mathematical continuum: 65-74. such as the concept of real number. a recollection modifies the original perception. “precisely what eludes us is the nature of the continuity. if its elements can be constituents of other experiential states. Recollections are representations and thus intentional: they grasp a previous experience as the object of our representation. He criticizes the view of continuity as a flow consisting of (and dissolving into) points for. the English translation by S. New York: 92. The heterogenous nature of perception and recollection. according to him. Weyl gives the following example of why we cannot adequately bridge the discrepancy between phenomenal time and the concept of real number (and. that which lets the continually enduring present continually slip away (beständig hinüber. Cf. phenomenal time is a genuine primitive which we can determine approximately but not exactly. space or motion and the “discrete” exact concepts of mathematics. is problematic for explaining our temporal experience as continuous. however.114 Chapter Four are representations and the latter are perceptions. for example. 46 46 Hermann Weyl (1918) Das Kontinuum. Weyl’s objection is underwritten by the assumptions that phenomenal time is the most fundamental continuum and that there is an irradicable difference between intuitively given continua such as our experience of time. my translation. the flowing from point to point. at the core of which is a non-conceptual representational content. http//publish. argues that in a recollection we grasp both the object and the act that originally intended or perceived it. a perception is embedded in my recollection whereas on Husserl’s account. Dover Publications. Bole (1987). Both authors consider recollection as representational in regard to the question of composition: a recollection is representational if it is compositionally structured. For if recollection is defined as a nested experience. allowing us to infer. by contrast.pdf.uwo. then this definition does not account for the intuitive continuum. a conceptual description) of temporal dura- . respectively. Pollard & T. that a certain experience a at t1 is similar to a second experience b at t2. Husserl. that is. According to Linke.

tion and why it is questionable to dissolve a period into temporal points. we posit a rigidly punctual ‘Now’ (streng punktuelles ‘Jetzt’). But the ‘earlier now’ is not embedded in the ‘actual now’ – the temporal moment of my past experience of sitting in a university hall is not contained in the present moment of my facing a computer screen. referring to Husserl’s Ideen 1 §§ 81. als das Frühere zu setzen.” 47 Weyl points out the compositional and re-presentational nature of secondary memory which intends its object as occupying a position relative to the actual now. this correlation should be grounded in temporal intuition but the latter cannot provide evidence either way and that the experienced temporal flow cannot be represented as a continuum of individual points. N. but rather as the content of a (cogent) recollection: then it has become something past. then the domain of rational numbers to which l belongs if and only if there is a time point L earlier than P such that OL = l. but as a complex and uniform conscious experience of an actual now which. If we take the time span OE as a unit. . The content of my conscious experience persists not because it is ‘nested’ but because it both perdures and changes. ch. it is to be posited against what is now present. Weyl writes: “What has slipped away can re-emerge – certainly not as an experience that I have anew. Weyl points out that in order to be valid. Weyl cites both Husserl and Linke in a footnote “über das Zeitproblem” ( :70). my translation.On Autobiographical Memory 115 Weyl conceives recollection similarly to Husserl – not as a nested experience. ist es gegenüber dem. wohl aber als Inhalt einer (triftigen) Erinnerung: dann ward es das Vergangene. even if the following two conditions were satisfied: say I express my perceptual finding that during a certain period I saw a pencil lying there as follows: (1) “in every temporal point which falls within a certain time span OE” I saw a pencil lying there. as that which occurred earlier. § 6:67-68.B. das ich von neuem habe. In this sense. In the objective picture I form of life’s flow. with its temporal position. for the ‘earlier now’ is posited with regard to the coordinate-point of my actual temporal location. § 6: 70. 47 Weyl (1918) “Das Entschwundene kann auftauchen – zwar nicht als ein Erlebnis. recollection is a construction we can explain by using a Weylian conception of the continuum. Linke (1929) is even more explicit on recollection as a nested representation.6). das ich mir mache.81 and Linke’s phänomenale Sphäre und das reale Bewusstsein” (1912. in dem objektiven Bild des Lebensablaufs. was jetzt da ist. so that we can effectively correlate descriptive concepts with phenomenal temporal experience: in order to exhibit temporal points (such as ‘earlier now’). (2) If P is a temporal point. slips away (viz Husserl’s retention or primary memory which is a form of perception).” Das Kontinuum.OE. then each temporal point P is correlated with a definite real number.

Weyl’s phenomenological stance is undeniable and the notion of the ‘I’ (of an aware subject) as a coordinate system develops Husserlian points whilst anticipating Bühler’s (not to mention Merleau-Ponty’s) investigations on deixis and the bodily coordinate system of ‘I’. §6: 72. For continuity between ‘then’ and ‘now’ is not only a result of autobiographical accounts. and in terms of a coordinate system Weyl calls “the inevitable residue of the eradication of the ego” (das unvermeidliche Residium der Ich-Vernichtung) in the geometrico-physical world. it is a limit or temporal point introduced into the (intuitively given) continuum of my temporal experience. Whilst this account may not solve all the problems involved in describing autobiographical memory. And the relation ‘earlier than’ is determined on the collection of such temporal points. for our purpose his view is instrumental in explaining autobiographical memory as a constructed continuum in terms of a coordinate system with nonindependent temporal points. as well as the unfortunate absence of specific textual evidence. never exactly. See on this J. narrow bench in a university hall to sitting in a stroller in the park. because that would presuppose it to be a unit. However that may be. 48 . consciousness and its contents are not only incompatible with exact mathematical representation but resist the latter. Bell’s (2000) appendix on Weyl’s Analogy between Egos and Coordinate Systems in “Hermann Weyl on intuition and the continuum”. that is. it is the backbone of autobiographical memory. it provides a tentative solution to the ‘temporal gap’ problem – if we accept the claim that ‘then’ is a point of transition exhibited in the continuum of conWeyl (1918). from sitting on an old. from my ‘actual now’ facing the crisp images displayed on my monitor to my ‘earlier nows’. Bell points out Weyl’s intended criticism of Husserl. In this appendix. as smears or smudges with blurred contours and if and only if we consider temporal points as fixed within a coordinate system without giving their exact determination. ‘here’ and ‘now’. Single points in a true continuum “cannot be exhibited” because they are not genuine individuals and cannot be defined by their properties. so it cannot be embedded. We can appropriately account for temporal continuity in recollection if and only if we consider temporal points as non-independent points of transition. They can be determined approximately. it at least provides a plausible explanation of how our past and present are linked. as a concordant (or congruence) relation of temporal intervals. If my hypothesis is correct. The linear time-structure of autobiographical narratives (regardless of the ‘gaps’) is a result of an intuitively given continuum which is constructed in our personal coordinate system. But this temporal point is a nonindependent point of transition.116 Chapter Four rather. 48 In other words.

as I show in discussing trace theories in part I of this work. Both are represented by a rule – which has an access to a degree of generality that an image lacks.On Autobiographical Memory 117 scious experience and that ‘earlier than’ is a relation of temporal intervals relative to a posited ‘actual now’. indeed even in the individual. Autobiographical recollection does not deal with general principles and procedures but constructs particular objects. 50 A past object or event cannot be represented by an image. But neither do we have a memory of the toothache.” 49 How do we exhibit or represent past objects or events? We construct them by means of imagination which provides an ostensive access to a past object or event by presenting us with a construct or schema. recollection ‘considers the universal in the particular. For past objects or events. like mathematical cognition. by reproducing it. My hunch is that autobiographical memory is plastically specific rather than rigidly singular and personal: it has qualitative units which are not singular but situational: we recall the brightly illuminated theatre as a qualitative KrV. no more than a concept can be represented as an image. Such exhibition takes place in imagination. rather we remember a toothache and how it ruined our day. See KrV B180-181 on Kant’s famous (or infamous) schematism and the distinction between schema and image. yet nonetheless a priori […] without having had to borrow the pattern for it from any experience. At the same time. we turn towards it. B742-3. returning or ‘awakening’ the past object-like formation by exhibiting it. Hence. individual points and this view does not account for our experience of phenomenal duration or what we are aware of: a smeared ‘now’. except that it does not construct mathematical concepts but provides access to the past). exhibiting (or representing) a past event is a conceptual construction – if we accept the idea that recognition is cognition if and only if it proceeds by construction (analogous to Kant’s mathematical cognition. Underlying that presupposition is the view that recollection is constituted of. or decomposable into. 50 49 . In recalling it. so that the past object is once again intuitively given and stands before us in full dress. the ‘generality’ is not universal but specific and situational – we remember a certain Christmas rather than the Christmas 11 years ago. sinking away. This schema is not an image or mental picture but a rule which makes it possible for us to see again a scene of the past. we no longer need to presuppose a temporal gap between the time of an event’s occurrence and the time of its recollection which we then have trouble justifying. Why should recollection require an access to generality since our autobiographical memory is individual? Obviously we do not have a general memory of a toothache just as we do not have a general experience of a toothache.

