Monday, 14 November 2011

False Memory Syndrome Foundation and Martin Theodore Orne, M.D., Ph.D.,

A Brief Overview Of The Founding Members Of

The False Memory Syndrome Foundation

from MindControlForum Website

F.M.S.F. EXECUTIVE DIRECTORS: Peter and Pamela Freyd (psychiatrists)
The Freyds were publicly exposed by their own daughter – Jennifer Freyd (professor of psychology) of child abuse and rape.

F.M.S.F. FOUNDER: Ralph Underwager (psychiatrist)
The world’s foremost authority on false memory, but in the courtroom – is repeatedly exposed as a charlatan. He is a self confessed paedophile who quotes: It is "God’s Will" adults engage in sex with children.

F.M.S.F. ORIGINAL BOARD MEMBERS: Martin Orn (psychiatrist)
Senior CIA Mind Control Researcher: Experimenting in hypnotic programming, dissolving memory and other mind subduing techniques.

F.M.S.F. BOARD MEMBER: Dr Harold Lief (psychiatrist)
CIA Mind Control Researcher. Experimenting in behavioural modification and hypnotic programming.

REFERENCE FROM: The False Memory Hoax – Psychic Dictatorship in the USA By Alex Constantine

The CIA, the False Memory Syndrome Foundation & the Politics of Ritual Abuse

The Devil Denuded

The CIA, in fact, has several designates on the FMSF advisory board. They have in common backgrounds in mind control experimentation. Their very presence on the board, and their peculiar backgrounds, reveal some heavily obscured facts about ritual child abuse.

Martin T. Orne, a senior CIA researcher, is an original board members of the Foundation, and a psychiatrist at the University of Pennsylvania’s Experimental Psychiatry Lab in Philadelphia. In 1962 his forays into hypno-programming (the elicitation of "anti-social" behaviour, dissolving memory and other mind-subduing techniques) were financed by a CIA front at Cornell University. He was also funded by Boston’s Scientific Engineering Institute, another front, and a clearinghouse for the Agency’s investigation of the occult.

The CIA and Pentagon have formed a partnership in the creation of cults. To be sure, the Association of National Security Alumni, a public interest veterans group opposed to clandestine ops, considers it a "primary issue of concern" that the Department of Defense has a "perceived role in satanic cult activities, which qualify in and of themselves as very damaging exercises in mind control."

The smoothing over of the national security state’s cult connections is handled by academic "experts".

A forerunner of the Foundation is based in Buffalo, New York, the Committee for Scientific Examination of Religion, best known for the publication of Satanism in America: How the Devil Got More Than His Due, widely considered to be a legitimate study. The authors turn up their noses to ritual abuse, dismissing the hundreds of reports around the country as mass "hysteria". Cult researcher Carl Raschke reported in a March, 1991 article that he coincidentally met Hudson Frew, a Satanism in America co-author at a Berkeley bookstore.

"Frew was wearing a five-pointed star, or pentagram, the symbol of witchcraft and earth magic," Raschke says.

Shawn Carlson, a contributor to the book, is identified by the media as a "physicist". Yet he runs the Gaia Press in El Cerrito, California, a New Age publishing house with a and occult lore. Carlson is also a "scientific and technical consultant" to the Committee for Scientific Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal (a promoter of the "false memory" theory of ritual abuse and UFO abductions), publisher of the Skeptical Inquirer.

The FMS Foundation is no less eccentric. Within two years of its founding, it was clear that the Foundation leadership was far from disinterested on witchcraft

On the workings of childhood memory, and concealed a secret sexual and political agenda.

FMSF Founder Ralph Underwager (left), director of the Institute of Psychological Therapies in Minnesota, was forced to resign in 1993. Underwager (a former Lutheran pastor) and his wife Hollida Wakefield publish a journal, Issues in Child Abuse Allegations, written by and for child abuse "skeptics".

His departure from the False Memory Syndrome Foundation was hastened by a remark in an interview, appearing in an Amsterdam journal for paedophiles, that it was "God’s Will" adults engage in sex with children.

(His wife Hollida remained on the Foundation’s board after he left). As it happens, holy dispensation for paedophiles is the exact credo of the Children of God cult. It was fitting, then, when Underwager filed an affidavit on behalf of cult members tried in France in 1992, insisting that the accused were positively "not guilty of abuse upon children". In the interview, he prevailed upon paedophiles everywhere to shed stigmatization as "wicked and reprehensible" users of children.

In keeping with the Foundation’s creative use of statistics, Dr Underwager widely considered, or group of British reporters in 1994 that "scientific evidence" proved that 60% of all women molested as children believed the experience was "good for them".

Dr Underwager invariably sides with the defense. His grandiloquent orations have graced courtrooms around the world, often by satellite. Defense lawyers for Woody Allen turned to him, he boasts, when Mia Farrow accused her estranged husband of molesting their seven year-old daughter. Underwager is a virtual icon to the Irish Catholic lobby in Dublin, which raised its hoary hackles against a child abuse prevention program in the Irish Republic. He was, until his advocacy of paedophila tarnished an otherwise glittering reputation, widely quoted in the press, dismissing ritual child abuse as a hysterical aberration.

He is the world’s foremost authority on false memory, but I the courtroom he is repeatedly exposed as a charlatan. In 1988, a trial court decision in New York State held that Dr Underwager was,

"not qualified to render opinion as to where or not (the victim) was sexually molested".

In 1990 his testimony on memory was ruled improper,

"in the absence of any evidence that the results of Underwager’s work had been accepted in the scientific community".

And in Minnesota a judge ruled that Underwager’s theories on,

"learned memory" were the same as "having an expert tell the jury that (the victim) was not telling the truth".

Peter and Pamela Freyd, executive directors of the Foundation, joined forces with Underwager in 1991, and their story is equally wretched. Jennifer Freyd, their daughter, a professor or psychology at the University of Oregon, openly leveled accusations of abuse against her parents at an August 1993 mental health conference in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

"My family of origin was troubled in many observable ways," she said. "I refer to the things that were never ‘forgotten’ and ‘recovered’, but to things that we all knew about".

She gave her father’s alcoholism as an example.

"During my childhood, my father sometimes discussed his own experiences of being sexually abused as an 11 year-old boy, and called himself a ‘kept boy’".

Peter Freyd graduated to male prostitution as an adolescent. At the age of 13, Jennifer Freyd composed a poem about her father’s nocturnal visits:

I am caught in a web
A web of deep, deep terror

she wrote. The diaries of her youth chronicle the,

"reactions and feelings (guilt, shame and terror) of a troubled girl and young woman. My parents oscillated between denying these symptoms and feelings….. to using knowledge of these same symptoms and feelings to discredit me".

"My father," she says, "told various people that I was brain damaged".

The accusation was unlikely. At the time, Jennifer Freyd was a graduate student on a National Science Foundation fellowship. She has taught at Cornell and received numerous research awards. The "brain damage" apologia did not wash. Her mother suggested that Jennifer’s memories were "confabulations" and faulted therapeutic intervention. Pamela Freyd turned to her own psychiatrist, Dr Harold Lief, currently and advisory board member of the Foundation, to diagnose Jennifer.

"He explained to me that he did not believe I was abused," Jennifer recalls. Dr Lief’s diagnosis was based on his belief that Peter Freyd’s fantasies were strictly "homoerotic". Of course, his daughter furrows a brow at the assumption that homoerotic fantasies or a heterosexual marriage exclude the possibility of child molestation. Lief’s skewed logic is a trademark of the Foundation.

He is a close colleague of the CIA’s Martin Orne. Dr Lief, a former major in the Army medical corps, joined the University of Pennsylvania faculty in 1968, the peak of federally-funded behavioural modification experiments at Holmesburg Prison. Dr Orne consulted with him on several studies in hypnotic programming.

His academic writing reveals a peculiar range of professional interests, including "Orgasm in the Postoperative Transsexual" for Archives of Sexual Behaviour, and an exploration of the possibility of life after death for a journal on mental diseased edited by Foundation fellow Paul McHugh. Lief is a director of the Centre for Sexuality and Religion, past president of the Sex Information and Education Council.

And an original board member of the False Memory Syndrome Foundation. Two others, Jon Baron from Penn U. and Ray Hyman (an executive editor of the aforementioned Sceptical Inquirer), a professor of psychology at the University of Oregon, resigned from the board after Jennifer Freyd went public with her account of childhood abuse and the facetious attempts of her parents and their therapist to discredit her. They were replaced by David Dinges, co-director – with the ubiquitous Martin Orne – of the Unit for Experimental Psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania.

"At times I am flabbergasted that my memory is considered ‘false’", Jennifer says, "and my alcoholic father’s memory is considered rational and sane". She does not, after all, remember impossible abuses: "I was at home a few hours after my second session with my therapist, a licensed clinical psychologist working within an established group in a large and respected medical clinic.

"During that second visit to my therapist’s office, I expressed great anxiety about the upcoming holiday visit with my parents. My therapist asked about half way into the session, whether I had ever been sexually abused. I was immediately thrown into a strange state. No one had ever asked me such a question. I responded, ‘no, but….’ I went home and within a few hours I was shaking uncontrollably, overwhelmed with intense and terrible flashbacks". Jennifer asks herself why her parents are believed. "In the end, is it precisely because I was abused that I am to be discredited despite my personal and professional success?"

Pamela Freyd published an open letter defending her husband in Ralph Underwager’s Issues in Child Abuse Accusations in 1991. It was reprinted in Confabulations, a book published a year later. Laced with lubricious sentiment, the book bemoans the "destruction of families" brought on by false child abuse accusations, and maligns "cult-like" support groups and feminists, or "lesbian cults". Executive director Freyd often refers to the feminist groups that have taken up the cause of child abuse survivors as "lesbians", after the bizarre Dr Underwager, who claims,

"these women may be jealous that males are able to love each other, be comrades, friends, be close, intimate".

Pamela Freyd’s account of the family history, Jennifer insists, is patently false. In an electronic message from her father, he openly acknowledges that in his version of the story "fictional elements were deliberately inserted".

"Fictional is rather an astounding choice of words," Jennifer observed at the Ann Arbor Conference. The article written by her parents contends that Jennifer was denied tenure at another university due to a lack of published research. "In fact," Jennifer counters, "I moved to the University of Oregon in 1987, just four years after receiving my Ph.D. to accept a tenured position as associate professor in the psychology department, one of the world’s best psychology departments…. My mother sent the Jane Doe article to my colleagues during my promotion year – that is, the year my case for promotion to full professor was being considered. I was absolutely mortified to learn of this violation of my privacy and this violation of the truth".

Manipulative tactics are another Foundation imprimatur. Lana Alexander, editor of a newsletter for survivors of child sexual abuse, observes that,

"many people view the false memory syndrome theory as a calculated defence strategy developed by perpetrators and the lawyers and expert witnesses who defend them".

