Embodied remembering

In L. Shapiro (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Embodied Cognition. Routledge (2014)
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Abstract

Experiences of embodied remembering are familiar and diverse. We settle bodily into familiar chairs or find our way easily round familiar rooms. We inhabit our own kitchens or cars or workspaces effectively and comfortably, and feel disrupted when our habitual and accustomed objects or technologies change or break or are not available. Hearing a particular song can viscerally bring back either one conversation long ago, or just the urge to dance. Some people explicitly use their bodies to record, store, or cue memories. Others can move skilfully, without stopping to think, in complex and changing environments thanks to the cumulative expertise accrued in their history of fighting fires, or dancing, or playing hockey. The forms of memory involved in these cases may be distinct, operating at different timescales and levels, and by way of different mechanisms and media, but they often cooperate in the many contexts of our practices of remembering.

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John Sutton
Macquarie University

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