53 A direct access. there are two types of long-term memorysystems: episodic and semantic memory. viz describable or re-collectable following a rule that picks out the invariance through changes of context or system of reference. it follows that this form of memory also tells us about the source of our past experience. J.118 Chapter Four unit and without all the details it consisted of. According to E. informing us about the past. Campbell (1994. provided the elements are related to each other by a rule applying a group concept (or a Kantian schema). I should thus be able to identify its source (when and where this experience was acquired) or the time and place when it occurred: rather than remembering the fact that the washing machine flooded the kitchen. what warranty or cognitive value can it possibly have? Does it not invalidate memory as a source of knowledge? These questions are straightforward enough but. that is. Tulving (1972). Episodic memory is distinct from semantic or factual memory precisely because episodic memory is an autobiographical memory with a record of past events and not a retention of general facts of knowledge: if I only have semantic memory. since a new cognition is produced. when and where an event occurred. 52 51 . the problem is that my access to the past. 2. without remembering that I have previously tasted this chocolate. 51 Imagination allows for variation of particular elements of objects or events under changes of context. or so I shall try to argue. I remember that the machine broke down two days ago and that I then called the mechanic who was supposed to repair it later that week. for whether memory yields knowledge depends on our way of finding out about a past event. The role of imagination and belief in recollection If autobiographical memory involves an awareness of our past. 236-239). The perception or attention involved in retrieving a past event has cognitive value.2. My claim about the role of imagination in recollection raises the obvious question of verifiability and validity: if my link to the past is constructed in imagination. cannot occur otherwise than by construction in imagination. I may know that black chocolate tastes bitter. in my recollection of this event. for example by seeing someone do something is necessary in order for my recollection to be a source See on this Cassirer (1944) o :cit. even if it involves perception or direct awareness. but as a specific situation which can be moulded and re-moulded by recollection because the elements composing it are related as a group. 53 Cf. 52 When I recall a past experience.

vol. because if autobiographical memory is a construction it also involves imagination and even distortion. Without the perceptual-link-claim. In my reproductive recollection. :248. Memory and phantasy are interrelated: I can become lost in memory as I linger in the beloved rooms of my childhood home which hovers before me. how can I assert that what I am now perceiving is something I perceived in an earlier now? How can I claim “that what is past was present? 55 An obvious answer is that I must believe it was present. I still have to account for the temporal discontinuity between past and present and the possibility of a screen memory when I access a just-past experience: suppose what I recall is not the past episode in question but a fragment of an episode concealing an earlier event. For what it’s worth. even if I recall this past episode. I think Van Gelder wrongly claims that Husserl’s account can be recuperated by sacrificing his claim that there is a direct perceptual link between our past and our present. If that is so. 54 If this is so. Belief is a necessary feature of memory: I trust my memory as a source of information about my past if I am certain that my recollection 54 55 Cf. Husserl’s contribution to cognitive science is that we can intend the past (and the future) without perceiving them. In this case. the discussions by T. J. although there are data to the contrary (such as photographs or eye witnesses). Husserl’s account is saved by trivialization. Furthermore. if there is a direct link between my past experience and present memory. then this link is not continuous from past to present and at best guarantees that the relevant memory can be gained or collected. I modify the memory – my reproduction is a modification.On Autobiographical Memory 119 of knowledge (and not indirect access by testimony or inference). cf. XI. . Van Gelder and F. On Van Gelder’s view. But how reliable is our recollection? How can I be certain that my memory of that brightly illuminated theatre or of a famous painting such as Botticelli’s allegory of spring is not a phantasy which I imagine without actually having seen it – even though I may believe that I have seen it? Or vice versa: I may be certain that I have not seen Botticelli’s painting because I do not recall having seen it or having been to the Uffizi. Husserl’s theory loses its momentum – for if we extract perception from the link between past and present we also lose the justification of that link by perceptual salience (conceived as an affective force). Cf. since I can also remember things that did not happen. Varela (1999) in Naturalizing Phenomenology: 245-318. Collected Works. also text no 10. 3456. Husserl. At the very least. In PZB he famously queries whether ‘perceived past’ is not akin to the paradoxical ‘wooden iron’ (hölzernes Eisen) :415. The answer is that I cannot be certain either way. appendix XVII. the earlier episode has become inaccessible – a past without a present – whereas a later past imposes itself onto the present scene. Dokic (2001: 228).

whilst fiction has no claims to truth. the question is not so much whether truth really matters in autobiographies but to what extent we can justifiably accuse someone of lying when he tells us about our past. And why should our recollections be faithful reproductions of past events? The correspondence between past events and our recollections is not a case of veritas est adaequatio rei et intellectus.g. The question is not only: ‘who wouldn’t embellish the facts when trying to publish ?’ – and subsequently face a moral jury of disgruntled readers and furious fellow-writers who claim that you have discredited their trade – but rather: ‘how truthful can you possibly be in recollecting your past?’ One problem is that publishers consider memoirs as nonfiction and. For there is a shift in my narrative perspective: my recollection of my attending the theatre combines a first. rather they recall what the story demands. But how can such a re-presentation or reproduction be directly linked to perception? Husserl argues for a direct perceptual link between present memory and the past by claiming that recollections are modifications of perceptual acts on one hand and by rejecting the image theory – the view that our memories are pictorial representations or copies of past events: we do not perceive an image or copy of what is past but the past object itself. viz they give a coherent account which warrants the re-presentation of their past. nor do recollectors try to come to know the truth when remembering. Rather. But recalling something is distinct from knowing that something is true and even my certainty that I am remembering an event of my past does not guarantee the truth of my recollection. viz constructing a continuous sequence of events to produce a purposive unity of action.and a third-person perspective: I 56 James Frey (2003) A million little pieces. my memory image is a construction or compilation of a number of past perceptions edited into a coherent sequence or episode. Yet both genres are telling stories. Apart from the fact that the resulting controversy made his memoir an even bigger best-seller. . Consider James Frey’s controversial memoir A Million Little Pieces (2003). facts to which they correspond). in a different intentional mode. but they do not have truth-makers (e. nonfiction does.120 Chapter Four represents my earlier perception of an event. autobiographical recollections are truth-committed in that they disclose grounds for beliefs and actions. However that may be. My recollection of the brightly illuminated theatre I attended last night is not an analogous image and remembering is not pictorial imaging. for our past episodes are constructs under present descriptions or recollections which modify our past perceptions as well our self-presentation by either improving or devaluing our past self (or selves). 56 His life-story became a best-seller and then he was accused of making up key parts.

“I see again my old schoolroom in Vyra. my perception is in the mode of belief. […] A sense of security. Hence I am also aware that this memory appearance is “at bottom a different object” and not the theatre itself. but its sense has a ‘different mode of being’ – that of an illusion and hence of a different belief. Collected Works. from my present position I can consider that what I saw yesterday as a human being is for me today a wax figure. designed to trick the perceiver. :184. Hua XI. the open window. for I grasp the temporal context or location (‘when’ and ‘where’) of the remembered event as well as the event itself as an enduring content. XI. the blue roses of the wall-paper. of well-being. In recalling the brightly illuminated theatre I attended. My present belief only re-presents my past belief. of summer 57 58 Hua X. This is the condition sine qua non of autobiographical memory: my explicit memory of a past event is at the same time an implicit memory of my earlier act of perceiving the object. The brightly illuminated theatre appears again in my presentification. :672. 351-354.On Autobiographical Memory 121 ‘see again’ the theatre (which is not now present) and I also reproduce my earlier act of perception. In the first case. in the ‘as if’ or ‘as it were’: such autobiographical accounts are usually in the subjunctive mood: Consider the following passage from Nabokov’s “act of vividly recalling a patch of the past”. . viz the episode appears ‘as if’ I were perceiving it and I have what Husserl calls a double focus: either from the reproductive position of the ‘as it were’ or looking back from my present position in the 59 ‘now’. we can still ‘see’ the figure now as the human being. now as the wax figure. Once we have recognized our error. Consider Husserl’s example of a perceptual illusion: in a museum he sees a young woman holding a catalogue and after a while he recognizes that it was a figure made of wood and wax. along with my awareness of its past-ness. In my present memory I believe that what I remember actually existed in the past and this memorial belief is derived from a past perception which in turn appears in the mode of belief. 57 This is how my memory can both remain in touch with an actual past and modify it in reproducing it. Likewise. text no. 59 Husserl. since the very fact that I am aware of having experienced this event before now shows that I am situating my memory as past in relation to my actual now.19. 58 And my recognition of the figure as a mechanical mannequin also marks a temporal discontinuity: my present perspective is different from my past perspective. for it is posited by my belief. vol. I live in the past in memory.

I V. in some cases. Cf. Thus. The workings of recollection: salience. The subjunctive mood expresses a possibility (or. that is. 2. viz a perception of a just-now which sinks or slips away into the past and a form of presentification when I retrieve or reproduce the episode I previously perceived. it conditions its recovery. an impossibility). nothing will ever change.” 60 “Everything is as it should be”. are expressed in the indicative mood: “I did not go to Harvard. That robust reality makes a ghost of the present. then autobiographical memory is a modified perception which does not present but re-present my earlier experience by positing it as an episode of my personal past. Nabokov (1947). The remembered object or event is cast as a reproduction of an original perception which I take cognizance of in the mode of belief: I posit it by recognizing it as something intimately familiar. on the other hand. In a similar manner. nor did I become a great lawyer”. The indicative mood corresponds to the second position: looking back from my present position in the ‘now’: at t2 I am aware that I did (or failed to do) y at t1.122 Chapter Four warmth pervades my memory. Husserl distinguishes between phantasy and secondary memory: pure phantasy does not have the character of ‘seeing again’ which is essential to recollection. Reminiscences containing expressions such as: “I could” or “I should have been” are hypothetical assumptions or implications of the form: ‘suppose that if p. in my personal coordinate system fixed by the indexicals I. then q’. as if to comment on the autobiographical genre. If autobiographical memory is complex.3. precisely because the “robust reality” of memory “makes a ghost of the present”. attention and recognition If there is a perceived past. there is a temporal perception which directly links our present memory and our past perception. This direct link is part of our constructed temporal continuum or narrative form and we can thus characterize autobiographical memory as a component of our (present) experience. memory does not preserve the past. here and now. nobody will ever die. 60 . Note that Nabokov entitles his work an autobiography revisited. what a great lawyer I should have become”. regardless of whether our conjecture is of the future or the past : “suppose that I had gone to Harvard. […] Everything is as it should be. for I posit something as a possibility and hence the ‘as if’ in phantasy is not the same as that of memory where I posit the object as past. Recollections. 75-77. on this Eakin (2000): 292-293.

attention is a mental disposition (and hence dependent on a mental act) which accompanies and directs our recollection: we are turned to the brightly illuminated theatre we have seen. I have 61 See Calabi (2005: 253-269). § 19. mainly because here emotions are reduced to neurophysiological or biochemical processes. 19/2. 62 See Jaak Panksepp (1995): “Emotion as a Natural Kind Within the Brain”: 13755. a segment which emerges as salient that is. I (was) there. my translation (Findlay translates ‘prägnant’ as ‘pregnant’ which is literally correct but misses the connotation of Prägnanz). attention motivates my construction of the continuity called autobiography because perceptual saliences provide reasons why I should construct this continuity. I adhere to a cognitive account of emotions according to which pain and fear are feelings distinct from emotions such as joy.On Autobiographical Memory 123 can perceive the past by focusing on my experience from my present perspective. Unlike them. “we aim at it. following the James-Lange tradition. 63 See Ronald de Sousa (1987). She defines saliences as grounds for action and attention as sensitivity to reasons. This perceptual experience of the past is possible because attention is an affective state which zeroes in on an event.” 64 Attention can modify our recollection because it enables us to conceive various possibilities. 64 Husserl. in the searchlight of my perception. Trauma or the relation between emotional stress and past experience which is either blocked or recalled. 61 I will briefly sketch an account of attention in order to cut a path across the thorny area generated by cognitive research into the relation between memory and emotion with a bottom-top method. . with an affective force. viz preference. it has an emotional aspect. In addition. The Rationality of Emotion. then and I remember x as having-perceived-x: I recall the train as having seen it rushing into the station last week. introducing limits into the continuum of real time: attention delimits or cuts out a segment from this intuitive continuum. affects or ‘feelings’ are assimilated to emotions. pride. appropriate (prägnant) sense. Hua vol. 62 On this experimental and cognitivist view. LU5. the temporal foreground or present episode derives its meaning from its context in my past. love or hate which are a separate category of mental capacities in that they have a cognitive base and are directed at intentional objects. On the other hand. we mean it in the specific. Although attention is distinct from intention. the past becomes the foreground of my perceptual experience as I ‘see again’ the scene of my past. 63 Attention is an affective state. but it is not an emotion or an act but an act-quality which modifies an act. Roughly speaking. is an important focus of this research but there is little a philosopher can add to it. On one hand.

My hunch is that what orients attention and motivates preference is not an emotion. LU5. 19/2. section 1. as a source of joy. Rather. without Iago’s insinuations. rather. it does not draw my attention or cause this salience. not as a sensory stimulus but as a detectable reason. two objections immediately arise: first. what directs our thought may also be an emotion: if I now hate a person I have loved. § 19.124 Chapter Four shown this in ch. Still. viz by my assigning it a special position in my autobiographical memory. However. assigning them a weight in our experience that they would not have otherwise had. the recollection of my grandfather’s smile has an emotional value which is disclosed by my preference. For example. I focus on them by attending to different configurations of them and what redirects my attention to a different set of their attributes is my present emotion of hate. I think the motivating force behind Othello’s jealousy is his sensitivity to Iago’s reasoning. objects or situations. his jealousy pervades his judgment and compels him to infer Desdemona’s guilt on the basis of evidence which. although emotions can be controlled by directing our thought. Consider how Iago incites Othello’s jealousy: he directs Othello’s attention to Desdemona’s friendship with Cassio and the lost handkerchief by suggesting which conclusions might be inferred without specifying them himself. past objects such as an old photograph or a family jewel can carry an emotional value for us as a material link between our present and past and this value is disclosed by our preferring these objects to others. § 2 by analyzing figure/ground segregation as an attentional modification. in that they put into relief certain features of events. the emotion is an effect of the attention-magnet that draws attention from other things to this one. viz to the persuasive force of the latter’s argu65 See Husserl. where he defines active attention as interest. Perhaps it is even the source of emotional value. 65 This selective function of attention is interest or preferring and preferring is a (sometimes non-cognitive) emotion revealing the emotional value of a recollected object. Second. Although emotion colors and enhances the salience of a past object or event. because it is selective. one could argue that emotions are a source of salience and hence an attention-magnet. Hua vol. Similarly.3. attention has a preparatory function: it is a way of being occupied with an object or event which enables us to prepare for certain experiences and act appropriately. attention enables us to segregate perceived or recollected objects and events. Attention is an emphatic function which accompanies mental acts and. In addition. Once Othello’s attention focuses on the lost handkerchief. sadness or anger. . the salience is produced by an attention-magnet which is embedded in the recollected situation. he would not have thought about.

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ment. This persuasive force characterizes informal deductive arguments or enthymemes in which we are persuaded to fill in the blanks ourselves, that is, to infer a conclusion from the premisses on the strength of our conviction that it is true. So the source or ground of salience is not the emotion itself but rather my sensitivity to the reasons for experiencing the emotion, viz attention. 66 If attention is defined as sensitivity or responsiveness to reasons, should it not be cognitive or representational? Not necessarily: attention is a mood or inflection of my recollection which modifies or changes the form of my earlier perception, but it depends on the representation it modifies, so it is not a representation itself. As a mood, attention is an attitude of the mind towards a representational content, an attitude which is determined by the perceived situation and its relation to that situation rather than by the perceiver’s intention. On Husserl’s view, attention has an active and a passive mode: (aufmerken) or paying attention to and noticing (bemerken), respectively. 67 The passive mode of attention is not yet a cognitive state, rather it is an experiential state of being affected by something (analogous to retention as primary memory) and the active mode of attention is a cognitive state in which I aim at or focus on something (analogous to recollection as secondary memory). It seems that attention requires a stepwise (or at least a two-step) theory, just as autobiographical memory does An example of the passive mode is this: if my attention is caught by the ticking of a watch, my recollection is modified by the ticking without my necessarily being aware of its context: I can notice the ticking of a clock without even identifying (or cognizing) it, yet the ticking can act as an attention-magnet. Let’s say I recall my irritation when sitting in a dentist’s silent waiting room whilst running late for another appointment and I am counting the minutes ticking away. In this recollected situation, the ticking is salient, viz my attention is drawn to the clock’s rhythmic pulsation marking the passing moments and my increasing lateness – and my sensitivity to the consequences of the ticking, as well as to the reason for having to hear it in the first place, grounds my equally increasing irritation. Or, to put it another way, my response to the reason for my lateness is revealed by the ticking which motivates my irritation. The active mode of attention, also called interest, is on a par with recognition: I recognize my past irritation if my attention is in the active
This is Calabi’s (2005) view. I agree with her and I think it also works for recollection. 67 See my discussion of attentional rhythmics in ch. 3 section 1.2 and Husserl: Wahrnehmung und Aufmerksamkeit, Hua, vol. 38: 283-93.
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mode, viz directed to the ticking. As I discussed above, recognition is a form of recollection involving working and semantic memories, but it is distinct from autobiographical or episodic recollection. For recognition is knowledge by acquaintance and hence it is characterized by a feeling of familiarity when we re-experience a past event or when something perceived at an earlier time is again encountered. We may recognize or discriminate a familiar face without being able to put a name to it but (episodic) recollection is required for renewing or reproducing the whole configuration of face-name-relevance-to-me. My recognition discriminates or constructs the ticking as a salience or relevant reason if my attention has been motivated or activated to turn to it on the grounds of having detected it (in the passive mode) as affectively prominent or salient (merklich). In recollection, I turn towards the dormant retentional affection which acts as an attention-magnet. I am re-collecting (or awakening) the past event or object-like formation which has a relief of salience (Merklichkeitsrelief). This relief is segregated (or a configuration emerges) in the attentional pulse of passive detectibility (Bemerksamkeit) and active attention (Aufmerksamkeit). 68 Salience is detected by passive attention and constructed by active attention in recollection. A dormant retentional affection is a recollection without relief and lacking in clarity, whereas an affective awakening means that the recollection has a relief and a higher degree of clarity. The zero degree of affective force is the limes or boundary of retentional past, the limit between liminal and subliminal memory. A recollection renews or reproduces a past event or object when the latter’s relevance to my actual situation is recognized. On one hand we have a sensitivity to reason and on the other, we have a response to reason which determines our course of action. Interest is a response to reason, for to be interested in something is to be actively involved in something I have a proprietary claim to or where something is at stake for me. In a recollection, these two aspects of attention are tied together as an affective force which produces recognition. Attention as salience discriminated and constructed, is a cognitive and representational state. Recollection and recognition are thus not merely linked, but the latter depends on the former. In addition, recollection is linked to action, for the way in which we remember and cognize past events determines how we act in the present. If that is so, recollection is a sufficient condition for explaining the relation between perceiver and agent, whereas interest or active attention is a sufficient and necessary condition for explaining this relation. Since perception is not merely something that happens to us but
68

See Husserl, Analysen zur passiven Synthesis, Hua, vol. 11, § 35: 166-7.

