[Milton-L] memorizing dates

Carol Barton cbartonphd at earthlink.net
Sun Feb 22 14:33:34 EST 2004


Essentially, what Rose describes is "synaesthesia," the involvement of two
or more senses simultaneously in the perception of data---in this case,
sight and touch. Mnemonics research has demonstrated pretty convincingly,
for example, that you are much more likely to remember someone's name if on
meeting him or her you look into the person's face, take note of some
identifying characteristic (red hair, a beard, blue eyes, a mole) and say,
"Hi, Hortense!" rather than merely, "Pleased to meet you." I can attest to
the combination of listening to classical music (or instrumental music of
any kind) and reading something one wants to memorize (or better yet, saying
it aloud), as I used this technique when studying for my written
examinations.

I memorized "Jabberwocky" for an undergraduate Communications class, the
first few lines of _The Canterbury Tales_ for graduate Chaucer, and Hamlet's
"to be or not to be" soliloquy for a poetry recitation required at the
doctoral level. Like most of my colleagues, I know bits and pieces of other
things (Biblical passages, a few lines of various poems or plays, etc.)
simply from having recited them again and again while teaching. All have
been useful to me in one form or another  throughout my life.


Best to all,

Carol Barton



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