Recently a news story broke that scientists had indeed discovered fetal memory. The study released from the Netherlands indicates that babies at 30 weeks gestation can successfully be conditioned by a "vibroacoustic" sound repeated at ten-minute intervals. By the time the babies reach 34 weeks gestation, they can remember a sound for up to four weeks.
They way they account for the babies "remembering" the sound is a process called habituation. Produce a new sound for an uninitiated baby and they give a startled reaction. Continue to produce the same sound, or stimuli, over a period of time and the baby will become conditioned to it through memory. Scientists were able to determine both long-term and short-term memory in the babies by repeating this process over a several week period with 93 pregnant women.
The Netherlands study was not the first to attempt to prove fetal memory. In the 1930s, WS Ray attempted to condition a baby to sounds heard within the womb. It was not technically a study, as there was only one subject and no findings reported. Ray went on to claim success though, because he felt the baby was properly conditioned.
In 1948, DK Spelt went on to do a similar experiment with several subjects. in the mid-1970s and early 1980s, more experiments, this time conducted with music, were done. Each one had the same successful results - the babies in the womb were habituated to the stimuli and even remembered it after birth.
It would appear that after a century of research by scientists, we can conclude that babies do have a memory in the womb. Thanks to the researchers who have tirelessly studied fetal reactions over the years, we have yet another reason to believe that life does begin at conception.
Make an effort to support those in the scientific community researching fetal viability and other important pro-life issues by donating to the Life Issues Institute, which supports pro-life science, research, and "back to basics" education to prove the existence of life at conception.