A legitimizing barrage of stories in the press has shaped public opinion and warmed the clime for defence attorneys. The concept of false memory serves the same purpose as Holocaust denial. It shapes opinion. Unconscionable crimes are obstructed, the accused is endowed with the status of martyr, the victim is reviled.

The emphasis on image is obvious in "How Do We Know We are Not Representing Paedophiles", an article written for the February 29, 1992 FMS Foundation Newsletter, by Pamela Freyd. In it, she derides the suggestion that many members of the group could be molesters because,

"we are a good-looking bunch of people, greying hair, well dressed, healthy, smiling; just about every person who has attended is someone you would surely find interesting and want to count as a friend".


People forget things. Horrible things. Here at the Foundation someone had a repressed memory, or what would be called a repressed memory, that she had been sexually abused.

– Pamela Freyd, FMS Foundation Founder

Martin Theodore Orne, M.D., Ph.D., emeritus professor of psychiatry and psychology at the University of Pennsylvania, died February 11, 2000 at the age of 72. He was a professor in the School of Medicine for 32 years before becoming emeritus professor in 1996. Born in Vienna, Austria in 1927, Dr. Orne received his M.D. degree from Tufts University Medical School in 1955, with a residency in psychiatry at Massachusetts Mental Health Center, and a Ph.D. in psychology from Harvard University in 1958. Upon coming to Penn in 1964, Professor Orne established and directed the Unit for Experimental Psychiatry, a research laboratory in the School of Medicine that has conducted uninterrupted scientific research for 36 years. [1]

Dr Orne pioneered research into demand characteristics illustrating the weakness of informing participants that they are taking part in a psychology experiment and yet expecting them to act normally. He was also well-known as a researcher in the field of hypnosis.

View the official website for the published papers of Dr. Martin T. Orne at the Department of Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania.



Erickson, B.A. Martin T. Orne, M.D., Ph.D. 1927-2000. Feature Article in The Milton H. Erickson Foundation Newsletter, Spring 2003, 23, 1,4, 25-27.

Martin T Orne, M.D., Ph.D. 1927-2000
By: Betty Alice Erickson, M.S., L.P.C.

Martin T. Orne, M.D., Ph.D. was a highly esteemed contemporary of Milton H. Erickson. They shared a strong personal friendship as well as s a common passion for the advancement and the responsible usage of hypnosis. Orne is probably the most significant researcher that the study of hypnosis has known and we are pleased to feature some of the many facets of this man's extraordinary career.

Martin T. Orne stands as a tall figure in the world of psychiatry, psychotherapy and hypnosis. A pioneer and leader in research, experimentation and in the publication of scientifc investigation, he received multiple honors, awards and international recognition to commemorate his lengthy career as a scientist and researcher. Among them were the Benjamin Franklin Gold Medal from the International Society of Hypnosis, the Seymour Pollack Award from the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law and honorary doctoral degrees from Hofstra University and John F. Kennedy University.

In his many publications, Orne consistently demonstrated a fearless commitment to educate and define. The importance of specific and non-specific factors in both thinking and behavior and the application of those factors were recurrent themes throughout Orne's professional life. He questioned accepted ideas and ordinary thinking, never shied from controversy, and tirelessly sought to bring new understanding to real-world problems for all of mankind.


Son of a surgeon father and a psychiatrist mother, he was born in Vienna, Austria, in 1927. Shortly before World War II, the family emigrated to the United States and settled in New York City. Later they moved to Boston.


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Orne interrupted his college career at 18, to join the U. S. Army. In the military, he was primarily assigned to working in areas providing psychological services where he pursued his interest in hypnosis which had begun as a teenager working in magic shows! After completing his tour with, the military, he returned to college, where he was able to further pursue his interests in hypnosis and hypnotic phenomena, especially age regression.

Education and Pioneer Work with Hypnosis

Virtually everyone with whom he was in contact recognized Orne's intellectual abilities, his tireless drive and his scholarly abilities. His undergraduate advisor at Harvard encouraged him to conduct scientific experiments on hypnotic age regression for his bachelor's honors thesis. Then he urged Orne to publish the findings; "The Mechanisms of Hypnotic Age Regression: An Experimental Study," published in Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology (1951) marks the public beginning of Orne's long held position as a thoughtful observer of the nature of hypnosis.

The study was based on age regression of hypnotized subjects. Orne compared what subjects produced in this age-regressed hypnotic state, with actual material from the person's childhood. This ambitious and technically difficult study demonstrated persuasively, that hypnotic age-regression does not accurately reproduce childhood events -- rather it intermixes adult beliefs of what might have occurred in childhood with fragmentary memories of the past. Orne's work also indicated that hypnotic age regression maintains the psychological functionality of the adult. Hypnosis does not change adult cognition to that of the immature or inexperienced cognitive functioning of the child.

Completing his bachelor's degree in 1948, with high honors, Orne spent a semester as a Rantoul Scholar in Zurich. There he was introduced to Carl Jung, and studied projective s techniques.

Returning to Harvard and completing a Master's degree in psychology, Orne decided he needed a medical education in order to understand more fully all the empirical and scientific aspects of the work that interested him so. He attended Tufts University and earned his medical degree in 1955. He then completed his Ph.D., in Psychology in 1958, from Harvard, concurrently with the first year of his psychiatric residency.

