You know, somebody gets conked on the head and suddenly can’t remember who they are, who their friends and family are, etc., and yet they retain all their abilities and every other bit of knowledge not relating to their identity.
[And yes, I did just watch “The Bourne Identity” on DVD last night, thank you very much for asking.]
I guess it’s really a two part question – (1) can somebody really get amnesia by being conked on the head, and (2) if so, what are the odds that the resultant amnesia would ONLY affect that person’s sense of identity? And if so, are there any documented cases?
I can certainly imagine somebody undergoing a psychological trauma that would subconsciously cause them to choose to forget who they are, but why would a blow to the head do this?
On a side note, I suffered a concussion in a major car accident a number of years ago. As a result, I have no memory of the events immediately preceding the collision (I lost maybe 5 minutes of my life). However, as soon as I regained consciousness I had no problem with remembering who I was – I just couldn’t understand why I was flat on my back, blind, and hearing a police radio in the background…