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Sample records for autobiographical happy events

  1. How Do We Remember Happy Life Events? A Comparison Between Eudaimonic and Hedonic Autobiographical Memories.

    PubMed

    Sotgiu, Igor

    2016-08-17

    Although positive events occur frequently in people's lives, autobiographical memory for happy events has received only marginal attention within the psychology literature. This study followed a between-subjects design to examine the similarities and differences between eudaimonic and hedonic happy memories. Two groups of undergraduates provided narratives of personally experienced eudaimonic and hedonic events, respectively. They also completed questionnaires assessing the memory characteristics of recalled events and the centrality of such events for the individual's identity and life story. In addition, the participants' levels of well-being were assessed. The content analysis of narratives revealed that eudaimonic memories mostly referred to transitional life events; by contrast, the most reported hedonic memories referred to close relationship experiences. Eudaimonic and hedonic recollections were further compared on quantitative measures of memory characteristics, statistically controlling for retention interval and event centrality. Results showed that eudaimonic memories involved more intense feelings of pride and were socially shared more frequently than hedonic memories. However, the two memory types were similar with respect to a number of features (e.g., sensory details). It is argued that participants remembering eudaimonic events were more influenced by cultural life scripts. Implications of the findings for the measurement of psychological well-being are also discussed. PMID:27043474

  2. The neural correlates of happiness: A review of PET and fMRI studies using autobiographical recall methods.

    PubMed

    Suardi, Angelo; Sotgiu, Igor; Costa, Tommaso; Cauda, Franco; Rusconi, Maria

    2016-06-01

    Although very difficult to define, happiness is becoming a core concept within contemporary psychology and affective neuroscience. In the last two decades, the increased use of neuroimaging techniques has facilitated empirical study of the neural correlates of happiness. This area of research utilizes procedures that induce positive emotion and mood, and autobiographical recall is one of the most widely used and effective approaches. In this article, we review eight positron emission tomography and seven functional magnetic resonance imaging studies that have investigated happiness by using autobiographical recall to induce emotion. Regardless of the neuroimaging technique used, the studies conducted so far have shown that remembering happy events is primarily associated with the activation of many areas, including anterior cingulate cortex, prefrontal cortex, and insula. Importantly, these areas are also found to be connected with other basic emotions, such as sadness and anger. In the conclusion, we integrate these findings, discussing important limitations of the extant literature and suggesting new research directions. PMID:26912269

  3. [Retelling harsh days as being happy: its effects on autobiographical memories].

    PubMed

    Ikeda, Kazuhiro; Nihei, Yoshiaki

    2009-02-01

    This study examined the effects of biased retelling by having participants retell negative experiences as positive autobiographical memories. Undergraduates in the biased-retelling condition (N = 21) retold their experiences preparing for university entrance examinations as "happy", while undergraduates in the recalling (control) condition (N = 23) again narrated their actual experiences. Then both groups were asked to recall their initial experience. Their initial memories were compared to those after the biased retellings or repeated narrations. In the recall of the autobiographical memories after the biased retellings, the results showed significantly increased positive emotional words and decreased negative emotional words. The emotional values of the central and peripheral concepts of the harsh experiences changed in the direction of "happy" in the biased retelling condition compared to the repeated recalling condition. Furthermore, the changes in the emotional values were more prominent in the central concepts of undergraduates' experiences. PMID:19348162

  4. Children's Long-Term Memory for Autobiographical Events.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Peterson, Carole

    2002-01-01

    Traces the origins of children's autobiographical memories, discussing research on infantile amnesia and young children's memory skills. Focuses on studies of children's long-term memory for autobiographical events that investigate delays of 1-2 years and delays of 4 years or more. Reports that a few studies have documented remarkably robust…

  5. Children's Temporal Judgments for Autobiographical Past and Future Events

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hudson, Judith A.; Mayhew, Estelle M. Y.

    2011-01-01

    We compared the performance of twenty 5-7-year-olds on two spatial-temporal judgment tasks. In a semantic task, children located temporal distances from today that were described using conventional, temporal terms on a spatial timeline. In an autobiographical task, children judged temporal distances on the same spatial timeline for events that…

  6. Overgeneral Autobiographical Memory and Traumatic Events: An Evaluative Review

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moore, Sally A.; Zoellner, Lori A.

    2007-01-01

    Does trauma exposure impair retrieval of autobiographical memories? Many theorists have suggested that the reduced ability to access specific memories of life events, termed overgenerality, is a protective mechanism helping attenuate painful emotions associated with trauma. The authors addressed this question by reviewing 24 studies that assessed…

  7. Childhood traumatic events and adolescent overgeneral autobiographical memory: Findings in a UK cohort

    PubMed Central

    Crane, Catherine; Heron, Jon; Gunnell, David; Lewis, Glyn; Evans, Jonathan; Williams, J. Mark G.

    2014-01-01

    Background Overgeneral autobiographical memory has repeatedly been identified as a risk factor for adolescent and adult psychopathology but the factors that cause such over-generality remain unclear. This study examined the association between childhood exposure to traumatic events and early adolescent overgeneral autobiographical memory in a large population sample. Methods Thirteen-year-olds, n = 5,792, participating in an ongoing longitudinal cohort study (ALSPAC) completed a written version of the Autobiographical Memory Test. Performance on this task was examined in relation to experience of traumatic events, using data recorded by caregivers close to the time of exposure. Results Results indicated that experiencing a severe event in middle childhood increased the likelihood of an adolescent falling into the lowest quartile for autobiographical memory specificity (retrieving 0 or 1 specific memory) at age 13 by approximately 60%. The association persisted after controlling for a range of potential socio-demographic confounders. Limitations Data on the traumatic event exposures was limited by the relatively restricted range of traumas examined, and the lack of contextual details surrounding both the traumatic event exposures themselves and the severity of children's post-traumatic stress reactions. Conclusions This is the largest study to date of the association between childhood trauma exposure and overgeneral autobiographical memory in adolescence. Findings suggest a modest association between exposure to traumatic events and later overgeneral autobiographical memory, a psychological variable that has been linked to vulnerability to clinical depression. PMID:24657714

  8. Narration and Vividness as Measures of Event-Specificity in Autobiographical Memory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nelson, Kristin L.; Moskovitz, Damian J.; Steiner, Hans

    2008-01-01

    The event specificity of autobiographical memories refers to the degree to which retold memories include specific details about a unique personal experience from a variety of representational systems supported by different brain areas. This article proposes 2 text measures as indicators of event specificity: (a) a measure of temporal sequence in…

  9. Memories for emotional autobiographical events following unilateral damage to medial temporal lobe.

    PubMed

    Buchanan, Tony W; Tranel, Daniel; Adolphs, Ralph

    2006-01-01

    Abnormalities of both memory and emotion have been reported in patients with unilateral damage to the anteromedial temporal lobe, probably reflecting the functions of the amygdala and hippocampus in these processes. Emotion and memory are also known to interact: emotional experiences often leave remarkably durable autobiographical memories. To explore this interaction, and to extend prior studies to the domain of autobiographical memory, we investigated the recollection of real-life emotional events in patients with unilateral damage to the anteromedial temporal lobe. Twenty-three patients who had undergone unilateral temporal lobectomy for the treatment of epilepsy (12 left, 11 right) and 20 healthy comparison participants completed an emotional autobiographical memory test. Participants were asked to recollect their five most emotional memories from any time in their lives and then they completed a word-cued autobiographical memory task. Participants dated each memory and gave ratings on scales of pleasantness, intensity, significance, novelty, vividness and frequency of rehearsal. Left temporal lobectomy (LTL) and healthy comparison groups generated similar numbers of pleasant and unpleasant memories, whereas the right temporal lobectomy (RTL) group produced significantly fewer memories of unpleasant events (P < 0.01). When memories were further categorized according to pleasantness and intensity, the RTL group produced significantly fewer unpleasant/high intensity memories than the other groups (P < 0.01). All groups reported more memories from between the ages of 10 and 30 (the so-called autobiographical memory 'bump'). The results demonstrate a positive bias in the recollection of autobiographical memory following right-sided anteromedial temporal damage. This finding is consistent with the notion that the right, but not the left, anteromedial temporal lobe is involved in the retrieval of negatively valenced, high-intensity memories. PMID:16291807

  10. Becoming a better person: temporal remoteness biases autobiographical memories for moral events

    PubMed Central

    Escobedo, Jessica R.; Adolphs, Ralph

    2010-01-01

    Our autobiographical self depends on the differential recollection of our personal past, notably including memories of morally laden events. While both emotion and temporal recency are well known to influence memory, very little is known about how we remember moral events, and in particular about the distribution in time of memories for events that were blameworthy or praiseworthy. To investigate this issue in detail, we collected a novel database of 758 confidential, autobiographical narratives for personal moral events from 100 well-characterized healthy adults. Negatively valenced moral memories were significantly more remote than positively valenced memories, both as measured by the valence of the cue word that evoked the memory as well as by the content of the memory itself. The effect was independent of chronological age, ethnicity, gender, or personality, arguing for a general emotional bias in how we construct our moral autobiography. PMID:20677868

  11. A Comparison of Dimensional Models of Emotion: Evidence from Emotions, Prototypical Events, Autobiographical Memories, and Words

    PubMed Central

    Rubin, David C.; Talarico, Jennifer M.