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something we do (following the late Francisco Varela and Alva Noë), an ‘enactive’ experience, our perception depends, as Noë puts it, on how we stand in relation to how things are and keeping track of what we do, which in turn affects what we experience. 69 Keeping track of what we do (and how what we do affects our experience) involves primary memory or retention. How we keep track of what we do involves attention and secondary memory or recollection. Above, I showed that recollection produces recognition by integrating passive and active attention and that the latter qua interest is a response to reason which determines our action. I advance what I consider to be a plausible explanation of the mechanism of recollection, conceived in terms of Aristotle’s theory of drama and mimesis. Roughly speaking, we understand present connections between characters and events once we discover what happened to them in the past. This is how recollection can determine our course of action – and this is also one of Aristotle’s conditions for a successful tragedy. In drama, recognition is a change from ignorance to knowledge and, not surprisingly, Aristotle designates recognition depending on memory as one of the aspects of tragedy. 70 Again, I consider the phenomenology of recollection rather than empirical questions concerning neural activity or what some cognitive scientists call the ‘subpersonal functional architecture’. 71 The structure (or architecture) of recollection is hierarchical, as I hope to have shown : from subliminal to supraliminal (or subpersonal to personal) levels. However, since to date we have no plausible scientific evidence that the brain produces memories and other mental states, explanations based on synapses and biochemical processes are no less hypothetical accounts for the working order of recollection than the one I propose. 72 This ‘mechanism’ of recollection is conceivable in terms of Aristotle’s theory of drama as mimesis of an action. On this view, “the objects an imiSee Alva Noë (2004) Action in Perception; cf. Calabi (2005) op.cit. See Aristotle’s Poetics on αναγνώριση depending on memory: “from a man’s consciousness being awakened by something seen. Thus, in the Cyprioe of Dicaeogenes, the sight of the picture makes the hero burst into tears; and in the Tale of Alcinous, hearing the harper Odysseus is reminded of the past and weeps” ch. 16, 1454b.36-1455a.1. I follow Butcher’s and Halliwell’s respective use of ‘recognition’ instead of Bywater’s ‘discovery’. Nichev uses познаване and Gudemann uses Erkennung – both terms are closer to ‘recognition’ than to ‘discovery’. 71 See Susan Hurley (2006) “Active perception and perceiving action”: 205-259. 72 Even neurobiologists such as Francis Crick and Christof Koch admit that there is no plausible scientific explanation for relating activities of the brain and (sub)personal experience; see “A framework for consciousness”: 119-26.
70 69

77 In this non-analogous sense a poet.128 Chapter Four tator represents are actions”. 73 74 Aristotle. 75 A possible reality is thus represented according to the temporal structure of phenomenal reality. ch. As a consequence of their disclosure (Enthüllung).7. a dramatic action is not given all at once but relies on plot-structure. or things as they ought to be”. 74 For in order to give an appropriate representation of experience. things as they are said or seem to be.25.26-36.1450b. Bywater (1965) uses ‘plot’ and Halliwell (1987) uses ‘plotstructure’ which seems closest to contemporary usage.1460b 8-11. but this continuity consists of discrete events: the plot-structure as a mimesis of action is organized in a discrete three-part structure of beginning. . ch. 126. Buckley (1907) also uses ‘fable’. 76 The plot structure prompts the observer’s recognition or discovery of the reasons underlying that action and recognition enabled through recollection is one of the ways for constructing saliences or reasons for actions. On Ingarden’s view. If constructed. we must describe the experienced world or how we keep track of how things are. for example. Poetics. 76 Aristotle uses ‘muthos’ which Nichev translates as ‘фабула’. 78 The same can be said for autobiographical recollection. Poetics. 78 Aristotle. past events that are recollected may ‘now’ disclose motives for conduct or action that ‘then’ were still hidden. Under a mimetic representation (or description) an action appears continuous. ch. Plot-structure or fable is distinct from plot-action or the subject (what a literary work is about): plot-structure is the designed pattern of action.2. 77 Roman Ingarden (1968) Vom Erkennen des literarischen Kunstwerks:123. the action changes its essential character and appears in a different light. middle and end. 75 See Aristotle. 73 Aristotelian mimesis is neither formal (presupposing a correspondence between a mimetic subject and a model) nor behavioural imitation or emulation but make-belief using counterfeit representation or hypotyposis where what is represented or ‘made visible’ is in a different format from what is ‘given’ to our senses but none the less accessible. viz a coherent organization of events enabling an observer to discriminate the action.1448a See Paul Woodruff (1992) “Aristotle on Mimesis”: 73-95. Recollections are not snapshots that are laid out in detail for us to see all at once. playwright or screenwriter is an imagemaker who ‘produces a mimesis of one of three things: reality past or present. the story or configuration of events representing an action. What we held to be a defense against a foreign attack is revealed as a masked attack or what then appeared to us as a victory is now seen as an escape from danger. Similarly. these saliences produce anagnorisis or a transition from ignorance to knowledge. Poetics.

was ich erkenne. § 221. In addition. Grössenlehre. vol. 82 ML. First. Bolzano uses this relation as a kind of proof for explaining why something is the case or how it is grounded. Philosophical Investigations. 81 From an epistemological point of view. what justifies the shame is the whole history of the incident.On Autobiographical Memory 129 2. “Bolzano’s theory of ground and consequence” (2002: 1-25). WLIII. see Kasabova (2002: 21-33) and Armin Tatzel. § 162. there must be a reason (Grund) why I cognize it. (cf. This is a case of prima facie justification. For an account of Bolzano’s ground-consequence relation and his notion of justification. In order to account for the relation denoted by the conjunction ‘because’. 81 ML. Aetiologie. also WLII. As Wittgenstein puts it. A. Bolzano determines the concept of grounding (Abfolge) as a “concept of an ordering of truths which allows us to derive from the smallest number of simple premisses the largest possible number of the remaining truths as conclusions” WLII. whenever I cognize something. § 13. 80 For the latter discloses the motives of the former: the history of the incident explains why a feeling of shame is the case. For an account of the grounding relation and anaphoric pointing in recollection. But on Bolzano’s view. it yields an epistemological account of how saliences are constructed in recollection or the ‘because’ relation between past reasons and present action. see Kasabova (2008): 331-350. now I feel ashamed because of a cutting remark I made earlier. I argue that the grounding relation is the semantic base of autobiographical memory. I now return to Bolzano and the grounding relation (Abfolge) which holds between true propositions that are compatible as ground and consequence. 80 Ludwig Wittgenstein. warum ich es erkenne”. . Second. 82 We understand a fact on grounds of its explanation: knowing that p on the grounds of q where q explains why p is the case. the grounding relation is the ordering relation between tensed expressions such as: “it is the case that” or “it was the case that”. § 644. what is the explanatory force of the ‘because’? For instance. My shame is explained by my recollection of my past behaviour. § 13 (1833-1841) in BBGA.7. § 4) “Von allem.note. knowing that p on the grounds of q or recognizing that q 79 Thanks to Lilia Gurova and Nikolai Obreshkov for prompting me to expound the semantic condition of autobiographical memory. Back to Bolzano or why autobiographical memory has a semantic base 79 If recollections disclose motives for conduct and actions and serve for constructing saliences or reasons for actions.4. Bolzano distinguishes objective grounding from epistemic and causal grounds. § 198. II. § 314. the grounding relation is distinct from deducibility (Ableitbarkeit) or logical consequence. WLII. muss ein Grund vorhanden sein.

when we construct saliences or recognize reasons for actions. Such a subjective ground is what we obtain in a recollection enabling recognition. for then the grounding relation does not ob84 83 . as in: p is true on the grounds of q and q explains why p is the case. 83 Consider the statement: ‘he is in prison because he committed a crime’: p ‘he is in prison’ is grounded or explained by q ‘he committed a crime’. as premises. In other words. WLII. the consecutive clause expresses the consequences of the events related in the main clause and the link between them is not epistemological but semantic. 84 Hence. My recollection is a consequence of my previous perception of the flower-seller and can be derived from the statement: ‘she was at the station’ which explains the recollective statement. This irreflexive semantic link is quite simply the order of antecedent and consequent and I argue that this link is what autobiographical memory is based on.130 Chapter Four implies recognizing that p could be just what he calls a subjective grounding or epistemic reason (Erkenntnisgrund). are confirmations (Gewissmachungen) which produce a cognition or which follow from a cognition as consequences. Bolzano’s grounding relation obtains in formal and material implications or consecutive clauses (Consecutivsatz) and the latter concern us. Now consider a recollective statement: ‘I remember the flower-seller because she was at the station last week (where I saw her)’ expresses the material ground-consequence relation (or implication) as follows: ‘I remember the flower-seller’ is grounded by ‘because she was at the station last week’. 85 Not surprisingly. The reason I remember the flower-seller is because she was there. My belief that p because q is subjectively grounded if it is based on testimony or an observation statement rather than a proof showing that p is a consequence of q or depends on q. The question is. My recollective statement is at least partly grounded by a statement expressing the existence of the flowerseller. § 168. Subjective grounds. Hence in a confirmation we obtain an epistemic reason (Erkenntnisgrund) or the certainty that p. 85 WLII. independently of epistemic reasons or causality. Bolzano notes that it is important not to invert the order of antecedent and consequent in proofs. so q justifies p. The link is irreflexive in the sense that no ground (or consequence) can be the complete ground (or consequence) of itself. § 204. for the grounding relation to hold. whether we also obtain an objective ground (Begründung) and a ‘because’ relation which holds independently of our cognition. it is important not to invert the order of antecedent and consequent. q explains why p is the case and p is true on the grounds of q.

bk Θ 10: 1051 b 6-9. diese aber die Folge jener sind. dated 1816-1840. which has the same distance ab from both a and b. so that the causal proposition: “x causes y” actually expresses the ground-consequence relation: “the truth that x exists is related to the truth that y exists as a (partial) ground (Theilgrund) is related to its (partial) consequence (Theilfolge)”. kraft dessen einige Wahrheiten der Grund von anderen. § 213. .On Autobiographical Memory 131 Bolzano distinguishes the grounding relation from epistemic reasons on one hand and from causality on the other.” 87 Aristotle. The death of a patient suffering from tuberculosis is a consequence of the illness. Cf. WLIV. whereas grounds and consequences are propositions denoting singular terms and a ground-consequence relation holds between propositions independently of whether the objects of the proposition actually exist or not. The objective ground is this: two circles cut each other because for every two points a and b there must be a third. AntiEuklid (manuscript. In addition. then the converse relation might quite easily occur”. If p is the nearest ground of q and q is the nearest ground of a third proposition r. § 525.82. c. Metaphysics. For example. For example. § § 168. Bolzano explains causality in terms of the grounding relation. 86 WLII. p. we fail to state the correct ground of the truth to be demonstrated. 88 Intransitivity is important for the ordering of ante and post in a ground- tain. Causal propositions are determined by a ground-consequence relation between other propositions. published 1967: 210-211). to recur to an Aristotelian example: my statement ‘you are pale’ is (partly) grounded by your paleness. 86 Or. Bolzano’s example.: “[…] die Lehre von den objektiven Zusammenhängen zwischen den Wahrheiten (. because causes and effects are real objects. Ground and consequence cannot be special kinds of cause and effect. but it is not a consequence of the cold drink which may have brought about the illness.) einem Verhältnisse. the truth that in an equilateral triangle all angles are equal is a consequence of the truth that an isosceles triangle has two equal angles. If the order of the propositions in the demonstration is inverted. ML § 13.. 201 . so that ca = cb = ab. but that is only the subjective ground. We know that an equilateral triangle is possible by confirming this on grounds of the truth that two circles cut each other. see also Bolzanos Wissenschaftslehre in einer Selbstanzeige. 87 Bolzano refers to partial grounds and partial consequences because the grounding relation is intransitive with regard to the nearest grounds. 88 WLII. the truth that an equilateral triangle is possible contains the objective ground of the truth that two circles cut each other. woraus dann auch das wichtige Verhältnis zwischen Ursache und Wirkung hervorgehe und auf eine neue Art erklärt wird. then p is only a partial or auxiliary ground of r.. “but if one only pays attention to the mere knowing.

The recollection is partly grounded by the trace (its auxiliary ground). If we could not refer back to previous positions in time. the so-called memory for facts. Conscious recollection is a mental state which tells us about what is inactual or occurred in the past. just as perceptions tell us about what is actual or happening now and imagination tells us about what is possible or could occur. This ordering principle also regulates positioning in time by means of tensed expressions. the zero-point ‘now’ is a . as I showed in chapter 1. as the Irish would say. The relation between present results of past events and the past events themselves is expressed by a perfect which tends to become a preterit or aorist. just as imagination posits a future possibility and both mental states represent events that are not presently occurring. future and post-future. A (whole) recollection is re-instated via a trace which is activated by a present perception. The grammatical divisions of time expressed by verbal tenses such as ‘wrote’ or ‘write’ are grounded by a semantic dependence relation between ‘ante’ and ‘post’. That is the semantic condition of autobiographical memory and even of semantic memory. becomes ‘he (has) passed out because he had drunk too much’. On my reading of Bolzano’s ground-consequence relation. Bolzano requires an overlap of features and a part-whole relation for memory retrieval. its crucial function is the ordering principle of ante and post or ground and consequence and the semantic dependence of the latter on the former. preterit and ante-preterit tenses and forward to the ante-future. More importantly. The grounding relation is the semantic cornerstone of the part-whole relation which is the principle of the memory trace. Thus I can recall an entire poem if I am prompted with a single line or I can recollect a past seaside holiday by looking at pictures of a seaside resort. a retrospective past time is expressed as the ante-preterit: ‘I have seen him last week’ becomes ‘I had seen him last week’. Recollection posits a past possibility. or the sequential order of ‘is’ and ‘was’ and this is an objective grounding relation which is necessary for expressing positions in time. Provided it bears the same relation to a past period as the perfect does to the present. there would be no autobiographical memory to speak of. Besides. as in ‘he (has) passed out because he (has) drunk too much’ or ‘because he is after drinking’.132 Chapter Four consequence relation: if a proposition p is the nearest ground of a second proposition q. then q cannot be the nearest ground of p. The main divisions in time (at least in IndoEuropean languages) are based on the ante-post principle: positions in time are constructed from a theoretical zero-point ‘now’ back to the postpreterit. whereas perception presents events that are presently occurring. particularly regarding its conditions of irreflexivity and intransitivity.

On Autobiographical Memory 133 consequence of ‘then’. I say: ‘It was a restful time because I slept a lot. I posit my past perception of that event as antecedent to my present recollection which is its (partial) consequence. 89 Consecutive clauses expressing the ground-consequence relation. The former gives reasons for the latter (and the latter are positioned as having occurred before). present or future are defined in relation to the position in time when the action or event is described. Verbal tenses indicate the action (and its continuity or completeness) in relation to the time of the utterance and the verb identifies the animate perceived instigator of the action. my recollection is justified. 89 See on this Charles Fillmore’s famous paper The case for case (1967:25). how it functions and why it works the way it does. Since my recollection occurs because of my perception. since the agentive relation is governed by cases which are not matched by the grammatical surface-structure relation of subject and object. ‘earlier’ grounds ‘later’ and ‘later’ is grounded in ‘earlier’ because ‘earlier’ explains ‘later’. Recalling a lazy summer. it is grounded on the past tenses which explain why ‘now’ is the case. such as ‘she cried because he hit her’ coordinate the agentive relation and the sequentially ordered positions in relation to the action. tense distinctions indicating the position of an action or event in the past. remembering that John broke the window. This is also how the ‘because’ relation coordinates agents. Conclusion In these two chapters I tried to present a plausible top-bottom account of autobiographical memory: how it is structured. . As I mentioned in the introduction to part II of this work. In addition. watched movies and read several paperbacks a week’. for the grounding relation obtains. This perspective presupposes an agent and an ergative language system which identifies the agent. from liminal to supraliminal levels. The structure of autobiographical memory (and memory in general) is hierarchical. from the perspective of the theoretical zero-point ‘now’ or the time of the utterance. The relation in which respective positions in time are defined is the grounding relation: actions or events stand in a ground-consequence relation and this relation sequentially orders their positions in time as ante and post where the former explains the latter. which is why a step-wise account of autobiographical memory in terms of retention and reproduction or primary and secondary memory. actions and events in autobiographical memory. Or. That is why autobiographical memory has a semantic base. as in: ‘John broke the window’ or ‘the window was broken by John’.

Erinnerung. Husserl says of the remembered object: “Now it is seen as if hidden by a veil. the contours of which are marked by partially occluded disks: we see a ‘subjective triangle’.and third-person interest in recollection. I argue that our recollection is grounded by our interest or active attention which constructs saliences reasons that ground and justify our recollection. without abrupt breaks or jumps. Phantasie. I would not confuse my recollection of a sunset with a perception. Either I relive earlier experience as the past runs its course again in successive phases or I vaguely recall a song I once heard or a professor I once met. Bildbewusstsein. as the last Graz school Gestalt psychologist Gaetano Kanisza has shown in his diagrams of triangles and rectangles: we can visually experience an absent geometrical figure. viz that continuity in recollection is constructed similarly to mathematical continunity: recollection only approximately reproduces our experience of a continuous temporal flow.134 Chapter Four respectively. viz a function or relation between variables that varies smoothly. as well as in narrating and reading autobiographical accounts is not in where a character is going Gaetano Kanisza (1955) “Margini quasi-percettivi in campi con stimulazione omogenea”: 7-30 91 Husserl. as if it were a perception. 90 In recollection. 90 . An interesting problem in recollection is the question of how we can apprehend something absent. depending on how I attend to it. see also: 241. I argue that autobiographical memory is a construction and that the necessary conditions for this construction are autonoetic awareness and the ‘I’ as a coordinate system.” 91 Even if the veil were lifted a little. seems appropriate. I explain recollection as construction in Aristotelian terms of dramatic art. Finally. the ‘as-if’ mode reproduced in imagination. in the mode of make-belief. viz a time that is sensed and tensed. Apprehension of absent things is possible. Such an explanation requires a rigorous formulation of continuity. yet I have access to it. I sustain an intuitivist view. without having a full-blooded recollection of my past experience. continuity is defined using the notion of limit to account for the progressive and unbroken approach of a function to a value. In mathematics. as mimesis of an action. perception of time or chronaesthesia. Why expound a view of secondary memory as a construction that follows the rules of works of art? Because our first. then as breaking through the haze. Either I am displaced into the past. as well as an explanation of how and why autobiographical recollection is continuous. Hua 23 :345 . These saliences function as attention-magnets – they are detectable by passive attention or sensitivity to reason. we also apprehend things that are not-present: we see again a scene we once perceived. or my recollection hovers at the periphery of my actual present.

