People accumulate experiences over their lifetimes that are central to their identities. In order to establish and verify these identities to themselves and others, people often accumulate memory pointers: objects or photos that they believe will help them remember the experience in the future. The authors show that memory pointers play an important role in safeguarding these memories and hence in verifying and protecting one’s identity over time. They also discuss how photos can have unique effects when they are acquired versus how they later serve as memory pointers.
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