    2009-01-01

    The intensity and valence of 30 emotion terms, 30 events typical of those emotions, and 30 autobiographical memories cued by those emotions were each rated by different groups of 40 undergraduates. A vector model gave a consistently better account of the data than a circumplex model, both overall and in the absence of high intensity, neutral valence stimuli. The Positive Activation - Negative Activation (PANA) model could be tested at high levels of activation, where it is identical to the vector model. The results replicated when ratings of arousal were used instead of ratings of intensity for the events and autobiographical memories. A reanalysis of word norms gave further support for the vector and PANA models by demonstrating that neutral valence, high arousal ratings resulted from the averaging of individual positive and negative valence ratings. Thus, compared to a circumplex model, vector and PANA models provided overall better fits. PMID:19691001

  12. The influence of gender and gender typicality on autobiographical memory across event types and age groups.

    PubMed

    Grysman, Azriel; Fivush, Robyn; Merrill, Natalie A; Graci, Matthew

    2016-08-01

    Gender differences in autobiographical memory emerge in some data collection paradigms and not others. The present study included an extensive analysis of gender differences in autobiographical narratives. Data were collected from 196 participants, evenly split by gender and by age group (emerging adults, ages 18-29, and young adults, ages 30-40). Each participant reported four narratives, including an event that had occurred in the last 2 years, a high point, a low point, and a self-defining memory. Additionally, all participants completed self-report measures of masculine and feminine gender typicality. The narratives were coded along six dimensions-namely coherence, connectedness, agency, affect, factual elaboration, and interpretive elaboration. The results indicated that females expressed more affect, connection, and factual elaboration than males across all narratives, and that feminine typicality predicted increased connectedness in narratives. Masculine typicality predicted higher agency, lower connectedness, and lower affect, but only for some narratives and not others. These findings support an approach that views autobiographical reminiscing as a feminine-typed activity and that identifies gender differences as being linked to categorical gender, but also to one's feminine gender typicality, whereas the influences of masculine gender typicality were more context-dependent. We suggest that implicit gendered socialization and more explicit gender typicality each contribute to gendered autobiographies. PMID:27068433

  13. Creating Non-Believed Memories for Recent Autobiographical Events

    PubMed Central

    Clark, Andrew; Nash, Robert A.; Fincham, Gabrielle; Mazzoni, Giuliana

    2012-01-01

    A recent study showed that many people spontaneously report vivid memories of events that they do not believe to have occurred [1]. In the present experiment we tested for the first time whether, after powerful false memories have been created, debriefing might leave behind nonbelieved memories for the fake events. In Session 1 participants imitated simple actions, and in Session 2 they saw doctored video-recordings containing clips that falsely suggested they had performed additional (fake) actions. As in earlier studies, this procedure created powerful false memories. In Session 3, participants were debriefed and told that specific actions in the video were not truly performed. Beliefs and memories for all critical actions were tested before and after the debriefing. Results showed that debriefing undermined participants' beliefs in fake actions, but left behind residual memory-like content. These results indicate that debriefing can leave behind vivid false memories which are no longer believed, and thus we demonstrate for the first time that the memory of an event can be experimentally dissociated from the belief in the event's occurrence. These results also confirm that belief in and memory for an event can be independently-occurring constructs. PMID:22427927

  14. A new method for assessing the impact of medial temporal lobe amnesia on the characteristics of generated autobiographical events.

    PubMed

    Lenton-Brym, Ariella; Kurczek, Jake; Rosenbaum, R Shayna; Sheldon, Signy

    2016-05-01

    Constructing autobiographical events involves an initial phase of event selection, in which a memory or imagined future event is initially brought to mind, followed by a phase of elaboration, in which an individual accesses detailed knowledge specific to the event. While considerable research demonstrates the importance of the medial temporal lobes (MTL) in the later phase, its role in initial event selection is unknown. The present study is the first to investigate the role of the MTL in event selection by assessing whether individuals with MTL lesions select qualitatively different events for remembering and imagining than matched control participants. To do so, we created "event captions" that reflected the type of events selected for an autobiographical event narrative task by four individuals with MTL amnesia and control counterparts. Over 450 online raters assessed these event captions on qualitative dimensions known to vary with autobiographical recall (frequency, significance, emotionality, imageability, and uniqueness). Our critical finding was that individuals with MTL amnesia were more prone to select events that were rated as more frequently occurring than healthy control participants. We interpret this finding as evidence that people with impaired episodic memory from MTL damage compensate for their compromised ability to recall detailed information by relying more heavily on semantic memory processes to select generalized events. We discuss the implications for theoretical models of memory and methodological approaches to studying autobiographical memory. PMID:26951933

  15. Autobiographical memory for shame or guilt provoking events: association with psychological symptoms.

    PubMed

    Robinaugh, Donald J; McNally, Richard J

    2010-07-01

    The diagnostic criteria for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) specify that a qualifying traumatic stressor must incite extreme peritraumatic fear, horror, or helplessness. However, research suggests that events inciting guilt or shame may be associated with PTSD. We devised a web-based survey in which non-clinical participants identified an event associated with shame or guilt and completed questionnaire measures of shame, guilt, PTSD, and depression. In addition, we assessed characteristics of memory for the event, including visual perspective and the centrality of the memory to the participant's autobiographical narrative (CES). Shame predicted depression and PTSD symptoms. There was no association between guilt and psychological symptoms after controlling statistically for the effects of shame. CES predicted the severity of depression and PTSD symptoms. In addition, CES mediated the moderating effect of visual perspective on the relationship between emotional intensity and PTSD symptoms. Our results suggest shame is capable of eliciting the intrusive and distressing memories characteristic of PTSD. Furthermore, our results suggest aversive emotional events are associated with psychological distress when memory for those events becomes central to one's identity and autobiographical narrative. PMID:20403584

  16. Distorted perception of the subjective temporal distance of autobiographical events in patients with schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Potheegadoo, Jevita; Cuervo-Lombard, Christine; Berna, Fabrice; Danion, Jean-Marie

    2012-03-01

    Disturbances of perception of subjective time have been described in schizophrenia but have not been experimentally studied until now. We investigated how patients with schizophrenia estimate the subjective temporal distance (TD) of past personal events, i.e. how these events are perceived as subjectively close or distant in time. Twenty-five patients with schizophrenia and 25 control participants recalled 24 autobiographical memories from four different life periods. They estimated the subjective TD and rated the amount of detail of each memory. Results showed that patients with schizophrenia had a distorted perception of subjective TD. Their memories were significantly less detailed than those of controls and, unlike control participants, the amount of memory detail was not significantly correlated with subjective TD. Poor access to memory detail may account for distortions of perception of subjective time in patients with schizophrenia. PMID:21993451

  17. Alterations in autobiographical memory for a blast event in OEF/OIF veterans with mild TBI

    PubMed Central

    Palombo, D.J.; Kapson, H.S.; Lafleche, G.; Vasterling, J.J.; Marx, B.P.; Franz, M.; Verfaellie, M.

    2016-01-01

    Objective Although loss of consciousness associated with moderate or severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) is thought to interfere with encoding of the TBI event, little is known about the effects of mild TBI (mTBI), which typically involves only transient disruption in consciousness. Method Blast-exposed Afghanistan and Iraq War veterans were asked to recall the blast event. Participants were stratified based on whether the blast was associated with probable mTBI (n=50) or not (n =25). Narratives were scored for organizational structure (i.e., coherence) using the Narrative Coherence Coding Scheme (Reese et al., 2011) and episodic recollection using the Autobiographical Interview coding procedures (Levine et al., 2002). Results The mTBI group produced narratives that were less coherent but contained more episodic details than those of the no-TBI group. Conclusions These results suggest that mTBI interferes with the organizational quality of memory in a manner that is independent of episodic detail generation. PMID:25893970

  18. Regret as Autobiographical Memory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Davison, Ian M.; Feeney, Aidan

    2008-01-01

    We apply an autobiographical memory framework to the study of regret. Focusing on the distinction between regrets for specific and general events we argue that the temporal profile of regret, usually explained in terms of the action-inaction distinction, is predicted by models of autobiographical memory. In two studies involving participants in…

  19. Schema Driven Construction of Future Autobiographical Traumatic Events: The Future is Much More Troubling than the Past

    PubMed Central

    Rubin, David C.

    2013-01-01

    Research on future episodic thought has produced compelling theories and results in cognitive psychology, cognitive neuroscience, and clinical psychology. To integrate these using basic concepts and methods from autobiographical memory research, 76 undergraduates remembered past and imagined future positive and negative events that had or would have a major impact on them. Correlations of the online ratings of visual and auditory imagery, emotion, and other measures demonstrated that individuals used the same processes to the same extent to remember past and construct future events. These measures predicted the theoretically important metacognitive judgment of past reliving and future ‘preliving’ in similar ways. Future negative events had much higher scores than past negative events on standardized tests of reactions to traumatic events, scores in the range that would qualify for a diagnosis of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), which was replicated (n = 52) to check for order effects. Consistent with earlier work, future events had less sensory vividness. Thus, the imagined symptoms of future events were unlikely to be caused by sensory vividness. To confirm this, 63 undergraduates produced numerous added details between two constructions of the same negative future events, removing deficits in rated vividness with no increase in the standardized tests of reactions to traumatic events. Neuroticism predicted individuals’ reactions to negative past events but did not predict imagined reactions to future events. This set of novel methods and findings are interpreted in the contexts of the literatures of episodic future thought, autobiographical memory, PTSD, and classic schema theory. PMID:23607632

  20. Autobiographical Memory and Imagining Future Personal Events: Event Specificity and Symptoms of Depression and Stress Following Exposure to an Analogue Trauma.