On Autobiographical Memory 135 or even what he is going to do. but in what happened to him for that. That is how (and why) autobiographical memory is forward-directed by being oriented to the past: it constructs the past as surely as it constructs the reverse temporal linearity leading up to it. in turn. determines what he is going to do. .

as well as considering or construing notions and conditions as variable. The method of variation involves considering the same notions and conditions in different situations. cognitive science and phenomenology to semantics and literary techniques on one hand and contrasting memory theories through several centuries of philosophy. from epistemology. The method of variation involves considering the same notions and conditions in different situations. Instead.FINAL CONCLUSIONS The aim of this investigation of autobiographical memory was to work out a philosophical explication of how it works and to formulate plausible replies to questions such as: ‘what are the defining features of autobiographical memory?. Certainly. whatever else it may be. A side-effect of such a broad-scale approach is to brand it as interdisciplinary. memory has to be considered from different perspectives to integrate its contributing factors – but that work can hardly be carried out by a single researcher. For this reason I examine autobiographical memory across various disciplines. as well as considering or construing notions and conditions as variable. or varying certain components in a given situation. In order to work out the ‘whole octave’ of the processes constituting this active structure called autobiographical memory. For this reason I examine autobiographical memory across various disciplines. autobiographical memory. this nature is organic. rather I assume that. integrated. On this assumption I forge a tuning fork for determining the diapason or range of ingredients and conditions for. viz pertaining to living human beings as a basic. on the other. ‘what is a recollection and what are the sufficient and necessary conditions for a recollection to occur?’ I approach the problem of autobiographical memory as an historian of philosophy using an analytical method and my research is based on the assumption that history of philosophy reveals the nuts and bolts of contemporary ‘interdisciplinary’ discussions. coordinated and active structure. neurophysiology. I use the method of variation of parameters. . I attempt a variation of autobiographical memory’s parameters in two memory systems in order to determine its range of voice through all notes. In my top-bottom analysis I do not claim to determine the ‘nature’ of autobiographical memory. ‘how is it structured and how does it function?’. or varying certain components in a given situation.

autobiographical memory is the memory of intentional human actions and experiences. viz attention and judging. certain notions. a sense or awareness of time. Memory traces as dispositions can account for the renewal of a past experience in the present – they are residues or persistent states that enable recollection by bridging the temporal gap between the time of the occurrence of an experience of an event and the time of its recollection. Primary memory or retention is actually a kind of perception involving foreground/background segregation. Bolzano and Hering’s respective memory theories may not be well-known but they are emblematic of a position in epistemological philosophy (now re-formatted as cognitive science) which produced the so-called ‘mental capacity’ model of memory. From a phenomenological point of view. conditions and conjunctions remain constant: a hierarchical or step-wise structure of perception and reflection. In addition. The paradox of recollection as the ‘perceived past’ is unravelled by combining Husserl’s and Campbell’s stepwise accounts of autobiographical memory. I reconstruct an epistemological account based on two 19th Century views using a dispositional notion of the memory trace. viz how we can infer that there is a connection between a past and a present experience and how we can explain the latter as prompted by the former. a capacity for auto-noetic awareness. a whole-part relation and the condition of reidentification and recognition. This model deals with the problem of causality in recollection. 1 The second memory model is phenomenological: following Husserl. it describes autobiographical memory as a construct directly linked to perceived experience via imagination and the rules of make-belief that govern its reproduction of personal past experiences. On this model. The epistemological model’s causal relation is 1 See Bolzano.5. The upshot of my research is that across both memory models. Other concepts are complementary: the memory trace in the first model is complemented by the continuity condition in the second model. viz a sense of self and a sense of ownership of a recollection.On Autobiographical Memory 137 My investigation comports two complementary parts expounding two models of autobiographical memory: first. § 283. this model presupposes the notions of conscious experience and self-awareness and a first-person perspective. . describing secondary memory is describing how we keep track of our past and tell our own history and involves affective as well as doxastic states. This memory model correlates empirical and conceptual data according to Bolzano’s motto that what is certain on grounds of reason cannot be refuted by a contrary experience. Secondary memory or recollection is not explained by recurring to causal relations but using an intuitionist notion of continuity (following Weyl) and a subjective temporal framework. WLIII.

The first model’s assumption that autobiographical memory is oriented to the past is complemented by the second model’s assumption that an autobiographical recollection constructs the past. .138 Final Conclusions complemented by the phenomenological model’s temporal modes. The cognitive problem of reproducing in the present a past informational state is resolved by the phenomenological analysis of perceptual salience and the role of attention. It follows that the epistemological model is compatible with the phenomenological model and that autobiographical memory has describable properties which remain invariant under changes of context or changes in the system that describes it. Such invariances are a sufficient condition for asserting that these properties are plausible beyond a reasonable doubt. The recognition of the rules relating these invariances is a necessary condition for describing autobiographical memory. The first model’s ‘resonance’ metaphor is complemented by the second model’s ‘concordance’ metaphor.

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93. 91. 37. 123–127.. 15. 36. 137 causality 3......77.... 101–106. 16. 44. 13.... 94. 137 after-effect . 102–106. 45.. 71... 106. 116 . 137 Cassirer... 71. 89–91. 45. 129. 103.. 25. 48.. 60. 109..... 25.. 67. 118. 64.. 38... 100. 111... 105.. 94. 80. 134 attentive.... 138 ~al .... 35.. 130 believe 26. 6..49–51. 17.. 8.... B belief 9. 21. 106 Bühler. 71. 134 attention 3. 121 Bermúdez. 118–122... 14. 20. 118.. 14.31.. 42.. 11. 79–82... 11. 69... 46.... 83 attunement.. 123. 93. 64... 18... 33... 125.. 113. 137 cognition 6.... 119. 105... 78.. 73. 6. 118 cause . 121 Aristotle 9. 10. 46–49 ~ effect . 24....... 127 Campbell.. 48. 29. 63.. 78. 77. 7. 23. 134 affection . 44. 126. 37. 31. 58.. 78.. 88.. 34. 99. 29 colour constancy. 103. 84. 18. 17. 33.. 80.... 27. 37.... 126 ~-magnet .... 8. 118... 58.. 72. 107.. 7. 44. 87 action 55. 25.... 13.. 87.. 58.. 51. Ernst.... 86.28. 93...... 29.... 15..... 93. 137 condition 9. 38. 1.. 79. William . 131. 16. 36... 58. 117. 133. 124. 123. 95... 36.. 45. 63. 9.. 54. 134. 18. 80... 101. John 1.. 31. 60. 131.. 124–126.... 58. 90.. 29. 36. 127... 36. 66.. 90 abstraction .. 13. 60. 66. 63. 21. 69. 109....INDEX A ability 1. 97.. 26.. 98. 61. 2. 22. 90. 130. 74. 38–40... 89... 126 affective 77. 111. 100.. 41.. 129 ~ual 2. 71. 119. 87. 66... 19. 30.. 88.. 72. 91.. 83.. 16. 136.... Karl.. 77. 74.. 118. 100. 126. 3.. 49. 61 C Calabi.. 2. 73. 32.... 10–14.. 102– 104.. 128. 32. 77.. 123. 56.. 28. 72. 138 cognitive ground.. 52. 75. 92. 13. 38 animals ... 114. 21. 75 Brewer. 119.. 82.. 118. 79.... 137..... John . 47–51. 30.. 46 concept 3. 7.... 127... 87. 137 ~ model of memory 9... 88.... 117...... 50.. 69. 9.2.... 68. 101. 60. 72... 90.. 71... 109. 67. 120.. 41. 89. 126–129. 26.. 123... 8.... 16–19.. 76.6 Brough.. 54.. 13. 54.. 137 capacity 1. 69. 61. 73. 55–60 appearance 23. 130 cognitive 1. 131..... 45. 33.... 64... 131 Aristotelian 13..... 125. 68. 137. 29.. 40. Clotilde 93.. 91. 101... 3..17.... 13. 29.... 27. 12. 43... 108. 131.23... 128. 108–111. 90. 26. 88... 38. 67... 67. 68.. 131 causal 2. 125..... 117. 114. José-Luis .. 57–62. 15. 103... 56. 83.. 122. 47..

