Article ID: CBB421032030

Michael Faraday’s “loss of memory” revisited (2021)


In the mid-1970s, the psychiatrist Edward Hare published two accounts of Michael Faraday’s memory symptoms, based upon which he suggested the diagnostic possibilities of an amnesic syndrome related to a transient ischemic attack in the vertebrobasilar cerebrovascular system. This article revisits the contemporary evidence of Faraday’s letters and the notes of his physician, Peter Mere Latham, and considers subsequent responses to and shortcomings of Hare’s analysis. In light of more recent conceptualizations of memory disorders, a new formulation for Faraday’s memory symptoms is suggested: namely, that he manifested a functional cognitive disorder.

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Authors & Contributors
Bogousslavsky, Julien
Canone, Eugenio
Chorell, Torbjörn Gustafsson
Corkin, Suzanne
Evans, Dorinda
Giannakopoulos, Panteleimon
Journal of the History of the Neurosciences
Journal of Medical Biography
History of Psychiatry
Perspectives in Biology and Medicine
Physis: Rivista Internazionale di Storia della Scienza
Basic Books
Oxford University Press
Edizioni ETS
Psychology Press
Faraday, Michael
Bruno, Giordano
Ampère, André Marie
Dickinson, Emily
Kierkegaard, Søren Aabye
Molaison, Henry Gustav
Time Periods
19th century
18th century
20th century
20th century, early
16th century
21st century
Great Britain
University College, London

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