    PubMed

    Belcher, Jessica; Kangas, Maria

    2015-12-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate whether reduced autobiographical memory and future event specificity were associated with elevated depressive and stress symptoms immediately and 1 week following exposure to a trauma film. A non-clinical sample comprising 101 participants completed all phases of the study, which included the following: baseline tests of autobiographical memory and future event specificity; a diary recording intrusions of the film over a 7-day period; and self-report questionnaires assessing depressive, posttraumatic stress and ruminative symptoms 7 days following the trauma film viewing. Overgeneral autobiographical memory was significantly related to deficits in the specificity with which participants imagined future events. Participants who were more specific when remembering past and imagining future events reported less intrusions related to the trauma film over the 7-day period following the film; however, event specificity was not associated with depressive and stress symptoms 7 days later. These findings suggest that reduced past and future event specificity may play a role in the experience of intrusions following the experience of a stressful event. PMID:24619847

  1. Event Memory: A Theory of Memory for Laboratory, Autobiographical, and Fictional Events

    PubMed Central

    Rubin, David C.; Umanath, Sharda

    2015-01-01

    An event memory is a mental construction of a scene recalled as a single occurrence. It therefore requires the hippocampus and ventral visual stream needed for all scene construction. The construction need not come with a sense of reliving or be made by a participant in the event, and it can be a summary of occurrences from more than one encoding. The mental construction, or physical rendering, of any scene must be done from a specific location and time; this introduces a ‘self’ located in space and time, which is a necessary, but need not be a sufficient, condition for a sense of reliving. We base our theory on scene construction rather than reliving because this allows the integration of many literatures and because there is more accumulated knowledge about scene construction’s phenomenology, behavior, and neural basis. Event memory differs from episodic memory in that it does not conflate the independent dimensions of whether or not a memory is relived, is about the self, is recalled voluntarily, or is based on a single encoding with whether it is recalled as a single occurrence of a scene. Thus, we argue that event memory provides a clearer contrast to semantic memory, which also can be about the self, be recalled voluntarily, and be from a unique encoding; allows for a more comprehensive dimensional account of the structure of explicit memory; and better accounts for laboratory and real world behavioral and neural results, including those from neuropsychology and neuroimaging, than does episodic memory. PMID:25330330

  2. Time, Language, and Autobiographical Memory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Burt, Christopher D. B.

    2008-01-01

    Life themes, general events, and event-specific episodes, together with autobiographical knowledge, form autobiographical memory. Each of these memory structures is described, and research that has investigated the storage and retrieval of temporal information for life events, such as place in time, duration, and order, is examined. The general…

  3. Personal semantics: Is it distinct from episodic and semantic memory? An electrophysiological study of memory for autobiographical facts and repeated events in honor of Shlomo Bentin.

    PubMed

    Renoult, Louis; Tanguay, Annick; Beaudry, Myriam; Tavakoli, Paniz; Rabipour, Sheida; Campbell, Kenneth; Moscovitch, Morris; Levine, Brian; Davidson, Patrick S R

    2016-03-01

    Declarative memory is thought to consist of two independent systems: episodic and semantic. Episodic memory represents personal and contextually unique events, while semantic memory represents culturally-shared, acontextual factual knowledge. Personal semantics refers to aspects of declarative memory that appear to fall somewhere in between the extremes of episodic and semantic. Examples include autobiographical knowledge and memories of repeated personal events. These two aspects of personal semantics have been studied little and rarely compared to both semantic and episodic memory. We recorded the event-related potentials (ERPs) of 27 healthy participants while they verified the veracity of sentences probing four types of questions: general (i.e., semantic) facts, autobiographical facts, repeated events, and unique (i.e., episodic) events. Behavioral results showed equivalent reaction times in all 4 conditions. True sentences were verified faster than false sentences, except for unique events for which no significant difference was observed. Electrophysiological results showed that the N400 (which is classically associated with retrieval from semantic memory) was maximal for general facts and the LPC (which is classically associated with retrieval from episodic memory) was maximal for unique events. For both ERP components, the two personal semantic conditions (i.e., autobiographical facts and repeated events) systematically differed from semantic memory. In addition, N400 amplitudes also differentiated autobiographical facts from unique events. Autobiographical facts and repeated events did not differ significantly from each other but their corresponding scalp distributions differed from those associated with general facts. Our results suggest that the neural correlates of personal semantics can be distinguished from those of semantic and episodic memory, and may provide clues as to how unique events are transformed to semantic memory. PMID:26277459

  4. Multimodal retrieval of autobiographical memories: sensory information contributes differently to the recollection of events

    PubMed Central

    Willander, Johan; Sikström, Sverker; Karlsson, Kristina

    2015-01-01

    Previous studies on autobiographical memory have focused on unimodal retrieval cues (i.e., cues pertaining to one modality). However, from an ecological perspective multimodal cues (i.e., cues pertaining to several modalities) are highly important to investigate. In the present study we investigated age distributions and experiential ratings of autobiographical memories retrieved with unimodal and multimodal cues. Sixty-two participants were randomized to one of four cue-conditions: visual, olfactory, auditory, or multimodal. The results showed that the peak of the distributions depends on the modality of the retrieval cue. The results indicated that multimodal retrieval seemed to be driven by visual and auditory information to a larger extent and to a lesser extent by olfactory information. Finally, no differences were observed in the number of retrieved memories or experiential ratings across the four cue-conditions. PMID:26594186

  5. Remembering President Barack Obama's inauguration and the landing of US Airways Flight 1549: a comparison of the predictors of autobiographical and event memory.

    PubMed

    Koppel, Jonathan; Brown, Adam D; Stone, Charles B; Coman, Alin; Hirst, William

    2013-01-01

    We examined and compared the predictors of autobiographical memory (AM) consistency and event memory accuracy across two publicly documented yet disparate public events: the inauguration of Barack Obama as the 44th president of the United States on January 20th 2009, and the emergency landing of US Airways Flight 1549, off the coast of Manhattan, on January 15th 2009. We tracked autobiographical and event memories for both events, with assessments taking place within 2½ weeks of both events (Survey 1), and again between 3½ and 4 months after both events (Survey 2). In a series of stepwise regressions we found that the psychological variables of recalled emotional intensity and personal importance/centrality predicted AM consistency and event memory accuracy for the inauguration. Conversely, the rehearsal variables of covert rehearsal and media attention predicted, respectively, AM consistency and event memory accuracy for the plane landing. We conclude from these findings that different factors may underlie autobiographical and event memory for personally and culturally significant events (e.g., the inauguration), relative to noteworthy, yet less culturally significant, events (e.g., the plane landing). PMID:23301921

  6. Emotion and autobiographical memory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holland, Alisha C.; Kensinger, Elizabeth A.

    2010-03-01

    Autobiographical memory encompasses our recollections of specific, personal events. In this article, we review the interactions between emotion and autobiographical memory, focusing on two broad ways in which these interactions occur. First, the emotional content of an experience can influence the way in which the event is remembered. Second, emotions and emotional goals experienced at the time of autobiographical retrieval can influence the information recalled. We discuss the behavioral manifestations of each of these types of interactions and describe the neural mechanisms that may support those interactions. We discuss how findings from the clinical literature (e.g., regarding depression) and the social psychology literature (e.g., on emotion regulation) might inform future investigations of the interplay between the emotions experienced at the time of retrieval and the memories recalled, and we present ideas for future research in this domain.

  7. Emotion and Autobiographical Memory

    PubMed Central

    Holland, Alisha C.; Kensinger, Elizabeth A.

    2010-01-01

    Autobiographical memory encompasses our recollections of specific, personal events. In this article, we review the interactions between emotion and autobiographical memory, focusing on two broad ways in which these interactions occur. First, the emotional content of an experience can influence the way in which the event is remembered. Second, emotions and emotional goals experienced at the time of autobiographical retrieval can influence the information recalled. We discuss the behavioral manifestations of each of these types of interactions and describe the neural mechanisms that may support those interactions. We discuss how findings from the clinical literature (e.g., regarding depression) and the social psychology literature (e.g., on emotion regulation) might inform future investigations of the interplay between the emotions experienced at the time of retrieval and the memories recalled, and we present ideas for future research in this domain. PMID:20374933

  8. Happiness increases distraction by auditory deviant stimuli.

    PubMed

    Pacheco-Unguetti, Antonia Pilar; Parmentier, Fabrice B R

    2016-08-01

    Rare and unexpected changes (deviants) in an otherwise repeated stream of task-irrelevant auditory distractors (standards) capture attention and impair behavioural performance in an ongoing visual task. Recent evidence indicates that this effect is increased by sadness in a task involving neutral stimuli. We tested the hypothesis that such effect may not be limited to negative emotions but reflect a general depletion of attentional resources by examining whether a positive emotion (happiness) would increase deviance distraction too. Prior to performing an auditory-visual oddball task, happiness or a neutral mood was induced in participants by means of the exposure to music and the recollection of an autobiographical event. Results from the oddball task showed significantly larger deviance distraction following the induction of happiness. Interestingly, the small amount of distraction typically observed on the standard trial following a deviant trial (post-deviance distraction) was not increased by happiness. We speculate that happiness might interfere with the disengagement of attention from the deviant sound back towards the target stimulus (through the depletion of cognitive resources and/or mind wandering) but help subsequent cognitive control to recover from distraction. PMID:26302716

  9. Event centrality of positive and negative autobiographical memories to identity and life story across cultures.

    PubMed

    Zaragoza Scherman, Alejandra; Salgado, Sinué; Shao, Zhifang; Berntsen, Dorthe

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate whether cultural differences exist in event centrality, emotional distress and well-being in a total of 565 adults above age 40 from Mexico, Greenland, China and Denmark. Participants completed questionnaires to determine their level of post-traumatic stress disorder and depression symptoms, and of life satisfaction. They also completed event centrality scales for their most positive and most negative life events. Across cultures, participants rated positive events as more central to their identity and life stories, compared with negative events. Furthermore, participants with higher levels of emotional distress rated negative events as more central to their identity and life story, compared with participants with lower scores. However, a converse pattern was not found for positive events. Finally, participants with higher scores of life satisfaction tended to rate positive events as more central and negative events as less central to their identity and life story, compared with participants with lower scores. It is concluded that across cultures, positive events are considered more central to identity and life story than negative events and that event centrality ratings tend to be affected in similar ways by higher versus lower levels of emotional distress or well-being. PMID:25337771

  10. Body Posture Facilitates Retrieval of Autobiographical Memories

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dijkstra, Katinka; Kaschak, Michael P.; Zwaan, Rolf A.

    2007-01-01

    We assessed potential facilitation of congruent body posture on access to and retention of autobiographical memories in younger and older adults. Response times were shorter when body positions during prompted retrieval of autobiographical events were similar to the body positions in the original events than when body position was incongruent.…

  11. Post-event information affects children's autobiographical memory after one year.

    PubMed

    London, Kamala; Bruck, Maggie; Melnyk, Laura

    2009-08-01

    In two experiments, we examined whether post-event information (PEI) about true and false events persisted in children's reports after approximately 1 year. In Experiment 1, 4- to 6-year-olds were given PEI and then were given memory tests 2 weeks and 15 months later. Although PEI appeared in free recall at the initial testing, it decreased substantially by the long-term test. In contrast, on recognition tasks the children showed facilitation and misinformation effects at initial and follow-up tests. Experiment 2 replicated lasting misinformation and facilitation effects in recognition memory among 4- to 9-year-olds who were tested after 1-week and 10-month delays. We conclude that true and false reminders about an experienced event continue to affect children's memory approximately 1 year later. PMID:18679779

  12. Oscillatory correlates of autobiographical memory.

    PubMed

    Knyazev, Gennady G; Savostyanov, Alexander N; Bocharov, Andrey V; Dorosheva, Elena A; Tamozhnikov, Sergey S; Saprigyn, Alexander E

    2015-03-01

    Recollection of events from one's own life is referred to as autobiographical memory. Autobiographical memory is an important part of our self. Neuroimaging findings link self-referential processes with the default mode network (DMN). Much evidence coming primarily from functional magnetic resonance imaging studies shows that autobiographical memory and DMN have a common neural base. In this study, electroencephalographic data collected in 47 participants during recollection of autobiographical episodes were analyzed using temporal and spatial independent component analyses in combination with source localization. Autobiographical remembering was associated with an increase of spectral power in alpha and beta and a decrease in delta band. The increase of alpha power, as estimated by sLORETA, was most prominent in the posterior DMN, but was also observed in visual and motor cortices, prompting an assumption that it is associated with activation of DMN and inhibition of irrelevant sensory and motor areas. In line with data linking delta oscillations with aversive states, decrease of delta power was more pronounced in episodes associated with positive emotions, whereas episodes associated with negative emotions were accompanied by an increase of delta power. Vividness of recollection correlated positively with theta oscillations. These results highlight the leading role of alpha oscillations and the DMN in the processes accompanying autobiographical remembering. PMID:25523347

  13. Explaining happiness.

    PubMed

    Easterlin, Richard A

    2003-09-16

    What do social survey data tell us about the determinants of happiness? First, that the psychologists' setpoint model is questionable. Life events in the nonpecuniary domain, such as marriage, divorce, and serious disability, have a lasting effect on happiness, and do not simply deflect the average person temporarily above or below a setpoint given by genetics and personality. Second, mainstream economists' inference that in the pecuniary domain "more is better," based on revealed preference theory, is problematic. An increase in income, and thus in the goods at one's disposal, does not bring with it a lasting increase in happiness because of the negative effect on utility of hedonic adaptation and social comparison. A better theory of happiness builds on the evidence that adaptation and social comparison affect utility less in the nonpecuniary than pecuniary domains. Because individuals fail to anticipate the extent to which adaptation and social comparison undermine expected utility in the pecuniary domain, they allocate an excessive amount of time to pecuniary goals, and shortchange nonpecuniary ends such as family life and health, reducing their happiness. There is need to devise policies that will yield better-informed individual preferences, and thereby increase individual and societal well-being. PMID:12958207

  14. Very happy people.

    PubMed

    Diener, Ed; Seligman, Martin E P

    2002-01-01

    A sample of 222 undergraduates was screened for high happiness using multiple confirming assessment filters. We compared the upper 10% of consistently very happy people with average and very unhappy people. The very happy people were highly social, and had stronger romantic and other social relationships than less happy groups. They were more extraverted, more agreeable, and less neurotic, and scored lower on several psychopathology scales of the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory. Compared with the less happy groups, the happiest respondents did not exercise significantly more, participate in religious activities significantly more, or experience more objectively defined good events. No variable was sufficient for happiness, but good social relations were necessary. Members of the happiest group experienced positive, but not ecstatic, feelings most of the time, and they reported occasional negative moods. This suggests that very happy people do have a functioning emotion system that can react appropriately to life events. PMID:11894851

  15. Autobiographical reasoning: arguing and narrating from a biographical perspective.

    PubMed

    Habermas, Tilmann

    2011-01-01

    Autobiographical reasoning is the activity of creating relations between different parts of one's past, present, and future life and one's personality and development. It embeds personal memories in a culturally, temporally, causally, and thematically coherent life story. Prototypical autobiographical arguments are presented. Culture and socializing interactions shape the development of autobiographical reasoning especially in late childhood and adolescence. Situated at the intersection of cognitive and narrative development and autobiographical memory, autobiographical reasoning contributes to the development of personality and identity, is instrumental in efforts to cope with life events, and helps to create a shared history. PMID:21387528

  16. The autobiographical IAT: a review

    PubMed Central

    Agosta, Sara; Sartori, Giuseppe

    2013-01-01

    The autobiographical Implicit Association Test (aIAT; Sartori et al., 2008) is a variant of the Implicit Association Test (IAT; Greenwald et al., 1998) that is used to establish whether an autobiographical memory is encoded in the respondent's mind/brain. More specifically, with the aIAT, it is possible to evaluate which one of two autobiographical events is true. The method consists of a computerized categorization task. The aIAT includes stimuli belonging to four categories, two of them are logical categories and are represented by sentences that are always true (e.g., I am in front of a computer) or always false (e.g., I am climbing a mountain) for the respondent; two other categories are represented by alternative versions of an autobiographical event (e.g., I went to Paris for Christmas, or I went to New York for Christmas), only one of which is true. The true autobiographical event is identified because, in a combined block, it gives rise to faster reaction times when it shares the same motor response with true sentences. Here, we reviewed all the validation experiments and found more than 90% accuracy in detecting the true memory. We show that agreement in identifying the true autobiographical memory of the same aIAT repeated twice is, on average, more than 90%, and we report a technique for estimating accuracy associated with a single classification based on the D-IAT value, which may be used in single subject's investigations. We show that the aIAT might be used to identify also true intentions and reasons and conclude with a series of guidelines for building an effective aIAT. PMID:23964261

  17. Music evokes vivid autobiographical memories.

    PubMed

    Belfi, Amy M; Karlan, Brett; Tranel, Daniel

    2016-08-01

    Music is strongly intertwined with memories-for example, hearing a song from the past can transport you back in time, triggering the sights, sounds, and feelings of a specific event. This association between music and vivid autobiographical memory is intuitively apparent, but the idea that music is intimately tied with memories, seemingly more so than other potent memory cues (e.g., familiar faces), has not been empirically tested. Here, we compared memories evoked by music to those evoked by famous faces, predicting that music-evoked autobiographical memories (MEAMs) would be more vivid. Participants listened to 30 songs, viewed 30 faces, and reported on memories that were evoked. Memories were transcribed and coded for vividness as in Levine, B., Svoboda, E., Hay, J. F., Winocur, G., & Moscovitch, M. [2002. Aging and autobiographical memory: Dissociating episodic from semantic retrieval. Psychology and Aging, 17, 677-689]. In support of our hypothesis, MEAMs were more vivid than autobiographical memories evoked by faces. MEAMs contained a greater proportion of internal details and a greater number of perceptual details, while face-evoked memories contained a greater number of external details. Additionally, we identified sex differences in memory vividness: for both stimulus categories, women retrieved more vivid memories than men. The results show that music not only effectively evokes autobiographical memories, but that these memories are more vivid than those evoked by famous faces. PMID:26259098

  18. Origins of Adolescents' Autobiographical Memories

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reese, Elaine; Jack, Fiona; White, Naomi

    2010-01-01

    Adolescents (N = 46; M = 12.46 years) who had previously participated in a longitudinal study of autobiographical memory development narrated their early childhood memories, interpreted life events, and completed a family history questionnaire and language assessment. Three distinct components of adolescent memory emerged: (1) age of earliest…

  19. The perception of fearful and happy facial expression is modulated by anxiety: an event-related potential study.

    PubMed

    Rossignol, M; Philippot, P; Douilliez, C; Crommelinck, M; Campanella, S

    2005-03-29

    Anxiety is supposed to interfere with cognitive and emotional processing and high level of trait-anxiety has been associated with an attentional bias for fearful faces, even in sub-clinical anxiety. On the basis of the Spielberger State and Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI), twenty students were grouped as low vs. high anxious. Pictures from the Ekman and Friesen series were used in an event-related potentials study to investigate the neurophysiological correlates of the emotional processing of fear and happiness in sub-clinical anxiety. Subjects were confronted with a visual oddball design, in which they had to detect, as quickly as possible, deviant happy or fearful faces amongst a train of standard stimuli (neutral faces). Anxiety does not modify early perceptual (N100, P100, N170, VPP) or attentional (N2b) component, but later components are affected. Indeed, high anxious subjects are faster to detect deviant faces as suggested by earlier reaction times and P3b component. However, they show a reduced ability to process the emotional content of faces, this deficit being indexed by a decreased N300 component. Indeed, N300 is supposed to be particularly sensitive to affective features of stimuli rather than to physical characteristics. We propose that the earlier P3b observed in high anxious subjects could be interpreted as a way to overcome the deficient emotional appraisal by a more salient conscious processing. PMID:15740848

  20. Relations between the functions of autobiographical memory and psychological wellbeing.

    PubMed

    Waters, Theodore E A

    2014-01-01

    Researchers have proposed that autobiographical memory serves three basic functions in everyday life: self-definition, social connection, and directing behaviour (e.g., Bluck, Alea, Habermas, & Rubin, 2005). However, no research has examined relations between the functions of autobiographical memory and healthy functioning (i.e., psychological wellbeing). The present research examined the relations between the self, social, and directive functions of autobiographical memory and three factors of psychological wellbeing in single and recurring autobiographical memories. A total of 103 undergraduate students were recruited and provided ratings of each function for four autobiographical memories (two single, two recurring events). Results found that individuals who use their autobiographical memories to serve self, social, and directive functions reported higher levels of Purpose and Communion and Positive Relationships, and that these relations differ slightly by event type. PMID:23537126

  1. Gender differences in autobiographical memory for everyday events: retrieval elicited by SenseCam images versus verbal cues.