Work with Erickson

In the early 1950's he journeyed to Phoenix, Arizona, where he studied with Milton Erickson.. Erickson was already, a leading figure in hypnosis in the scientific world, and Orne was interested in discovering, in person, what Erickson considered a hypnotic trance and to expand his own clinical expertise with hypnosis. He also wanted to be able to document objective ways an observer could determine whether a person was in a hypnotic trance.

Renting a room next to Erickson's home and office, Orne spent several weeks on this project. He talked extensively with Erickson about hypnosis, sat in on some of Erickson's hypnotic work with patients and, at Erickson's suggestion, spent considerable time working with Erickson's daughter, Betty Alice (author of this article). An experienced subject, comfortable with self-hypnosis, she volunteered to participate in some special exercises. Betty Alice was given the assignment to go in and out of trance during everyday activities and conversations with Orne. Her task was to conceal the intervals of self-hypnosis, by maintaining "normal" behavior while she was in trance.

Orne spent a great deal of time that summer interacting casually in the Erickson household. Orne's focus was on discerning objective characteristics of a trance. In this, Orne and Betty Alice did not discuss whether she had gone into a trance until Orne was ready to leave for the day. Then they would talk about the time they had spent. He had the opportunity to find out when she deliberately induced self-hypnosis, and she, in turn, was able to query him about his perceptions of her trance states. Orne later reported that he valued the time spent with Erickson and his family. He credited Erickson with teaching him to be actively attuned to subtle cues provided by subject volunteers about their inner experiences and to sensitizing Orne to what he would later term the "demand characteristics" of the experimental situation.

Professional Path

Orne’s fascination with the

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observable qualities that defined a trance state was an important research focus throughout his career. There is still considerable debate among hypnosis researchers and scholars today as to the objective measurability of trance states.

During the second year of Orne's residency, he became a lecturer at Harvard Graduate School as well as an instructor at Harvard Medical School. During this time, he also began the Hypnosis Research Project at the Massachusetts Mental Health Center. In 1960, he became a Fulbright Scholar and spent a term at the University of Sydney (Australia). When he returned to the United States, he became a senior research psychiatrist at the Massachusetts Mental Health Center.

In 1961, he founded the Institute for Experimental Psychiatry. He also was chosen as editor of the International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis, which became, under his leadership, one of the 31 core journals in psychology as ranked by the number of scientific citations of the journal.

In 1962, he married Emily Farrell Carota, a graduate of Bennington College. Their professional collaboration continued until Orne's death in February of 2000. One of the many joint professional endeavors for which the Ornes are well known is their work with Ronald Shor in developing the Harvard Group Scale of Hypnotic Susceptibility, published in 1962.

In 1964, Orne received appointments in both the Departments of Psychiatry and Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania. His research laboratory moved to the Institute of Pennsylvania Hospital which also became the home for the Institute for Experimental Psychiatry, with Orne as Executive Director. When that Hospital closed down in 1995, Orne's laboratory moved to the University of Pennsylvania Medical School campus. The research program, initiated by Orne, has continued under the directorship of Dr. David F. Dinges with whom Orne had collaborated in research for over 20 years. In 1996, Orne became Professor Emeritus in the Department of Psychiatry and Adjunct Professor Emeritus in the Department of Psychology.

Research Interests

Orne's life-long interest in the scientific study of subjective experiences led to over 150 publications and many ground-breaking concepts. He saw hypnosis as a way of examining internal personal experiences in a scientific way. He dedicated much of his meticulous research to the study of hypnosis as a phenomenon in itself and as a way of examining internal realities.

Using the stringent rules of scientific research, Orne provided real data in a field marked previously with blurry anecdotal findings. Conclusions he reached, which were later substantiated by further research, were often contrary to the way in which hypnosis had been viewed in the literature. Orne's work, along with that of the Hilgards', spurred interest in, and investigations of, hypnosis, yet even today, it remains a state which is still not fully understood and where further empirical research is still needed.

One of the 100 most cited psychologists, Orne had the arguable honor that concepts he developed and investigated scientifically, became so commonly accepted that they are now often referred to without notation of source (e.g., demand characteristics, trance logic, etc.).

Orne's definition of hypnosis as a marked alteration or even a distortion of perception, memory, or mood, emphasized the experiential aspects of hypnosis as they are influenced by the situation, the ecology, and changes in usual subjective awareness. He studied hypnosis and hypnotic trance as specific events taking place in a particular context between particular individuals.

Orne's emphasis on the context and the demand characteristics of the experimental situation guided all of his research studies. He never varied from the perspective that the social context of the experimental setting determined the ecological validity of the experimental findings. He felt that too often, in human research up through the 1950's, volunteer subjects were treated, in experiments, as though they could simply be exposed to specific experimental procedures as if they were the inanimate objects of physics experiments. He reacted against the idea of exposing subjects to a condition and simply recording the behavioral response. He felt strongly that the objective behavior could be analyzed only after taking into account its congruence with the individual's subjective experience. He viewed experimental subjects, first and foremost, as thinking, sentient beings. Their views of the situation, and the experimenter's cues and instructions, had to be taken into account in order to preserve the integrity of the findings of any psychology experiment. To this end, he never planned any experiment without including, in its design, a postexperimental inquiry in which an experienced experimenter who had not previously been part of the experiment, conducted an in-depth interview with the volunteer subject. The purpose of the procedure was to understand the subject's thoughts and hypotheses about the study in a comfortable setting where the main experimenter was not present and the subject could be encouraged to be forthright.

Orne felt experimental work in hypnosis, as well as in other fields, had to deal with separating effects produced by the experimental setting from those produced by the variable under investigation. This is a difficult contextual bind to overcome but Orne worked systematically throughout his life to isolate the experimenter/experimental effects in any research studies he undertook.

Part of his doctoral dissertation presented the idea of a "simulator" design. In this, subjects who had been tested and were not able to enter hypnosis, were asked to participate in a hypnosis experiment along with subjects who were capable of entering deep hypnosis. The main experimenter was blind as to which subjects were actually in hypnosis and which were simply responding to the cues in the situation. Being blind as to status, the main hypnotist-experimenter treated all subjects in the same manner. Such a design allows separation of the cues perceived in the situation from the subjective experience of hypnosis itself.

The experimenters working with both the hypnotized and the non-hypnotized-simulating subjects were intentionally unaware of which peo-

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ple were in a trance and which people were merely pretending to be in a trance. This creates, essentially, two different experiments -- one in which simulators attempt to convince the main experimenter that they are responding to the hypnotic suggestions (or he will stop the experiment) and a second experiment in which deeply hypnotized subjects actually are responding to the suggestions administered -- while the hypnotist is unaware of the status of any subject. Similarities and differences in the performances of "simulators" versus "reals" can be analyzed to determine which behaviors are likely due to the cues from the experimental setting and which are true hypnotic phenomena.

Over the years, Orne and long-time colleague and collaborator F. J. Evans refined this paradigm. One of the outcomes of this finely tuned work was a classic experiment about anti-social behaviors. Several published studies had shown that anti-social behaviors could be elicited in subjects by suggestions administered during hypnosis. However, Orne and Evans demonstrated that responding to suggestions to perform anti-social acts had nothing to do with being hypnotized in that unhypnotized subjects simulating hypnosis carried out the anti-social acts as frequently as did the hypnotized subjects. The anti-social behavior was produced not by hypnotic suggestions, but by the environment of the experiment itself. Because subjects trusted the experimenter and the experimental setting, they recognized that, in such a situation, harm would not occur to them or to others. That is, while subjects complied with the suggestion to throw acid at a research assistant, that behavior was not promoted by hypnosis but rather by the perception of being in a safe university setting.

Another experiment, results of which have now also passed into the realm of common knowledge, showed scientifically that hypnotized subjects do not surpass bounds of normal abilities. Further, with appropriate motivation, unhypnotized subjects can be put across two chairs and sat on, as well as lift unusually heavy weights.

Few of today's practitioners involved in hypnosis realize these scientifically supported tenets of modern hypnosis came from the work of Orne and his colleagues. They are so widely accepted that it's as though the ideas "have always been known."

Orne's research interests spanned not only the investigation of hypnosis but also psychophysiology. He studied responses to painful stimuli following suggestions for hypnotic analgesia. One experiment done with Evans and Thomas McGlashan on ischemic muscle pain showed that hypnotic analgesia was very real and its effects could not simply be attributed to a placebo effect. Although there was already some anecdotal evidence to show this, Orne knew research must be the foundation upon which serious clinical work is based.

Orne also studied the mechanisms and effects of EEG biofeedback training. He worked with David Dinges for more than two decades investigating the differing effects of long and short periods of sleep. Their research documented the positive effects of short naps -- prophylactic or "power" napping -- on performance, in an era when naps were viewed as simply a waste of time.

Much of Orne's research began as an offshoot of his interest in ways to counteract stress and fatigue. Part of those studies led to a project investigating self-hypnosis as a tool to manage both stress and pain in patients with sickle cell anemia. This program was particularly successful with children with sickle cell disease who otherwise suffered the agony of recurrent crisis pain.

Encyclopaedia Britannica

He and. A. Gordon Hammer wrote a lengthy article about hypnosis for the 15th edition (1974) of the Encyclopaedia Britannica. In it, they defined hypnosis, recounted its history, described a typical induction and discussed neural changes that were purported to occur in hypnosis. They also covered aspects of pain management and indicated that pain could be reduced by a hypnotic trance and by self-hypnosis in suitable subjects. Pain control was achieved not only by the reduction of fear and lessening of anticipation during appropriate hypnotic suggestions, but also, in some instances, by the experience of a negative perceptual hallucination of no pain. They also recognized that authoritarian methods of hypnosis, once the accepted norm, were no longer considered to be an effective method for therapeutic work.

Cooperation and the mutual achieving of a productive goal by both the hypnotist and the subject were the more usual and more effective methods of treatment.

Hypnotic age regression was also discussed. Orne and Hammer wrote that even when subjects appear to be reliving events that occurred in childhood, analysis of the memories recalled and of the cognitive developmental level is that which is available to the adult rather than to the child. They noted that many controlled studies support this perspective.

They recognized, however, that because subjects, in hypnosis, are highly suggestible, gaps in memory are often filled in with vivid details but that, due to lowered critical judgment in hypnosis, the accuracy of memories suffers. Subjects, as well as the hypnotist, then become unable to distinguish fact from fiction without outside independent verification.

In this overview for the Encyclopaedia, Orne and Hammer were careful to indicate what was proven and what was merely surmised. This information, and the results of scientific experimentation concerning hypnosis were made available to a wide and heterogeneous audience.

Forensic Work

Orne's insistence on verifiable controlled scientific experiments led some to conclude that he was an opponent of hypnosis and didn't believe anecdotal reports of results obtained in trance states. A more careful reading of his works, however, indicates Orne wanted merely scientific verification of anecdotal claims. He was a true scientist; he was neither for nor against any particular result or conclusion. He held that it was irresponsible to build diagnostic procedures and clinical interventions upon information that had not proven itself under the scrutiny of clear scientific experiments and thinking.

He helped develop the field of forensic hypnosis and ways to determine physiological indicators of deception. Early on, he recognized hypnosis is not a reliable way to find truth. Subjects can easily and deliberately lie convincingly under hypnosis. Even cooperative subjects not deliberately attempting to lie often report distorted versions of events in or after hypnosis. Memories become a conglomeration of actual accurate memories and a "filling in of gaps."

Distortions can be accepted by the subject as the "true and complete" memory of the original event and then become part of the overall memory bank of the person. Those memories, when again recalled, take on a stronger subjective component and become even more convincing to the subject and to observers because the subject is so confident of the accuracy, having "seen" the event recently because of hypnosis.

Orne's expertise and experimentally supported stances as well as his dual roles as researcher and clinician gave credence to his positions. His 1979 paper, "On the Use and Misuse of Hypnosis, in Court" published in The International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis, gave a framework for the forensic uses of hypnosis and began a highly charged discussion about hypnotically "recovered" memories.

Orne's position was always that to assure the accuracy of a given memory, independent corroboration was required. Even in the usual waking state, most people have had the experience of being certain of a particular memory and then finding through pictures, through incontrovertible dates, or through some other factual means that a recollection is wrong. Memories retrieved by hypnosis, "recovered memories," can be even more misleading. Not only is hypnosis a suggestible state, but subjects tend to place a great deal of reliance upon the accuracy of memories that they have retrieved in a trance state. In hypnosis, some subjects "relive" the event so vividly that they are totally convinced that "hypnotic reliving" is what actually occurred originally. It was this aspect of hypnosis that made it a serious problem for testimony in court after witnesses had been hypnotized to "refresh" recall.

Since over 4,000 police officers had been trained during the 1970's to perform "forensic hypnosis" with bystanders who may (or may not) have been in a position to view a particular crime, the number of court cases where someone who had been hypnotized to "refresh" recall, and subsequently testify, escalated during the late 1970's and 1980's. If an issue was raised, for instance, by the defense, about the witness having been hypnotized, the prosecution's argument in court, was typically that hypnosis had been used, just as notes made at the time of the event, or a diary, were allowed to be used to "refresh" one's recall. However, pre-

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sumably, over time, the notes or diary entries had not changed from those recorded originally. Hypnosis is quite different in that just as the adult does not suddenly acquire the perception and schemata of a child when the adult is age-regressed, so also a bystander who is hypnotized to recall more fully does not suddenly gain access to a window of the actual original event. Rather than refreshing memory, Orne pointed out that hypnosis creates a memory, often so vivid, that it induces complete confidence in details which previously were vague and fragmentary (if they existed at all).

The seriousness of the problem, for testimony in court, in determining. the "truth of the matter," becomes clear when one considers an extreme case which actually occurred such as a hypnotist telling a witness, in hypnosis, to "just lift the mask" of the perpetrator so as to identify the face -- even, though the mask was never removed during the crime!

Orne and colleagues devised several experiments to test accuracy of recall in trance. The premise that a hypnotic trance could be unduly suggestive and could lead witnesses to create memories they subsequently sincerely believed was upheld in these experiments. His papers, as well as much other scientific research further substantiating these conclusions, have been cited numerous times by state courts as well as by the United States Supreme Court.

During this time, the American Medical Association appointed Orne head of a committee to evaluate the scientific data regarding the accuracy of memories retrieved through the use of hypnosis to refresh recall. The committee's report, published in JAMA, in 1985, concluded that memories retrieved in hypnosis were a mixture of accurate and inaccurate information where neither the hypnotist nor subject nor observer could tell which was which. While in his 1979 IJCEH paper, Orne had proposed guidelines for the use forensic hypnosis, which at the time he thought were straightforward, by 1984, he had concluded that the danger of the misuse of hypnosis for retrieving memories was so great that he could no longer support the use of hypnosis to refresh memories unless there was no chance that the witness might later need to testify in court. Orne therefore proposed that the use of hypnosis to enhance memories be restricted to investigative purposes only. In other words, in an important case, where it was critical to have additional clues, so long as the authorities, law enforcement, and the witnesses were clear that, after hypnosis had "refreshed recall," testimony in court was not possible, in those investigative cases, hypnosis could proceed, according to the proposed guidelines, so long as any information retrieved through hypnosis could later be corroborated by independent physical evidence.

His expertise and research in hypnosis and related states brought Orne to national attention. He became an expert witness in a number of criminal cases. He testified in the high profile Patricia Hearst case as to the validity of the defense's claim of coercive persuasion or what is commonly known as "brain washing." Hearst had been kidnapped by the Symbionese Liberation Army (SLA) and later stood trial for bank robbery. Orne worked extensively with her trying to determine what happened during her nineteen months with the SLA. After his comprehensive psychological examination, he concluded she was telling the truth -- that she was kidnapped and that any apparent cooperation on her part with the SLA was due to coercive persuasion.

Perhaps most famous, however, was his work evaluating the psychological profile of Kenneth Bianchi who was a serial killer in Southern California known as the "Hillside Strangler."

After a mental evaluation, where hypnosis was used, Bianchi claimed he was a multiple personality and, as such, was not responsible for the killings. The torture and killings had been done, he said, by another personality. This claim was upheld by mental health experts for the defense who believed they were able to access this alter personality through hypnosis.

After having Bianchi undergo a series of tests, Orne concluded that Bianchi was consciously simulating hypnosis. For instance, in Orne's videotaped clinical examination, Bianchi was asked, when he said he was under hypnosis, to hallucinate his attorney. He then claimed he could see his attorney and engaged in conversation with the hallucinated attorney. Orne then had the attorney actually enter the room. Bianchi's flustered reaction to the double hallucination paradigm and his statement that one of the "two" attorneys had vanished, contributed to Orne's evaluation that Bianchi was faking hypnosis. Orne's clinical assessment led Bianchi to plead guilty.

Orne's work with this serial murderer was recorded in an award-winning documentary called "The Mind of a Murderer," filmed by the B.B.C. and played on Frontline. The film remains a classic in forensic psychological and hypnotic work.

Patient Advocacy

As though his work as a clinician, experimenter, author, editor, and professor were not enough, Orne championed patients' rights. In the 1950's Anne Sexton, then a housewife and mother, became his patient. As part of her therapy, Orne encouraged her to put her feelings in writing and eventually to take courses and write poetry. Sexton was subject to serious depressive episodes and had considerable difficulty recalling what had occurred in previous therapy sessions, especially ones where progress was made. To aid her memory, Orne began taping all her sessions and Sexton listened to the last session just before entering the next so that she could better remember the therapy and gain continuity. Sexton went on to write and teach poetry, publishing her first book in 1959, and going on to eventually be awarded the Pulitzer Prize.

When Orne moved to the University of Pennsylvania in 1964, she was referred to, and saw, a new therapist and later, two others. In 1974, unfortunately, Sexton committed suicide.

Fifteen years after her death, and with the explicit permission of Sexton's daughter who was also her literary executor, Orne released the therapy tapes to a professor who was chosen by the literary executor to write a biography of Sexton. She had left the therapy tapes with Orne, even though he offered them to her before his move, and Sexton asked only that he use them to help others. Nevertheless, criticism resulted from those who believed that this release of the tapes violated guidelines stating that medical records not be made public without explicit written permission of the patient. The guideline for written permission was dated in 1978, four years after Sexton's death.

Orne defended the right of the patient to have this type of material released even posthumously. He stated that, "Sharing her most intimate thoughts and feelings for the benefit of others was not only her expressed and enacted desire, but the purpose for which she lived." In 1962, Sexton had written a poem in which she said, "But you, my doctor, my enthusiast, ... you promised me another world to tell me who I was." It was this "other world" Sexton wished to share with others who were troubled in order to give them hope.

Eventually Orne's position was upheld by legal experts, ethical scholars and the American Psychiatric Association. The biography, which was published in 1991, was richer for the inclusion of Sexton's thoughts and her struggles to overcome depression.


Part of Orne's legacy is his stimulation of critical thinking, his fearlessness in stating his positions and his inquiries into and dedication to scientific objective data. He mentored and inspired students at all levels of education.

In his later years, Orne's most fervent hope was that the Unit for Experimental Psychiatry research laboratory at the University of Pennsylvania Medical School, under the leadership of his friend and colleague, Dr. David Dinges, be able to carry on the research program Martin initiated. So far it has.

In addition to contributing to the scientific understanding of the nature of hypnosis, and related states, the use of his research to continue and further scientific progress was Orne's true legacy.

At the memorial service for Orne, one of the speakers was his grandnephew, Douglas Rubinson, who has since graduated from Yale and gone on to the M.D.- Ph.D. program at Harvard where he is pursuing research on the immune system -- work that Orne would have so enjoyed discussing with him. Rubinson remembered a conversation he once had with his granduncle. "Martin explained to me that the key to be a successful scientist is neither being the hardest worker nor the most intelligent. The key is to think critically and question everything. That just because you read something in a textbook doesn't make it true. And that even as an undergraduate, I should have the courage to challenge the rules and test my ideas."

The preceding paper is a reproduction of the following article (Erickson, B.A. Martin T. Orne, M.D., Ph.D. 1927-2000. Feature Article in The Milton H. Erickson Foundation Newsletter, Spring 2003, 23, 1,4, 25-27.) published by The Milton H. Erickson Foundation, Inc. ( It is reproduced here with the kind permission of The Milton H. Erickson Foundation, Inc.


Zoompad said...

Dear Reader
One thing which I find hard to accept is to acknowledge the sometimes slow pace
of progress. In an age of phenomenally high speeds of data transmission we have
all become used to the expectation of instant results but in actual fact the reality
is different.
It has taken the BFMS, with the help of its members, 14 years to write and
publish its first book of powerful case histories which expose the horror of being
caught up in the false memory saga. We report on the May book launch in the
House of Lords. Sales are building steadily; copies are available from Amazon
and all good bookstores. After early hiccups we are even assured that
Waterstones bookshops can supply the book. We now need members within reach
of a local branch to encourage them to stock it. We know that the book is
reaching far off horizons as we have been supplying repeat orders to a bookseller
in New Zealand.


Zoompad said...


PRESS RELEASE - British False Memory Syndrome

File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat - Quick View
The book, Fractured Families, is to be launched at the House of Lords, ... Madeline Greenhalgh, Director of BFMS, said: 'With the stigma attached to ...

Bradford on Avon, Wiltshire, BA15 1NF Tel: 01225 868682 Fax: 01225 862251 Email:
Website: The British False Memory Society Registered Charity No: 1040683
Serving People and Professionals
in Contested Allegations of Abuse
Not for publication before 11 am Tuesday May 15, 2007
Families Speak Out Against Recovered ‘Memory’
Picture this: It’s a normal day. You’re opening the post. Your 30 year-old daughter has sent you
a letter saying she's reporting you to the police for abusing her sexually when she was a child.
She says she has recently recovered memories that you did this to her and that you told her to
keep it quiet. In shock, you hand the letter to your wife and wait for her to react. In a moment,
your life, as you know it, is shattered.
That is a real story and typical of thousands of others in the UK.
Parents falsely accused of sexual abuse by their now adult children are bravely speaking out
about their heartbreak through a book which puts their accounts into the public domain for the
first time.
The book, Fractured Families, is to be launched at the House of Lords, 11 am to 12.30 pm
Tuesday May 15th. It charts the tragic stories of how adults have become estranged from loving
It describes the damage done by well-meaning healthcare professionals, counsellors and
therapists and by irresponsible self-help literature.
Some of the stories have a happier ending, with the accusers retracting their accusations and
beginning a process of reconciliation.
Sixteen parents have decided to break the silence and stigma of allegations of historic child
sexual abuse. They represent thousands of families known to the British False Memory Society,
and perhaps many more that remain isolated in their pain.
Shattered by these horrifying accusations and understandably afraid of the stigma they bring,
parents keep quiet and rarely speak out - until now.
Professor Larry Weiskrantz, Emeritus Professor of Psychology at Oxford University has
contributed an article to Fractured Families that explores the science behind false memories.
He says: ‘False memories can play a dangerous role in witness testimony and other claims for
the recall of non-existent or seriously distorted events. The most serious examples, perhaps, are
accusations of severe sexual abuse that never occurred, although fervently believed by the

Zoompad said...

Madeline Greenhalgh, Director of BFMS, said: ‘With the stigma attached to allegations of
sexual assault, it’s not surprising that families decide they cannot speak out in their own defence.
‘This is why Fractured Families is so important. It gives a voice to the falsely accused and the
opportunity for them to provide an insight into the heartbreak caused by such shocking
‘We also hope that the book, launched today on the UN’s Day of the Family, will raise the
profile of the issue with academics and clinicians, child protection workers, social workers and
everyone in the criminal justice world, especially lawyers and the police.’
- Ends -
Notes to Editors
For further information and to arrange interviews, please contact:
Alison Eden, Press Officer, Tel: 07802 425482
Madeline Greenhalgh, Director, Tel: 01225 868682
Email: /
Fractured Families will be launched at the Attlee Room, House of Lords on Tuesday May 15. The event will
run from 11 am to 12.30 pm. You can confirm your attendance with the BFMS by emailing or calling Alison
or Madeline using the numbers above. When you have confirmed, we will send you a printed invite.
Please note that for security reasons it is essential that you confirm your attendance with us in advance and by
noon on Friday May 11th at the very latest. Security requirements at the House of Lords dictate that we must
notify them in advance of guests expected as entrance will only be granted to people on the list who present
their original invitation.
Since it was founded in 1993 the British False Memory Society has had contact with over 2000 people
affected by false allegations by their now adult children who have ‘discovered’ memories of sexual abuse in
The society continues to get calls daily from parents who are devastated that they could be accused of such a
heinous crime by a loved one.
The charity, which has a Scientific and Professional Advisory Board comprising respected psychiatrists and
psychologists (see web-site), works to improve understanding of false memory by encouraging, sponsoring,
conducting and publishing academic and professional research.
The psychological concept underlying the accusations is based on the claim that the brain 'blocks out' severe
childhood trauma as a mechanism to enable the mind to cope. While such a mechanism for traumatic amnesia
has been discredited by psychiatrists, the concept of buried trauma has gripped the public imagination and
been the subject of many films and novels. Belief persists that it is possible to recover 'blocked out', buried
memories, bringing into consciousness a history of trauma for which the individual was previously unaware.
'Recovered memory' can be brought about through the ministrations of authoritative figures such as therapists
and psychiatrists, or through reading self-help literature or concentrated focus upon 'what might have been'. In
an insidious process, which might take years, the patient comes to believe that all his or her troubles stem from
this newly remembered abuse.
- Ends -

Zoompad said...

Madeline Greenhalgh, Director of BFMS!

The same woman who was involved in the cover up of the Haut de la Garenne child abuse. The RTS award to the dodgy journalism that discredited the policemen who investigated the HDLG child abuse!

Zoompad said...

I have seen that womans name linked to that society, but I cant find the link, I will though

Zoompad said...

Madeline Greenhalgh
Director at BFMS

Bath, United Kingdom
Nonprofit Organization Management
Madeline Greenhalgh's Overview
Current Director at BFMS
Past Administrator at BFMS
Co-ordinator at International Disability Education and Awareness (IDEA)
Connections 14 connections
WebsitesCompany Website

Madeline Greenhalgh's Experience
Director BFMS
1998 – Present (14 years)

Administrator BFMS
October 1993 – 1997 (4 years)

Co-ordinator International Disability Education and Awareness (IDEA)
1981 – 1989 (8 years)

Madeline Greenhalgh's Additional Information
Websites:•Company Website
Interests:Understanding false memory, how it occurs, managing the consequences for all concerned and finding paths to lessen the risks, charity governance.

Zoompad said...

Management of the BFMS
Established by Trust Deed, the BFMS is a Registered Charity, No. 1040683. The Society is also registered under the Data Protection Act.

Management and Administration
Madeline Greenhalgh, Director
Sue Ryder, Administrator
Roger Scotford, Consultant