This introductory chapter begins with a brief discussion of the use of metaphors when contemplating memory. Plato, for instance, imagined memory as a wax tablet on which our experiences are inscribed, while other metaphors make the memory a storeroom, either for information, like a library or archive, or for goods, like a wine cellar or warehouse. The chapter then describes the author's considerations in selecting the kinds of forgetting to include in the present volume. The most important goal in making these selections is to show that the study of forgetting confirms what we hope or fear about our memories, namely that they have a disturbing ability to change.
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