    PubMed

    St Jacques, Peggy L; Conway, Martin A; Cabeza, Roberto

    2011-10-01

    Gender differences are frequently observed in autobiographical memory (AM). However, few studies have investigated the neural basis of potential gender differences in AM. In the present functional MRI (fMRI) study we investigated gender differences in AMs elicited using dynamic visual images vs verbal cues. We used a novel technology called a SenseCam, a wearable device that automatically takes thousands of photographs. SenseCam differs considerably from other prospective methods of generating retrieval cues because it does not disrupt the ongoing experience. This allowed us to control for potential gender differences in emotional processing and elaborative rehearsal, while manipulating how the AMs were elicited. We predicted that males would retrieve more richly experienced AMs elicited by the SenseCam images vs the verbal cues, whereas females would show equal sensitivity to both cues. The behavioural results indicated that there were no gender differences in subjective ratings of reliving, importance, vividness, emotion, and uniqueness, suggesting that gender differences in brain activity were not due to differences in these measures of phenomenological experience. Consistent with our predictions, the fMRI results revealed that males showed a greater difference in functional activity associated with the rich experience of SenseCam vs verbal cues, than did females. PMID:20981611

  2. Air blasts generated by rockfall impacts: Analysis of the 1996 Happy Isles event in Yosemite National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Morrissey, M.M.; Savage, W.Z.; Wieczorek, G.F.

    1999-01-01

    The July 10, 1996, Happy Isles rockfall in Yosemite National Park, California, released 23,000 to 38,000 m3 of granite in four separate events. The impacts of the first two events which involved a 550-m free fall, generated seismic waves and atmospheric pressure waves (air blasts). We focus on the dynamic behavior of the second air blast that downed over 1000 trees, destroyed a bridge, demolished a snack bar, and caused one fatality and several injuries. Calculated velocities for the air blast from a two-phase, finite difference model are compared to velocities estimated from tree damage. From tornadic studies of tree damage, the air blast is estimated to have traveled <108-120 m/s within 50 m from the impact and decreased to <10-20 m/s within 500 m from the impact. The numerical model simulates the two-dimensional propagation of an air blast through a dusty atmosphere with initial conditions defined by the impact velocity and pressure. The impact velocity (105-107 m/s) is estimated from the Colorado Rockfall Simulation Program that simulates rockfall trajectories. The impact pressure (0.5 MPa) is constrained by the kinetic energy of the impact (1010-1012 J) estimated from the seismic energy generated by the impact. Results from the air blast simulations indicate that the second Happy Isles air blast (weak shock wave) traveled with an initial velocity above the local sound speed. The size and location of the first impact are thought to have injected <50 wt % dust into the atmosphere. This amount of dust lowered the local atmospheric sound speed to ???220 m/s. The discrepancy between calculated velocity data and field estimated velocity data (???220 m/s versus ???110 m/s) is attributed to energy dissipated by the downing of trees and additional entrainment of debris into the atmosphere not included in the calculations. Copyright 1999 by the American Geophysical Union.

  3. Effects of Rehearsal on Perceived and Imagined Autobiographical Memories.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Suengas, Aurora G.; Johnson, Marcia K.

    It has been shown that internally generated (thought or imagination) and externally generated (events, things, or people encountered in the past) autobiographical memories differ in characteristic ways. To examine the consequences of rehearsal on simulated perceived and imagined autobiographical memories, 36 undergraduate students participated in…

  4. Normative Ideas of Life and Autobiographical Reasoning in Life Narratives

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bohn, Annette

    2011-01-01

    Autobiographical reasoning is closely related to the development of normative ideas about life as measured by the cultural life script. The acquisition of a life script is an important prerequisite for autobiographical reasoning because children learn through the life script which events are expected to go into their life story, and when to expect…

  5. Be Happy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bragdon, Julie

    2013-01-01

    The author has been thinking a lot about happiness lately. This started in earnest when she watched researcher Shawn Achor's 7-minute TEDX talk, entitled "The Happy Secret to Better Work," with parents and staff. Afterward, she was compelled to buy his book to learn more. "The Happiness Advantage: The Seven Principles of Positive Psychology That…

  6. Did you witness demonic possession? A response time analysis of the relationship between event plausibility and autobiographical beliefs.

    PubMed

    Mazzoni, Gilana

    2007-04-01

    This study tested the hypothesis that the search for information pertinent to answering the question "Did event x happen to you?" is preceded by a preliminary plausibility assessment, the outcome of which affects the amount of effort invested in the search. Undergraduate students were asked to assess the plausibility of six events and subsequently to rate their belief that each event had happened to them before the age of 6. Unknown to them, response times (RTs) for answering the belief questions were also recorded. RTs for making belief judgments were more highly correlated with plausibility than with belief, and were significantly associated with plausibility even when belief ratings were controlled. As predicted, RTs were very short when the event was deemed highly implausible and increased sharply if the event was deemed at least somewhat plausible; significant but less pronounced increases in RTs followed as plausibility increased further. PMID:17694913

  7. Children's Autobiographical Memories across the Years: Forensic Implications of Childhood Amnesia and Eyewitness Memory for Stressful Events

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Peterson, Carole

    2012-01-01

    This is a review of two bodies of research conducted by myself and my colleagues that is relevant to child witness issues, namely childhood amnesia and children's eyewitness memory for stressful events. Although considerable research over the years has investigated the phenomenon of childhood amnesia in adults, only recently has it begun to be…

  8. Neural mechanism underlying autobiographical memory modulated by remoteness and emotion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ge, Ruiyang; Fu, Yan; Wang, DaHua; Yao, Li; Long, Zhiying

    2012-03-01

    Autobiographical memory is the ability to recollect past events from one's own life. Both emotional tone and memory remoteness can influence autobiographical memory retrieval along the time axis of one's life. Although numerous studies have been performed to investigate brain regions involved in retrieving processes of autobiographical memory, the effect of emotional tone and memory age on autobiographical memory retrieval remains to be clarified. Moreover, whether the involvement of hippocampus in consolidation of autobiographical events is time dependent or independent has been controversial. In this study, we investigated the effect of memory remoteness (factor1: recent and remote) and emotional valence (factor2: positive and negative) on neural correlates underlying autobiographical memory by using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) technique. Although all four conditions activated some common regions known as "core" regions in autobiographical memory retrieval, there are some other regions showing significantly different activation for recent versus remote and positive versus negative memories. In particular, we found that bilateral hippocampal regions were activated in the four conditions regardless of memory remoteness and emotional valence. Thus, our study confirmed some findings of previous studies and provided further evidence to support the multi-trace theory which believes that the role of hippocampus involved in autobiographical memory retrieval is time-independent and permanent in memory consolidation.

  9. Autobiographical Memory Specificity in Child Sexual Abuse Victims

    PubMed Central

    Ogle, Christin M.; Block, Stephanie D.; Harris, LaTonya S.; Goodman, Gail S.; Pineda, Annarheen; Timmer, Susan; Urquiza, Anthony; Saywitz, Karen J.

    2013-01-01

    The present study examined the specificity of autobiographical memory in adolescents and adults with versus without child sexual abuse (CSA) histories. Eighty-five participants, approximately half of whom per age group had experienced CSA, were tested on the Autobiographical Memory Interview. Individual difference measures, including for trauma-related psychopathology, were also administered. Findings revealed developmental differences in the relation between autobiographical memory specificity and CSA. Even with depression statistically controlled, reduced memory specificity in CSA victims relative to controls was observed among adolescents but not among adults. A higher number of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder criteria met predicted more specific childhood memories in participants who reported CSA as their most traumatic life event. These findings contribute to the scientific understanding of childhood trauma and autobiographical memory functioning and underscore the importance of considering the role of age and degree of traumatization within the study of autobiographical memory. PMID:23627947

  10. Dynamical models of happiness.

    PubMed

    Sprott, J C

    2005-01-01

    A sequence of models for the time evolution of one's happiness in response to external events is described. These models with added nonlinearities can produce stable oscillations and chaos even without external events. Potential implications for psychotherapy and a personal approach to life are discussed. PMID:15629066

  11. Bringing Order to Life Events: Memory for the Temporal Order of Autobiographical Events over an Extended Period in School-Aged Children and Adults

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pathman, Thanujeni; Doydum, Ayzit; Bauer, Patricia J.

