Total Recall – The Woman Who Can’t Forget

ff_perfectmemory2_f.jpgI’ve just found an excellent article for one of those ‘Introduction to Psychology’ induction style activities. It concerns Jill Price, a woman who appears to have exceptionally accurate recall for dates and events. As the author explains:

“I first saw Price last May in a YouTube clip of her on 20/20. Diane Sawyer asks Price, an avid television viewer, to identify certain significant dates in broadcast history. When did CBS air the “Who shot JR?” episode of Dallas? When was All in the Family‘s baby episode shown? And so on. Price nails every question. She not only gives the date for the final episode of MASH but describes the weather that day”.

As is so often the case with such case studies, the truth behind the simple headline is at once more complex and more mundane than it initially appears.

I think that the article is a good one for use with classes because it starts off with consideration of cognitive and biological factors, veers into psychopathology and ends up with conclusions that are more psychodynamic in tone. On the way it touches upon a range of research methodologies and ethical issues – all in an accessible tone well suited to an introductory lesson.