Adam Paykin

Date of Award


First Advisor

Nancy Bonvillain

Second Advisor

William McHenry


The nature of the human mind necessitates that people put trust in their memories. What can we base the world on, other than our recollections of the world and ourselves? However, because memory is malleable, narratives of the past are crafted to reflect our present ideas. When discussing the collective memory of a community, these narratives can redistributed to a public. These versions are not usually historically accurate, but they nevertheless have a subsequent and substantial effect on the culture of a community because they are believed to be true. This thesis explores, generally, memory and misremembering. More specifically, it discusses the effects and uses of a changing memory on the concepts of time, identity, and truth, both in the mind of an individual and in the greater culture of the United States.