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Emotion and Memory: the protective functions of semantic knowledge on memory errors

Kahraman, Özgür (2008)
Department of Psychology
Abstract
The present study aimed to investigate if celebrity (knowledge/semantic memory) can have protective functions against memory errors. We examined if famous faces, based on an interaction of semantic and episodic memory can lead to a deeper encoding, and if attractive faces, based on familiarity can lead to more confusion. Participants' ability to distinguish between studied and nonstudied faces in the test phase was measured using a continuous recognition test. As predicted, the analysis of old-new discrimination confirmed a deeper encoding for famous faces, and a more accurate recollection of these faces, compared to unfamous faces. Moreover, temporal context confusion increased for unfamous faces, in contrast to famous faces, which... (More)
The present study aimed to investigate if celebrity (knowledge/semantic memory) can have protective functions against memory errors. We examined if famous faces, based on an interaction of semantic and episodic memory can lead to a deeper encoding, and if attractive faces, based on familiarity can lead to more confusion. Participants' ability to distinguish between studied and nonstudied faces in the test phase was measured using a continuous recognition test. As predicted, the analysis of old-new discrimination confirmed a deeper encoding for famous faces, and a more accurate recollection of these faces, compared to unfamous faces. Moreover, temporal context confusion increased for unfamous faces, in contrast to famous faces, which indicated that participants made more memory errors for unfamous faces. No effect involving attractiveness was found in the analyses of old-new discrimination and temporal context confusion. Taken together, the findings of the present study fail to support the idea that familiarity may be induced by the positive emotion conveyed by attractive faces and that this leads to greater memory confusion. However, they do support the proposal that prior knowledge improves episodic memory and may protect against memory confusion. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
@misc{1317527,
  abstract     = {The present study aimed to investigate if celebrity (knowledge/semantic memory) can have protective functions against memory errors. We examined if famous faces, based on an interaction of semantic and episodic memory can lead to a deeper encoding, and if attractive faces, based on familiarity can lead to more confusion. Participants' ability to distinguish between studied and nonstudied faces in the test phase was measured using a continuous recognition test. As predicted, the analysis of old-new discrimination confirmed a deeper encoding for famous faces, and a more accurate recollection of these faces, compared to unfamous faces. Moreover, temporal context confusion increased for unfamous faces, in contrast to famous faces, which indicated that participants made more memory errors for unfamous faces. No effect involving attractiveness was found in the analyses of old-new discrimination and temporal context confusion. Taken together, the findings of the present study fail to support the idea that familiarity may be induced by the positive emotion conveyed by attractive faces and that this leads to greater memory confusion. However, they do support the proposal that prior knowledge improves episodic memory and may protect against memory confusion.},
  author       = {Kahraman, Özgür},
  keyword      = {Memory errors,Temporal context confusion,Emotion,Episodic memory,Neurology, neuropsychology, neurophysiology,Neurologi, neuropsykologi, neurofysiologi,Psychology,Psykologi},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Emotion and Memory: the protective functions of semantic knowledge on memory errors},
  year         = {2008},
}