Repressed Memory or Dissociative Amnesia: What the Science Says

  title={Repressed Memory or Dissociative Amnesia: What the Science Says},
  author={Alan W. Scheflin and Daniel Brown},
  journal={Journal of Psychiatry and Law},
  pages={143 - 188}
Legal actions of alleged abuse victims based on recovered memories of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) have been challenged arguing that the concept of repressed memories does not meet a generally accepted standard of science. A recent review of the scientific literature on amnesia for CSA concluded that the evidence was insufficient. The issues revolve around: (1) the existence of amnesia for CSA, and (2) the accuracy of recovered memories. A total of 25 studies on amnesia for CSA now exist, all… 
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Present clinical evidence is insufficient to permit the conclusion that individuals can repress memories of childhood sexual abuse, and many writers have implied that hundreds of thousands, or even millions of persons harbour such repressed memories.
Dissociated or fabricated? Psychiatric aspects of repressed memory in criminal and civil cases.
Because of the reconstructive nature of memory, caution must be taken to treat each case on its own merits and avoid global statements essentially proclaiming either that repressed memory is always right or that it is always wrong.
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There has been a rise in reported memories of childhood sexual abuse that were allegedly repressed for many years, and people with recently unearthed memories are suing alleged perpetrators for events that happened 20, 30, even 40 or more years earlier.
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