Most of us have been perplexed by a strange sense of familiarity when doing something for the first time. We feel that we have been here before, or done this before, but know for sure that this is impossible. In fact, according to numerous surveys, about two-thirds of us have experienced déjà vu at least once, and most of us have had multiple experiences.
There are a number of credible scientific interpretations of déjà vu, and this book summarizes the broad range of published work from philosophy, religion, neurology, sociology, memory, perception, psychopathology, and psychopharmacology. This book also includes discussion of cognitive functioning in retrieval and familiarity, neuronal transmission, and double perception during the déjà vu experience.
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Dr Alan Brown is Professor in the Psychology Department in Dedman College at Southern Methodist University. He received his BA from the College of Wooster, and his PhD in human memory from Northwestern University in 1974. Dr Brown has published more than seventy professional articles, as well as six books, on basic and applied areas of human memory and cognition. His primary interest is on investigating different varieties of memory dysfunction, such as the tip-of-the-tongue experience, deja vu, inadvertent plagiarism, and retrieval interference. He has refereed journal articles submitted to more than thirty journals, and currently serves as consulting editor for Memory and Cognition.Review:
"During the past two decades, however, a few hardy souls have reopened the scientific study of deja vu. They hope to nail down a persuasive explanation of the phenomenon, as well as shed light on some fundamental elements of memory and cognition. In the new book The Deja Vu Experience: Essays in Cognitive Psychology (Psychology Press), Alan S. Brown, a professor of psychology at Southern Methodist University, surveys the fledgling subfield. "What we can try to do is zero in on it from a variety of different angles," he says. "It won't be something like, 'Boom! The explanation is there.' But we can get gradual clarity through some hard work..""
-The Chronicle of Higher Education
"Overall this book is an interesting and enjoyable read. The author has done a fine job of assembling and summarizing such a large and diverse body of work covering a long period of time. He demonstrates that the phenomenon is by no means beyond the reach of mainstream cognitive psychology and this book will be an invaluable source for those interested in researching this intriguing phenomenon. -- Kevin Crowley, University of Glamorgan, UK."
"the first book-length scientific study of the phenomenon since the 1980s."
-"The Dallas Morning News, 11/2004
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