University of Hertfordshire

From the same journal

By the same authors


  • Shazia Akhtar
  • Lucy.V Justice
  • Catriona M. Morrison
  • Martin A. Conway
  • Mark L. Howe
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Original languageEnglish
Number of pages9
Pages (from-to)1400-1402
JournalPsychological Science
Journal publication date1 Sep 2019
Early online date14 Aug 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2019


Bauer, et al. (2019) argue that Akhtar et al. (2018) state that infants and young children have no memory. But what we actually argued is that infants and young children do not in the main have conceptually rich autobiographical memories comparable to those of adults. What infants and young children do have is the ability to retain some fragments of previous experience – early episodic memory. One powerful implication of this is that when adults provide conceptually rich accounts of memories dating to approximately the age of 3 years and younger it is most probably the case that, in many instances (estimated at about 40% in Akhtar, et al.), these are adult embellishments of poorly remembered details, facts told them about their childhood, family stories, and so on. They are what we termed fictional first memories.


© The Author(s) 2019

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