    2013-01-01

    Remembering temporal information associated with personal past events is critical. Yet little is known about the development of temporal order memory for naturally occurring events. In the current research, 8- to 10-year-old children and adults took photographs daily for 4 weeks. Later, they participated in a primacy/recency task (were shown 2 of…

  12. When Autobiographical Memory Begins

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Howe, Mark L.; Courage, Mary L.; Edison, Shannon C.

    2003-01-01

    The authors review competing theories concerning the emergence and early development of autobiographical memory. It is argued that the differences between these accounts, although important, may be more apparent than real. The crux of these disagreements lies not in "what" processes are important, but rather, the role these different processes…

  13. Reduced autobiographical memory specificity in bereaved Afghan adolescents.

    PubMed

    Neshat Doost, Hamid Taher; Yule, William; Kalantari, Mehrdad; Rezvani, Sayed Rohollah; Dyregrov, Atle; Jobson, Laura

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated the effect of bereavement (father death due to war in Afghanistan) on autobiographical memory specificity in Afghan adolescents living in Iran. Participants consisted of bereaved (n=70) and non-bereaved (n=33) Afghan adolescents. The measures included Farsi versions of the Autobiographical Memory Test, Mood and Feeling Questionnaire, Revised Children's Manifest Anxiety Scale, and Impact of Event Scale. Results indicated that the bereaved group retrieved a significantly lower proportion of specific memories and a significantly greater proportion of extended and categoric memories than the non-bereaved group. Additionally, depression symptoms and reduced autobiographical memory specificity were significantly correlated. These findings suggest that bereaved adolescents have impaired autobiographical memory specificity. PMID:23889469

  14. The effect of burn injury on adolescents autobiographical memory.

    PubMed

    Stokes, D J; Dritschel, B H; Bekerian, D A

    2004-11-01

    Autobiographical memory recall was investigated in two female adolescent groups; one group who had experienced a burn injury and a matched control group. The Burn group was not currently depressed or anxious, but scored significantly higher on the intrusion subscale of the impact of event scale compared to controls. Two autobiographical memory tasks, the autobiographical memory cueing task and the Children's Autobiographical Memory Inventory (CAMI), were used. For the cueing task, the Burn group was significantly slower to recall specific memories. This group also recalled significantly fewer specific memories and significantly more extended overgeneral memories. For the CAMI, the burns group produced significantly lower semantic and episodic recall. The Burn group also produced significant correlations between sub-scales of the impact of event scale and selected measures on the autobiographical memory tasks. Higher intrusion scores were associated with less detailed episodic recall. Higher avoidance scores were associated with longer latencies to recall memories to negative cue words and fewer specific memories to all cue words. These results are discussed from the perspective that the Burn group experienced intrusive thoughts which interfered with normal autobiographical functioning. PMID:15381443

  15. [Beyond happiness].

    PubMed

    Hillen, Harry F P

    2012-01-01

    Cancer has a drastic effect on the day-by-day feeling of well-being of many people in our greying society. After a long history of melancholia and powerlessness unexpectedly many advances in the treatment of cancer have now been made. However, the happiness brought about by successful treatment is being dulled by the consequences of this often intensive treatment. Despite longer survival having been achieved, chronic severe fatigue and a high risk of developing cardiovascular disease or a second tumour now stand between the cancer survivor and happiness. The price that has to be paid for surviving cancer seems to be higher than was originally thought. PMID:23249516

  16. Emma's Happiness.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Spacks, Patricia Meyer

    1986-01-01

    Discusses teaching J. Austen's "Emma" in light of the issue of happiness in order to make the novel more interesting to students who do not like Emma, the character. Suggests that the multiplicity of questions raised by Austen will provide sufficient material for discussion. (SRT)

  17. Happy Healers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Winter, Robin O.

    2011-01-01

    Family Medicine residency programs in the United States are required to promote resident well-being. This article describes how one residency does this by teaching the concepts of Positive Psychology and Authentic Happiness developed by Dr. Martin Seligman utilizing a multi-media curriculum. As part of this curriculum, residents listen to the song…

  18. Gender, Power, and Autobiographical Memory.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nakash-Eisikovits, Ora; Brody, Leslie R.; Sotoo, Naomi; Gonzalez, Karla

    This study explores the influence of gender and power on autobiographical memory following a brief social interaction. The hypothesis stated that gender and social role (that of leaders versus helpers) would interact in predicting the affective tone and themes (agency and communion) of an autobiographical memory for previous leadership…

  19. Behavioral and neuroanatomical investigation of Highly Superior Autobiographical Memory (HSAM)

    PubMed Central

    LePort, Aurora K.R.; Mattfeld, Aaron T.; Dickinson-Anson, Heather; Fallon, James H.; Stark, Craig E.L.; Kruggel, Frithjof; Cahill, Larry; McGaugh, James L.

    2013-01-01

    A single case study recently documented one woman’s ability to recall accurately vast amounts of autobiographical information, spanning most of her lifetime, without the use of practiced mnemonics (Parker, Cahill, & McGaugh, 2006). The current study reports findings based on eleven participants expressing this same memory ability, now referred to as Highly Superior Autobiographical Memory (HSAM). Participants were identified and subsequently characterized based on screening for memory of public events. They were then tested for personal autobiographical memories as well as for memory assessed by laboratory memory tests. Additionally, whole-brain structural MRI scans were obtained. Results indicated that HSAM participants performed significantly better at recalling public as well as personal autobiographical events as well as the days and dates on which these events occurred. However, their performance was comparable to age- and sex-matched controls on most standard laboratory memory tests. Neuroanatomical results identified nine structures as being morphologically different from those of control participants. The study of HSAM may provide new insights into the neurobiology of autobiographical memory. PMID:22652113

  20. Happiness Might Sometimes Harm Your Heart, Study Finds

    MedlinePlus

    ... rare, and experts refer to it as takotsubo syndrome, or broken heart syndrome. The syndrome is the result of a sudden, ... a happy event. The researchers dubbed it "happy heart syndrome." The findings show that doctors need to consider " ...

  1. We Happy Few: Using Structured Population Models to Identify the Decisive Events in the Lives of Exceptional Individuals.

    PubMed

    Snyder, Robin E; Ellner, Stephen P

    2016-08-01

    In any population, some individuals make it big: they are among the few that produce many offspring, grow to large size, and so on. What distinguishes the lives of these happy few? We present three approaches for identifying what factors distinguish those "lucky" individuals who come to dominate reproduction in a population without fixed differences between individuals (genotype, site quality, etc.): comparing life-history trajectories for lucky and unlucky individuals and calculating the elasticity of the probability of becoming lucky to perturbations in demographic rates at a given size or a given age. As examples we consider published size-structured integral projection models for the tropical tree Dacrydium elatum and the semiarid shrub Artemisia ordosica and an age-size-structured matrix model for the tropical tree Cedrela ordosica. We find that good fortune (e.g., rapid growth) when small and young matters much more than good fortune when older and larger. Becoming lucky is primarily a matter of surviving while others die. For species with more variable growth (such as Cedrela and Ordosica), it is also a matter of growing fast. We focus on reproductive skew, but our methods are broadly applicable and can be used to investigate how individuals come to be exceptional in any aspect. PMID:27420793

  2. Ventromedial prefrontal cortex, adding value to autobiographical memories.

    PubMed

    Lin, Wen-Jing; Horner, Aidan J; Burgess, Neil

    2016-01-01

    The medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) has been consistently implicated in autobiographical memory recall and decision making. Its function in decision making tasks is believed to relate to value representation, but its function in autobiographical memory recall is not yet clear. We hypothesised that the mPFC represents the subjective value of elements during autobiographical memory retrieval. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging during an autobiographical memory recall task, we found that the blood oxygen level dependent (BOLD) signal in ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC) was parametrically modulated by the affective values of items in participants' memories when they were recalling and evaluating these items. An unrelated modulation by the participant's familiarity with the items was also observed. During retrieval of the event, the BOLD signal in the same region was modulated by the personal significance and emotional intensity of the memory, which was correlated with the values of the items within them. These results support the idea that vmPFC processes self-relevant information, and suggest that it is involved in representing the personal emotional values of the elements comprising autobiographical memories. PMID:27338616

  3. Ventromedial prefrontal cortex, adding value to autobiographical memories

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Wen-Jing; Horner, Aidan J.; Burgess, Neil

    2016-01-01

    The medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) has been consistently implicated in autobiographical memory recall and decision making. Its function in decision making tasks is believed to relate to value representation, but its function in autobiographical memory recall is not yet clear. We hypothesised that the mPFC represents the subjective value of elements during autobiographical memory retrieval. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging during an autobiographical memory recall task, we found that the blood oxygen level dependent (BOLD) signal in ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC) was parametrically modulated by the affective values of items in participants’ memories when they were recalling and evaluating these items. An unrelated modulation by the participant’s familiarity with the items was also observed. During retrieval of the event, the BOLD signal in the same region was modulated by the personal significance and emotional intensity of the memory, which was correlated with the values of the items within them. These results support the idea that vmPFC processes self-relevant information, and suggest that it is involved in representing the personal emotional values of the elements comprising autobiographical memories. PMID:27338616

  4. Autobiographical memory decline in Alzheimer's disease, a theoretical and clinical overview.

    PubMed

    El Haj, Mohamad; Antoine, Pascal; Nandrino, Jean Louis; Kapogiannis, Dimitrios

    2015-09-01

    Autobiographical memory, or memory for personal experiences, allows individuals to define themselves and construct a meaningful life story. Decline of this ability, as observed in Alzheimer's disease (AD), results in an impaired sense of self and identity. In our model (AMAD: Autobiographical Memory in Alzheimer's Disease), we present a critical review of theories and findings regarding cognitive and neuroanatomical underpinnings of autobiographical memory and its decline in AD and highlight studies on its clinical rehabilitation. We propose that autobiographical recall in AD is mainly characterized by loss of associated episodic information, which leads to de-contextualization of autobiographical memories and a shift from reliving past events to a general sense of familiarity. This decline refers to retrograde, but also anterograde amnesia that affects newly acquired memories besides remote ones. One consequence of autobiographical memory decline in AD is decreased access to memories that shape self-consciousness, self-knowledge, and self-images, leading to a diminished sense of self and identity. The link between autobiographical decline and compromised sense of self in AD can also manifest itself as low correspondence and coherence between past memories and current goals and beliefs. By linking cognitive, neuroanatomical, and clinical aspects of autobiographical decline in AD, our review provides a theoretical foundation, which may lead to better rehabilitation strategies. PMID:26169474

