Maybe I’ll post something about each book I’ve read. First up: Moonwalking with Einstein by Joshua Foer. A journalist covers a memory competition, gets talked into competing in the next year’s competition, and becomes the reigning American memory champion. This is an entertaining introduction to the ancients’ memory techniques, centered on the concept of the “memory palace”.
The great modern books on ancient and medieval memory are:
- Mary Carruthers: The Book of Memory: A Study of Memory in Medieval Culture
- Mary Carruthers: The Craft of Thought: Meditation, Rhetoric, and the Making of Images, 400-1200
- Mary Carruthers and Jan M. Ziolkowski: The Medieval Craft of Memory: An Anthology of Texts and Pictures
- Frances A. Yates, The Art of Memory
The three ancient sources are: