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Unformatted text preview: Shakespeare’s character Miranda in The Tempest has grown up secluded on an island. When she meets men from the outside world, she is awed at the discovery: “O brave new world / That has such people in’t!” (Signet Classic edition 115). But Fowler’s story is less about a brave new futuristic world than about our engagement with the past, both in private and public memory. The premise of “The Lake Was Full of Artificial Things” is the manipulation of memory. As I mentioned on the first class day, we’ve become aware of how malleable human memory is. Memories can be buried and changed; they can even be created wholly by an outsider’s suggestion or story. Here this malleability of memory is shown through the metaphor of a cybernetic device—again, its precise details are not fully specified—that allows a therapist to reconstruct an intense memory in a patient, allowing that person to have new interactions with the event or person being recalled. In Miranda’s case, she is trying to interact with the lover she the event or person being recalled....
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