  5. Dissociating Appraisals of Accuracy and Recollection in Autobiographical Remembering

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scoboria, Alan; Pascal, Lisa

    2016-01-01

    Recent studies of metamemory appraisals implicated in autobiographical remembering have established distinct roles for judgments of occurrence, recollection, and accuracy for past events. In studies involving everyday remembering, measures of recollection and accuracy correlate highly (>.85). Thus although their measures are structurally…

  6. Autobiographical Memory as a Predictor of Depression Vulnerability in Girls

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hipwell, Alison E.; Sapotichne, Brenna; Klostermann, Susan; Battista, Deena; Keenan, Kate

    2011-01-01

    Overgeneral autobiographical memory (AM), the tendency to recall categories of events when asked to provide specific instances from one's life, is purported to be a marker of depression vulnerability that develops in childhood. Although early adolescence is a period of risk for depression onset especially among girls, prospective examination of…

  7. Measuring Happiness: From Fluctuating Happiness to Authentic–Durable Happiness

    PubMed Central

    Dambrun, Michaël; Ricard, Matthieu; Després, Gérard; Drelon, Emilie; Gibelin, Eva; Gibelin, Marion; Loubeyre, Mélanie; Py, Delphine; Delpy, Aurore; Garibbo, Céline; Bray, Elise; Lac, Gérard; Michaux, Odile

    2012-01-01

    On the basis of the theoretical distinction between self-centeredness and selflessness (Dambrun and Ricard, 2011), the main goal of this research was to develop two new scales assessing distinct dimensions of happiness. By trying to maximize pleasures and to avoid displeasures, we propose that a self-centered functioning induces a fluctuating happiness in which phases of pleasure and displeasure alternate repeatedly (i.e., Fluctuating Happiness). In contrast, a selfless psychological functioning postulates the existence of a state of durable plenitude that is less dependent upon circumstances but rather is related to a person’s inner resources and abilities to deal with whatever comes his way in life (i.e., Authentic–Durable Happiness). Using various samples (n = 735), we developed a 10-item Scale measuring Subjective Fluctuating Happiness (SFHS) and a 13-item scale assessing Subjective Authentic–Durable Happiness (SA–DHS). Results indicated high internal consistencies, satisfactory test–retest validities, and adequate convergent and discriminant validities with various constructs including a biological marker of stress (salivary cortisol). Consistent with our theoretical framework, while self-enhancement values were related only to fluctuating happiness, self-transcendence values were related only to authentic–durable happiness. Support for the distinction between contentment and inner-peace, two related markers of authentic happiness, also was found. PMID:22347202

  8. Measuring happiness: from fluctuating happiness to authentic-durable happiness.

    PubMed

    Dambrun, Michaël; Ricard, Matthieu; Després, Gérard; Drelon, Emilie; Gibelin, Eva; Gibelin, Marion; Loubeyre, Mélanie; Py, Delphine; Delpy, Aurore; Garibbo, Céline; Bray, Elise; Lac, Gérard; Michaux, Odile

    2012-01-01

    On the basis of the theoretical distinction between self-centeredness and selflessness (Dambrun and Ricard, 2011), the main goal of this research was to develop two new scales assessing distinct dimensions of happiness. By trying to maximize pleasures and to avoid displeasures, we propose that a self-centered functioning induces a fluctuating happiness in which phases of pleasure and displeasure alternate repeatedly (i.e., Fluctuating Happiness). In contrast, a selfless psychological functioning postulates the existence of a state of durable plenitude that is less dependent upon circumstances but rather is related to a person's inner resources and abilities to deal with whatever comes his way in life (i.e., Authentic-Durable Happiness). Using various samples (n = 735), we developed a 10-item Scale measuring Subjective Fluctuating Happiness (SFHS) and a 13-item scale assessing Subjective Authentic-Durable Happiness (SA-DHS). Results indicated high internal consistencies, satisfactory test-retest validities, and adequate convergent and discriminant validities with various constructs including a biological marker of stress (salivary cortisol). Consistent with our theoretical framework, while self-enhancement values were related only to fluctuating happiness, self-transcendence values were related only to authentic-durable happiness. Support for the distinction between contentment and inner-peace, two related markers of authentic happiness, also was found. PMID:22347202

  9. Autobiographical Memory Specificity and Emotional Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Williams, J. Mark G.; Barnhofer, Thorsten; Crane, Catherine; Hermans, Dirk; Raes, Filip; Watkins, Ed; Dalgleish, Tim

    2007-01-01

    The authors review research showing that when recalling autobiographical events, many emotionally disturbed patients summarize categories of events rather than retrieving a single episode. The mechanisms underlying such overgeneral memory are examined, with a focus on M. A. Conway and C. W. Pleydell-Pearce's (2000) hierarchical search model of personal event retrieval. An elaboration of this model is proposed to account for overgeneral memory, focusing on how memory search can be affected by (a) capture and rumination processes, when mnemonic information used in retrieval activates ruminative thinking; (b) functional avoidance, when episodic material threatens to cause affective disturbance; and (c) impairment in executive capacity and control that limits an individual's ability to remain focused on retrieval in the face of distraction. PMID:17201573

  10. Autobiographical memory in adult offspring of traumatized parents with and without posttraumatic stress symptoms.

    PubMed

    Wittekind, Charlotte E; Jelinek, Lena; Moritz, Steffen; Muhtz, Christoph; Berna, Fabrice

    2016-08-30

    The present study examined potential transgenerational effects of trauma on autobiographical memory in adult offspring of elderly participants with and without PTSD symptoms who were exposed to an early trauma during childhood. As traumatization is associated with reduced memory specificity for past events, we hypothesized that offspring of traumatized parents might be exposed to a less elaborative narrative style, which, in turn, might result in less specific autobiographical memories in the offspring. Results show that autobiographical memory specificity did not differ significantly between adult offspring of traumatized elderly participants with PTSD symptoms, without PTSD symptoms, and non-traumatized elderly participants. PMID:27322841

  11. Concealed semantic and episodic autobiographical memory electrified

    PubMed Central

    Ganis, Giorgio; Schendan, Haline E.

    2013-01-01

    Electrophysiology-based concealed information tests (CIT) try to determine whether somebody possesses concealed information about a crime-related item (probe) by comparing event-related potentials (ERPs) between this item and comparison items (irrelevants). Although the broader field is sometimes referred to as “memory detection,” little attention has been paid to the precise type of underlying memory involved. This study begins addressing this issue by examining the key distinction between semantic and episodic memory in the autobiographical domain within a CIT paradigm. This study also addresses the issue of whether multiple repetitions of the items over the course of the session habituate the brain responses. Participants were tested in a 3-stimulus CIT with semantic autobiographical probes (their own date of birth) and episodic autobiographical probes (a secret date learned just before the study). Results dissociated these two memory conditions on several ERP components. Semantic probes elicited a smaller frontal N2 than episodic probes, consistent with the idea that the frontal N2 decreases with greater pre-existing knowledge about the item. Likewise, semantic probes elicited a smaller central N400 than episodic probes. Semantic probes also elicited a larger P3b than episodic probes because of their richer meaning. In contrast, episodic probes elicited a larger late positive complex (LPC) than semantic probes, because of the recent episodic memory associated with them. All these ERPs showed a difference between probes and irrelevants in both memory conditions, except for the N400, which showed a difference only in the semantic condition. Finally, although repetition affected the ERPs, it did not reduce the difference between probes and irrelevants. These findings show that the type of memory associated with a probe has both theoretical and practical importance for CIT research. PMID:23355816

  12. Differential effects of arousal in positive and negative autobiographical memories.

    PubMed

    Ford, Jaclyn Hennessey; Addis, Donna Rose; Giovanello, Kelly S

    2012-01-01

    Autobiographical memories are characterised by a range of emotions and emotional reactions. Recent research has demonstrated that differences in emotional valence (positive vs. negative emotion) and arousal (the degree of emotional intensity) differentially influence the retrieved memory narrative. Although the mnemonic effects of valence and arousal have both been heavily studied, it is currently unclear whether the effects of emotional arousal are equivalent for positive and negative autobiographical events. In the current study, multilevel models were used to examine differential effects of emotional valence and arousal on the richness of autobiographical memory retrieval both between and within subjects. Thirty-four young adults were asked to retrieve personal autobiographical memories associated with popular musical cues and to rate the valence, arousal and richness of these events. The multilevel analyses identified independent influences of valence and intensity upon retrieval characteristics at the within- and between-subject levels. In addition, the within-subject interactions between valence and arousal highlighted differential effects of arousal for positive and negative memories. These findings have important implications for future studies of emotion and memory, highlighting the importance of considering both valence and arousal when examining the role emotion plays in the richness of memory representation. PMID:22873402

  13. Differential Effects of Arousal in Positive and Negative Autobiographical Memories

    PubMed Central

    Ford, Jaclyn Hennessey; Addis, Donna Rose; Giovanello, Kelly S.

