Confabulations about People and Their Limbs, Present or Absent

William Hirstein

in The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy and Neuroscience

Published in print July 2009 | ISBN: 9780195304787
Published online September 2009 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks

Confabulations about People and Their Limbs, Present or Absent


This article examines the neurobiological aspects of confabulations. It explains that confabulation is a false memory report and that to confabulate is to make unintentionally an ill-grounded, and hence probably false, claim that one should know is ill-grounded. Confabulation is caused by damage to some perceptual or mnemonic process in the posterior of the brain and damage to some prefrontal process that monitors and can manipulate and/or correct the output of that perceptual or mnemonic process. This article evaluates the application of this two-factor theory to the analysis of Capgras syndrome and anosognosia, the two oddest members of the family of confabulation syndromes.

Keywords: confabulations; false memory report; brain damage; prefrontal process; mnemonic process; Capgras syndrome; anosognia

Article.  19850 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy ; Philosophy of Mind

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribeRecommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »