4
| News |

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Memory

^
Keep Westword Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Denver and help keep the future of Westword free.

OK, this ooo-eee-ooo story by Katy Human on the front page of today’s Denver Post, about research at the University of Colorado into suppressing traumatic memories, raises two important questions.

First, if Katy Human writes about stuff just because she thinks it’s interesting, does that make it a Human Interest story?

Second, don’t these mad scientists at CU ever go to the movies?

It is a fundamental tenet of sci-fi movies that emotion and memory are what make us -- and Katy -- human. Want to make an android think it’s a real person? Give it memories (cf. Blade Runner). And efforts to erase even deeply painful memories can have disastrous implications for our underlying sense of identity (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind). Most important of all, the delicate matrix of memory, experience and emotional response is what prevents us from turning into pod people -- a lesson memorialized in the 1956 classic Invasion of the Body Snatchers and so central to the entire canon that the movie has spawned three remakes, including this summer’s The Invasion, a Nicole Kidman flick coming next month to a theater near you. Check out the trailer here, and keep your Katy human. -- Alan Prendergast

Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.

 

Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.