Brain Forms Our Identities

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How the Brain Forms Our Identities Our identities are formed through a very distinct process in which our senses interpret the events that we experience. By using our senses and our memories, we act according to what our brains remember and build our own identities. However, traumatic memories cannot be remembered as easily as regular memories can, making it difficult to have a strong and personal identity. Martha Stout’s “When I Woke Up Tuesday Morning, It Was Friday” discusses how trauma can cause the brain to incorrectly process memories, rendering them incomplete and fragmented (421). Unlike trauma, sensory loss has a very different effect on the brain; in certain cases, it can actually promote how we form our own experiences. Oliver Sacks’ …show more content…
Through traumatic memory and sensory loss, we go through different methods in which we can either have difficulty remembering things that have happened or benefit from increased attunement with the world we live in. Stout’s description of fugue definitely confirms the extent to which our memories can define us. Not being able to remember things that happened in the past can be extremely harmful to forming one’s identity. Nevertheless, Sacks’ argument about blindness being able to improve people’s senses also confirms that the extent to which our identities are formed can be determined by sensory loss and the brain’s plasticity. These opposing perspectives show just how much our memories and our senses affect our upbringing. Trauma and post-traumatic stress disorder definitely present negative viewpoints on how bad experiences can ruin a person and make them feel lost and disconnected. However, Sacks’ essay proves that even if someone loses their sight through a traumatic experience, they can recover from it and even experience heightened levels of sensory input and visual imagery. Through the power of language and feeling, those who have lost their sight are capable of seeing with their minds and experiencing everything that life has to offer.. Both good and bad experiences allow us to define our identities, our personalities, and our character. As individuals and as peers, we can benefit from the good things, learn from the bad things, and even in the most difficult of times, we can find something that gives us more hope than we could ever have imagined. Our brains will learn through the power of brain plasticity and we will create our own

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