Victimology is the study of the victims of crime and the psychological effects on them of their experience. This phenomena has been tied to false or manufactured memory used to convict people based on recall of events that never actually happened.
In the upcoming webinar hosted by the criminal justice department, senior criminal justice major Joan Roberts will be speaking about victimology and manufactured memories as part of a directed study.
The event is geared toward criminal justice and pre-law students and will focus on repressed memory therapy and its effects on the prosecution of sexual abuse cases.
“The purpose of this event is to educate people on how they can become victims because of false memories,” Roberts said. “We will discuss how adults and children have been, and continue to be, coerced into providing manufactured memories, and how these are used to seek convictions.”
The guest speaker for the event, Mark Pendergrast, has written books on a wide variety of subjects including misremembering and repressed memory. His first book “Victims of Memory: Sex Abuse Accusations and Shattered Lives” focused on the very subject this webinar is about.
“Publishers Weekly” described “Victims of Memory” as “an emotionally charged diatribe against the recovered memory movement.” Pendergrast details in this book how therapists use techniques such as hypnosis, age regression and dream work alongside drugs like Amobarbital, used for its sedative, hypnotic properties to recover memories of childhood abuse.
The webinar will be held in the Learning Resource Center at 6:30 p.m. on April 17. It is free to attend and will be broadcast live via Zoom and can be found at