The Story of Memory


The Memory Network’s 2014 conference, ‘The Story of Memory’ was held at the University of Roehampton on the 4th and 5th September. The conference set out to pose new questions about the relationship between the senses, cognition, memory, and emotion, and to reinvigorate the debate about the return to a critical investigation of story telling in the twenty-first century.

Speakers included:

  • Paul Bloom (Psychology and Cognitive Science, Yale)
  • Suzanne Corkin (Neuroscience, MIT)
  • Mark Currie (English Literature, QMUL)
  • Asifa Majid (Psycholinguistics, Radboud)
  • Martijn Meeter (Cognitive Psychology, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam)
  • Jamie Tehrani (Anthropology, Durham)

Mark Currie, Professor of Contemporary Literature in the Department of English, Queen Mary, University of London, gave a keynote on ‘Retentional Finitude and Story Form’. This fascinating talk on memory and tense in the fictional ‘selfie’ takes in Aristotle, Augustine, Stiegler and Knausgaard.

Paul Bloom, Professor of psychology and cognitive science at Yale University, gave a talk on ‘The Problem With Stories’.


On 6 September 2014, University College London hosted an accompanying literary organised by The Memory Network in association with The Guardian, ‘MEMORY IN THE TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY’, which featured, in conversation:

• Ian McEwan & Paul Bloom (Yale, USA)

• Suzanne Corkin (MIT, USA) & Hugo Spiers (UCL)

• Maud Casey, Timothy J. Jarvis & Sebastian Groes (Roehampton)

• Anna Stothard & Jason Tougaw (CUNY, USA)

• Naomi Alderman & Jessica Bland (Nesta)