.. 134 explicit 54. 31. 16. 127... 119. 20... 116.. 34. 83.. 10.. 95.. 110.. 13–15. 83 Hering... 128 Deutscher... 127 conscious 25.. 27.. 111. 77. 81.. 79.. 123 explanation 7. 79... 95. 88. 137 nested ~ . 9... 137 continuous 1. 115. 2... 125 sameness of ~ ... 137 H Hacking. 36.. 3..45..... 84. 115..... 45. 130. 97.. 84. 37. 68... 102. 52. 116 content 18–21... 77 ~d recall .... 45. 98.. 117.... 91.. 40–44..150 108.2. 119–123 epistemological 19... 92 confabulation. 32.. 137 ~al trace theory . 137 construction 3.. 60. 79. 83. 115. 45.. 82. 121. 128... 55. 87. 89. 46.. 33. 137 Hume. 129.. 30. 126. 62.. 9... 84. 108. 45–48.. 64. 23.. 117.. 34..... 61. 68. 3. 50. 91.. 62.. 1. 55.. 126.. 63.... 55...... 79.13.. 83.. 45. 129. 132. 93.. 110–112. 110–118. 47.. 93... 59. Ewald 2. 32.. 81.. 63..... 79. 54. 88. 92 reflective ~s. 113.. 59.1 Dokic.. 24... 25.. 82 forget . 68. 48. 137 constructed continuum . 71.. 26. 2... 82. 108.. 31. 58. 113–115 experimental . 68. 138 event 2. 136.. 91... 13.. 99. 81. 127..... 78..24. 35. 100...... 62. 64. 51. 44.. 89. 55.... 45. Jérôme 8... 51.. 118–124. 54.. 64. 72. 81 configuration 2. 116. 110.. 48.. 38–63..69.. 44.. 123–125 engram. 100.. 56.. 117–120. 56. 73.. 15. 38. 87. 82. 43..... 41. 17.. 76. 59–61. 50. 66...34. 71. 87–91..... 90. 86. 41.. 55. Ian . 83 G grounding 32... 78.. 122–124.. 109. 90–92.. 63. 114.... 95..19–23. 73–78.... 38. 137 ~al 43.. 43. 26. 18.. 129..... 13. 13. 45... 54. 56. 71.. 137.. 42. 49 Index E ecphory ... 104.. 116. 105. 74. 98. 73–98... 29.7. 24. 96... 37.18. 12... 90. 63..30. 15. 92... 44. 134. 84– 87..... 21. 42..24.. 36. 8. 31. 88. 67... 33....... 72.. 137. 110. 81–83. 43. 133... 38... 80. 78. 34.. 96. 123. 38... 128. 39. 102. 83.... 68.. 67.. 132.. 68. 37. 36.. 128 consciousness 14. 36.... 73. 62... 30–38. 7.... 138 ground-floor ~s 7.. 3. 94–97. 99. 15. 82. 24–29. 95.. 70. 55 emotion.... 38.. 31. 12. 81. 137 experience 1.. 32.. 121. 47. 123. 128. 32. 102. 63. 112. 11.. 18.. 77.. Max . 93 ... 41. 101... 114.. 101... 92. 117. 50...15. 134. 114. 45–51. 17. 119 doxastic state . 34 continuity 1. 133. 97.. 121... 113. 115 F first person. 78.. 123.. 50... 109.. 8. 66. 93. 41. 134 cue 2. 51. 134 construct 69. 25...... 120. 76.. 38 disposition 2.... 130 ~ relation See ground-consequence relation D description 3. 52. 69.. 8. 62 episode 9.... David . 78.... 101... 84. 137 human 1. 48..

137 intuitions .. 20–22. 62 Loftus. 127. 91 K Kandel...... 64. 84.... 49.... 59. 106.... 15..74.. Ferdinand 7.. 81–85....... 76 instinct..74... 50.. 26.. 137 recollective ~. 44.. 111. Edmund 2.... 43–52.. 136. 8. 107 ~ trace 6–8.. 25.... 31........ 118. 31. 10..... 10... 26.. 137 151 I identity ..84.. 30. 48.. 124 judging .... 91................ 94.... 128 form of ~ . 119– 126..32 ~al state 29...... 136 ~ theatre .118 information 7.. 26–29. 1–3.... 28. 105.... 6–15.... 57 knowing 29... 103...15... 113.. 57.. 138 knowledge 2. 118........ 45... 22. 85.. Eric 6... 45–49... 24... 58... 14.. 76–79......... 73. 36–38. 117–119....... 84–88.... 94.. 26.. 44... 109... 90.14.... 137 autobiographical ~ .. 123... 54–56.. 108.. 32. 26–28. 73.. 35. 33.... 86. 13... 62.... 71–73.. 73 Leibniz.. 29. 35. 86.. 34–36 Luria.... 52.. 28.. 13.. 34........ 95–116.... 132... 31. 33.. 94. 114... 58–61.. 22–24.. 33.... 80.. 133. 11. 112. 132....9.. 90....... 27.. 41–43.. 92.. 58..... 91 Linke... 95 Jespersen.. 60 intention 87..105.12.... 58... 134... 58. 63.... 29.. 40. 27.... 137. 87–91... 63 Kant. 39..... 51.. 95 Ligocka..... 46.85... 42–46. 72. 22.... 44 invariant . 140–148 ~ colours . 86... Elizabeth... John .. 30... 134. 67. Roman .. 88. 83. 25..... 108.... 63.. 60. 90. 6... 33... 69 Libet..... 52... 87. 9. 54–56. 58... Alexander .... Otto .... 9....103.......... 28. 51... 66. 75. 75 identical... 29... 7.. 117 ... 76....... 73 ~ model ..... 119 ~al content.. 138 Ingarden.. 68... 14. 102... 75–77. 18..80 judgment 2.44..27........ 111.......... 27. 63 ~ experience 7. 8... 129 knowing how. 125 ~al 1.... 123.. 137 ~-oriented deixis . 91..... 71.. 66. 36.... 24. 96... 29.. 112. 128 inner sense. 87. 87.. 21 learning . William .... 117– 123. 66..... 9. 91. 32.. 105.. Roma ... 61.. 54–64.. 94.. 37... 127.. 28. 91 ~ judgment .... 59. 126..... 51. 107... 102.. 100... 58. 91 ~ loss . Immanuel . 76 M memory 1–3. 119 L law of association ... 32.. 59.. 16. 132.7..On Autobiographical Memory Husserl. 52. 14. 17....... 15. 137 ~ system .. 44.. 69. 21.. 34–36. 90..... Benjamin . 126. 45. 32. 75. 113–115 Locke.. 45–50 ~ distortion ... 13.. 31–33... 37...... 63. 15... 20.. 19. 45.. 6–8.... 10... 107–110.... 35. 51... Gottfried Wilhelm .. 105 Imagination . 57–60. J James.... 84....... 32–41. 109. 106 imaginary . 58. 17. 26..... 7.. 21 imagination 2. 13.. 120.. 16–18. 35.. 11.. 18...... 9... 42... 57..19...... 120. 15. 9..... 67.. 21...... 44.. 118... 73 source of ~ 3. 93.... 32–34. 3..... 25......... 109. 51. 66–69.... 91. 58.... 38.......

.. 73.14. 85–117. 121.. 98... 120. 109. 121 living ~.. 128... 48. 126–128.. 18. 35...... 46–48. 109.. 88.. 44. 47. 30. 29.... 94.. 52. 24. 127. 88. 21.. 81. 15. 75. 60. 84.. 132–138 ~ episode . 22– 26..... 31.. 14.. 123 ~ capacity. 81– 84. 74–78.. 60.. 89.. 110. 56.... 85. 95.. 106.. 120 ~ event 1.. 63. 52. 74. 125... 26. 120–122. 51.. 119.... 13. 60. 8. 17... 10.. 98 ~ content .. 96... 106.. 20. 76. 108.. 50 phylogenetic ~ 40. 112.43... 113. 91. 73 ~ phenomena. 49... 51. 29–32. 14. 98. 127..30. 40. 131 sequential ~ 71. 94. 22. 122 sense of the ~.. 19.. 84. 32....... 113... 49 ~ state 2.. 89... 133. 126.. 20... 30.. 66.. 7–10. 52... 81. 55.. 124.. 121 implicit ~. 69.33.... 130.. 68.. 82. 2. 73. 97. 28.. 69.. 94.. 50... 9–11... 59. 27.. 73. 118. 134 mind 9. 102. 27.. 92–115. 44. 79. Alva.. 20. 40. 76–78.26. 132 P past 1–3.. 85. 12.. 33. 42–45.. 29.. 123 ~ act 9.. 102.... 35–38. 58.. 94. 94.. 119.. 134.. 64. 85–87.... 20. 71. 111. 63.. 73 mental 3. 24.. 96.. 80. 104.. 120–126.. 77. 102.. 97... 49...152 66–69...67. 95. 116–124.121... 17–19. 137 short-term ~.. 67... 75–83.... 89. 125 mode 85–87... 17.. 21. 70.. 104..... 84.44. 76. 17. 61. 115. 37. 111. 17. 118 explicit ~ 44. 122 autobiographical ~ 36. 117. 86 perception 7. 68.. 137 personal ~ . 81–84. 7. 132–138 episodic ~ 1..... 71–73.. 26... 29–31.. 58. 59–61. 8... 84... 137 secondary ~ 84. 107. 43.. 72. 112.. 42.. 93. 10. 114 O object 15. 6. 133. N Nabokov. 69. 115. 107... 29–32. 91. 42. 127. 17. 104 modification . 76. 13. 18... 88.103.... 81. 134 attentional ~ ... 74.. 115. 23. 127 non-conceptual .40. 42. 59. 95.. 51. 54. 46. 16..59. 89 working ~. 92. 127. 127.... 87–92.. 96.. 68. 35.. 98.. 125. 13... 71–74. 31. 91. 134. 31–33. 78. 75. 25. 77–79.. 87. 51.. 98. 42–45. 43. 81. 9.. 67.. 38. 26. 31.. 45.... 67..101. 89. 76... 48. 83. 13. 43. 119. 122. 44. 61. 84.. 61. 96. 72.. 132 mimesis . 29.. 44–48. 59. 112–114.. 60. 125.. 48. 85. 58. 129–132 order 15... 61 primary ~ 73. 45... 107–110... 121. 86 long-term ~ 6.. 49 ~ event . 35. 29.. 13–16.9. 125. 28. 120. 112.... 38... 33. 119 attentional ~ .... 72.. 30.. 25. 2...... 73. 118. 132 ~ experience 1.. 78....85. 73. 100. 64. 95.. 113.. 116 neuroanatomic .. 84 narrative 2.. 26. 126. 19. 73. 74.. 67. 90. 89. 80–100.. 85. 53.. 128.. 30.. 85. 134 ~ive 12. 31. 45.. 124 Index narration . 76–78.. 87–90. 12. 7. 118.. 35–37... 33.. 90. 122.. 68. 16. 117. 61 Noë. 115. 41.. 22. 72. 41. 123 ~ change. 27... 116–119. 51. 45. 28. 122 . 104... 29... 35. 41. 130. 36. 123.. 133.. 17.. 60. 50. Vladimir ... 129.

43. 47. 8. 123 persist . 106..... 35. 30...... 124. 84.. 27. 33. 97. 137 remember . 94. 7. 76. 48. 75. 91. 106... 66 representation ..... 138 recollection 2.. 91.. 48.... 91...... 63.. 40.. 91– 94... 3.. 14.. 42. 87. 64. 77. 25. 125. 99.. 88.. 67. 125... 112. 103–137 redintegration . 6–51. 7. 137 re-identify 8. 15. 137. 34. 64. 33. 27... 33.. 83–98. 41..... 50... 67–69.. 44. 111.. 37. 84. 125 ~al state . 120. 126 past ~ 28. 87. 77. 44. 122 ~ify .. 128.. 48 reflection.. 130.. 53......1. 25... 122... 114... 76. 22. 82.. 129. 60... 46. 54.. 71....... 74. 44–48. 11–18.. 130 remembrance . 96 relation 1.... 79.. 101..... 78... 123.. 60.... 60–66.. 38...21.. 32. 9. 71. 34. 12.. 84. 28.. 67. 26. 132........ 106.. 106.... 80. 66–69... 112. 137 perceive 10. 110. 90... 47. 89.. 14... 24. 95... 63.. 10–15. 10. 124–127... 26. 98. 89 re-identification 16.. 90. 16. 47. 29. 13–15. 84. 8... 46. 37. 96–100. 83 reproduce . 34. 44. 75. 36. 58. 51.... 67... 98.. 115. 76. 18.. 101.. 60. 106. 87. 137 recall 2.. 41.. 126.. 113 prompt . 44. 105. 109. 121..... 40... 50. 134. 134 recognition 7. 49. 90. 106. 104....... 108... 77 153 R reason 67. 48. 113. .. 29. 12... 72–96. 60. 122... 24.. 119–121.. 66. 113. 82.... 48. 113. 10. 80.... 91.. 38.. 63.. 64... 21. 106. 29. 22.. 59.. 36. 132 whole-part ~ ... 35. 20... 113–115. 58.... 109.. 2..... 68. 17. 113. 110. 62. 83... 73.. 108 Phenomenology.. 110. 9.. 117.. 129...... 58. 88... 44.. 3. 113. 57..... 101. 133.66 present 2. 96. 18.. 31. 74.. 77 reproduction 9.. 89. 123 perceptual 7.. 47... 3.. 62. 108. 80. 100... 68. 121.. 86. 73. 10.... 119. 52. 60. 80..... 48. 51. 122.. 45. 41.. 77. 37... 10–34. 79.. 17.. 89. 75. 109. 44. 17.. 109..... 80.. 128 ~al 1. 43. 57. 75–78.... 84 phantasy .119 phenomenological 2. 109 remind...... 59. 90. 27....... 122.. 117. 36... 73. 50.... 121.. 117–120. 119... 74. 58–61. 33.. 63. 123. 35.. 51.... 68.. 92 self-reflective. 137 ~ification 71... 54. 80. 125–127. 98–106. 16..... 121. 62. 76.. 85... 100.. 85.... 137 reproduce 29. 126. 50.. 121. 112–116.. 92–98... 103.. 120. 109.. 125–128.. 106.. 102.. 90. 111. 31.... 66.. 116. 18. 121.On Autobiographical Memory 120–123. 82. 80. 126. 130. 89. 63. 118.. 78. 30.. 13. 92...... 130.... 137. 123. 71.... 112. 134 retention 2. 77.. 66.. 29. 63... 137 reflective 7..... 71. 137. 117. 49. 21. 46.. 58. 104........... 84–88. 29. 85.. 113. 87. 119.. 119. 75. 34. 122 phenomena 6.. 89–91.. 37.. 33.. 104.. 76. 97. 76.. 130–133 part-whole ~ . 81. 27–30.... 116. 132– 134. 137 ground-consequence ~ 69. 125–134..... 138 ~ experience 1.... 77... 42.. 49.. 138 Plato . 67. 94. 37. 7...

93.. 123. 48.. 110.. 54. 22... 45. 123. 85 Stumpf. 18.... 63.... 132. 34. 9.... 137 ~-consciousness .. 133 ~ive 2.. 99... Steven. 93...... 2. 66..... 36. 63.. 49. 93. 38. 58... 134. 75. 80. 116... 75 semantic 1.. 64. 42. 79.. 36.21.. 98. 127. 44–46. 45. 48. 79–89.. 67..... 43.. 17. Sydney .. 100. 21... 36... 71... 32.. 21.62 Ryle.. 81... 133 testimony . 74.. 126.. 97. Daniel 8. 94. 83.. 50.. 86.. 82. 15... 110 ~ relation .. 68... 97. 59..8.. 112 storage 13. 87. 98 successive 2... 93.. 37. 77.... 73. 135... 14. 137 ~-awareness 14. 2. 77 Sorabji..... 58... 35. 22.. 17. 95.. 46... 101. John . 134 affective ~ ... 137 ~ continuity 68.. 60.27.... 109. 83... 21. 97.. 108... 92. 107 stepwise conception of memory . 2.. 7. 133 past ~ .. 72. 62.. 11... 119. 134. 106. 92.. 133 verbal ~ .. 90. 32. 111.... 93 perceptual ~ 93.2... 44. 104........ 119. 59.101 Schacter. 2. 44.. 69. 68 synapse ... 85. 25.. 24.... 68... 72–75. 56. 58. 84. 122–126.. 119.154 109... 133.... 117.. 78.... 83.. 44.. 33–38. 18.. 46.... 59. 38... 84. 133 Semon... 127 S salience . 45. 66. 128–130. 111. 71–76.. 112.. 26.99. 87.. 81. 107. 89.. 121... 74. 35.. 102. 16.. 128. 70.14. 129. 22.. 30–32.. 125. 114. 111... 87.. 111 sensitive ~ to reason 3. 48. 8... 3... 132... 76... 83 Index skill . 99. 13. 47.. 41... 97..1.. 60. 80. 86. 93. 15. 71–83.3.. 97. 10.. 13. 115..... 115. 118... 78. 116. 124 . 109. 44. 74. 52. Carl ..... Richard 2... 51.. 59.... 21.. 87... 134 Sutton.. 69–75. 92.. 78. 25... 55 sensation 20. 66. 122.. 12. 29.. 43.. 91. 35... 37... 94. 69 tense. 93. 110.. 122 rhetorical figure..... 132. 98. 134 Shoemaker. 98....... 37. 12. 51. 28... 117. 68. 98. 130 thought 10.... 17.... 14. 82. 103. 13..... 114. 87. 26.. 109... 12. 94. 126... 137 ~ horizon . 28...... 106... 87 schema . 132 retrieve 10.. 37.. 63. 84–86.... 116.. 94. 120. 103. 16. Richard 9... 90... 21..... 137 succession 67... 20... 89. 44. 43– 45.... 59. 58.. 76. 130. 68... 111 subject 13. 64.... 82. 79.. 95. 68. 118 self 36. 68. 68. 104.98. 29.. 59. 59. 88.. 96. 58.. 128.26... 92. 59... 95. 32. 103. 3.42... 100. 83. 83. 116.. 26.. 118... 42. 57. 79... 95. 20.73.... 97.. 11....... 138 ~ order 2. 88. 112.. 131... 130... 94. 67. 57. 24.. 55. 13.. 75 T temporal 1. 74..... Gilbert .. 137 retentive 10. 88. 96 ~ gap 9.... 19. 38.. 101.. 94. 85 Rose. 109 ~ interval . 112 retrieval 2. 91... 64. 116 ~ duration 18........ 117 ~ mode .. 91.... 115 ~ extension ... 67. 16... 83... 22.. 73.. 61........ 123. 34–36..... 76... 138 salient phenomena. 10.....

74.. 62. 79 Wundt. 118.. 69 phenomenal ~.... 134. 112 time 1. 118. 8. 14.. 27. 87.... 57. 102 Z Zahavi. 37.... 119. 55. 17. 29.. 91...On Autobiographical Memory think 10.... 50. 69. 15. 3. 7.. 22–38. 60. 132 ~ theory ... 137 perceived ~. 91– 97.. 14.. 68. 86.64.... 72.. 75. 98.. 81. 77. 63.. Endel 2.. 37... 98. 44. 54.. 114. 2.. 59. 117... 61. 118 155 U unconscious 25. 3. 36. 78. 31... 13.. 85. Ludwig ..... 102. 94.. 22... 114 Tinbergen. 136 W Wittgenstein.. 11.. 108. 101. 20. 136 method of ~ . 67. 95. 101..... 132. 73..... 98. 41–51..... 57. 76–88... Dan ... 17.. 47. 78. 13. 126. 86...... 24.. 129... 88.. 111..... 62.. 93.. 100. Christa.. 7..... 60. 93.. 131 Tulving.. 123.. 45. 18.. 58... 100....... 120. 68 V Varela.. 66........ 94. 133. 15... 8.. 117 transition .. 84.. 17... 2. Nikolaas . 75. 8.. 9–11... 43.. 46..... 129 Wolf. 104. 116. 71. 13.. Francisco 2... 17. 66–68.... 27.. 56. 81 .. 25. 67.. 110. 10....... 127 variation. 44.55 trace 2.. 128 truth.. Wilhelm.......