    2014-01-01

    Autobiographical memories are characterized by a range of emotions and emotional reactions. Recent research has demonstrated that differences in emotional valence (positive v. negative emotion) and arousal (the degree of emotional intensity) differentially influence the retrieved memory narrative. Although the mnemonic effects of valence and arousal have both been heavily studied, it is currently unclear whether the effects of emotional arousal are equivalent for positive and negative autobiographical events. In the current study, multilevel models were used to examine differential effects emotional valence and arousal on the richness of autobiographical memory retrieval both between and within subjects. Thirty-four young adults were asked to retrieve personal autobiographical memories associated with popular musical cues and to rate the valence, arousal, and richness of these events. The multilevel analyses identified independent influences of valence and intensity upon retrieval characteristics at the within and between subject levels. In addition, the within subject interactions between valence and arousal highlighted differential effects of arousal for positive and negative memories. These findings have important implications for future studies of emotion and memory, highlighting the importance of considering both valence and arousal when examining the role emotion plays in the richness of memory representation. PMID:22873402

  14. Functional neuroimaging of autobiographical memory.

    PubMed

    Cabeza, Roberto; St Jacques, Peggy

    2007-05-01

    Functional neuroimaging studies of autobiographical memory have grown dramatically in recent years. These studies are important because they can investigate the neural correlates of processes that are difficult to study using laboratory stimuli, including: (i) complex constructive processes, (ii) recollective qualities of emotion and vividness, and (iii) remote memory retrieval. Constructing autobiographical memories involves search, monitoring and self-referential processes that are associated with activity in separable prefrontal regions. The contributions of emotion and vividness have been linked to the amygdala and visual cortex respectively. Finally, there is evidence that recent and remote autobiographical memories might activate the hippocampus equally, which has implications for memory-consolidation theories. The rapid development of innovative methods for eliciting personal memories in the scanner provides the opportunity to delve into the functional neuroanatomy of our personal past. PMID:17382578

  15. The role of emotional engagement and mood valence in retrieval fluency of mood incongruent autobiographical memory

    PubMed Central

    Greenberg, Jonathan; Meiran, Nachshon

    2014-01-01

    Background: Retrieval of opposite mood autobiographical memories serves emotion regulation, yet the factors influencing this ability are poorly understood. Methods: Three studies examined the effect of mood valence (sad vs. happy) and degree of emotional engagement on fluency of mood incongruent retrieval by manipulating emotional engagement and examining the effect of emotional film clips on the Fluency of Autobiographical Memory task. Results: Following both sad and happy film clips, participants who received emotionally engaging instructions exhibited a greater recall latency of the first opposite mood memory, and had generated less such memories than those receiving emotionally disengaging instructions (Studies 1 and 2). A happy mood induction resulted in recollection of fewer mood incongruent memories compared to a sad mood induction. Providing emotionally engaging instructions was found to specifically hinder mood incongruent retrieval, without impairing mood congruent retrieval (Study 3). Conclusion: High emotional engagement seems to impair the retrieval of mood incongruent memories. Being in a happy mood may also partially impair such retrieval. Implications regarding emotional regulation are discussed. PMID:24570671

  16. The Nature of Happiness.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Maslow, Abraham H.

    1991-01-01

    Presents previously unpublished paper written by Abraham Maslow in November 1964. Maslow discusses the concept of happiness, suggesting that happiness is a lot more complicated than its standard, hedonistic definition as merely the absence of pain. (Author/ABL)

  17. Mother-child reminiscing and autobiographical memory specificity among preschool-age children.

    PubMed

    Valentino, Kristin; Nuttall, Amy K; Comas, Michelle; McDonnell, Christina G; Piper, Brianna; Thomas, Taylor E; Fanuele, Suzanne

    2014-04-01

    Overgeneral memory (OGM) refers to difficulty in retrieving specific autobiographical memories. The tendency to be overgeneral in autobiographical memory recall is more commonly observed among individuals with emotional disorders compared with those without. Despite significant advances in theory and identification of mechanisms that underlie the etiology of OGM, there has been little integration between normative research on the development of autobiographical memory and research on OGM. Informed by a developmental psychopathology perspective and drawing on normative developmental research on the social construction of autobiographical memory, the current investigation examined whether the elaborative quantity and elaborative quality of maternal reminiscing are predictive of preschool-age children's autobiographical memory specificity. Additionally, this investigation tested whether children's positive self-representations may explain these hypothesized associations. Participants consisted of 95 mother-child dyads. Children's ages ranged between 3.5 and 6 years, and the sample was predominantly low income and of minority race/ethnicity. Dyads participated in a joint reminiscing task about 4 past events, and children participated in assessments of autobiographical memory specificity and self-representations. Results indicated that the elaborative quality, defined by maternal-sensitive guidance and emotional narrative coherence, but not the elaborative quantity, of maternal reminiscing style was significantly associated with children's autobiographical memory specificity. Additionally, there was support for an indirect pathway between maternal reminiscing quality and child memory specificity through children's positive self-representations. Directions for future research are discussed, and potential clinical implications are addressed. PMID:24219316

  18. Differential Neural Activity during Search of Specific and General Autobiographical Memories elicited by Musical Cues

    PubMed Central

    Ford, Jaclyn Hennessey; Addis, Donna Rose; Giovanello, Kelly S.

    2011-01-01

    Previous neuroimaging studies that have examined autobiographical memory specificity have utilized retrieval cues associated with prior searches of the event, potentially changing the retrieval processes being investigated. In the current study, musical cues were used to naturally elicit memories from multiple levels of specificity (i.e., lifetime period, general event, and event-specific). Sixteen young adults participated in a neuroimaging study in which they retrieved autobiographical memories associated with musical cues. These musical cues led to the retrieval of highly emotional memories that had low levels of prior retrieval. Retrieval of all autobiographical memory levels was associated with activity in regions in the autobiographical memory network, specifically the ventromedial prefrontal cortex, posterior cingulate, and right medial temporal lobe. Owing to the use of music, memories from varying levels of specificity were retrieved, allowing for comparison of event memory and abstract personal knowledge, as well as comparison of specific and general event memory. Dorsolateral and dorsomedial prefrontal regions were engaged during event retrieval relative to personal knowledge retrieval, and retrieval of specific event memories was associated with increased activity in the bilateral medial temporal lobe and dorsomedial prefrontal cortex relative to retrieval of general event memories. These results suggest that the initial search processes for memories of different specificity levels preferentially engage different components of the autobiographical memory network. The potential underlying causes of these neural differences are discussed. PMID:21600227

  19. Dilemmas in Teaching Happiness

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barker, Chris; Martin, Brian

    2009-01-01

    There is a burgeoning amount of research into happiness and greatly increased popular attention, so it seems logical to add a course on happiness to the university curriculum. We encountered, in developing and running such a course, a number of dilemmas that the topic of happiness makes especially acute. Should the teacher remain separate from the…

  20. Autobiographical memory specificity in dissociative identity disorder.

    PubMed

    Huntjens, Rafaële J C; Wessel, Ineke; Hermans, Dirk; van Minnen, Agnes

    2014-05-01

    A lack of adequate access to autobiographical knowledge has been related to psychopathology. More specifically, patients suffering from depression or a history of trauma have been found to be characterized by overgeneral memory, in other words, they show a relative difficulty in retrieving a specific event from memory located in time and place. Previous studies of overgeneral memory have not included patients with dissociative disorders. These patients are interesting to consider, as they are hypothesized to have the ability to selectively compartmentalize information linked to negative emotions. This study examined avoidance and overgeneral memory in patients with dissociative identity disorder (DID; n = 12). The patients completed the autobiographical memory test (AMT). Their performance was compared with control groups of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) patients (n = 26), healthy controls (n = 29), and DID simulators (n = 26). Specifically, we compared the performance of separate identity states in DID hypothesized to diverge in the use of avoidance as a coping strategy to deal with negative affect. No significant differences in memory specificity were found between the separate identities in DID. Irrespective of identity state, DID patients were characterized by a lack of memory specificity, which was similar to the lack of memory specificity found in PTSD patients. The converging results for DID and PTSD patients add empirical evidence for the role of overgeneral memory involved in the maintenance of posttraumatic psychopathology. PMID:24886016

  1. Episodic, but not semantic, autobiographical memory is reduced in amnestic mild cognitive impairment

    PubMed Central

    Murphy, Kelly J.; Troyer, Angela K.; Levine, Brian; Moscovitch, Morris

    2008-01-01

    Amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) is characterized by decline in anterograde memory as measured by the ability to learn and remember new information. We investigated whether retrograde memory for autobiographical information was affected by aMCI. Eighteen control (age 66–84 years) and 17 aMCI (age 66–84 years) participants described a personal event from each of five periods across the lifespan. These events were transcribed and scored according to procedures that separate episodic (specific happenings) from semantic (general knowledge) elements of autobiographical memory. Although both groups generated protocols of similar length, the composition of autobiographical recall differentiated the groups. The aMCI group protocols were characterized by reduced episodic and increased semantic information relative to the control group. Both groups showed a similar pattern of recall across time periods, with no evidence that the aMCI group had more difficulty recalling recent, rather than remote, life events. These results indicate that episodic and semantic autobiographical memories are differentially affected by the early brain changes associated with aMCI. Reduced autobiographical episodic memories in aMCI may be the result of medial-temporal-lobe dysfunction, consistent with multiple trace theory, or alternatively, could be related to dysfunction of a wider related network of neocortical structures. In contrast, the preservation of autobiographical semantic memories in aMCI suggests neural systems, such as lateral temporal cortex, that support these memories, may remain relatively intact. PMID:18675285

  2. The involuntary nature of music-evoked autobiographical memories in Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    El Haj, Mohamad; Fasotti, Luciano; Allain, Philippe

    2012-03-01

    The main objective of this paper was to examine the involuntary nature of music-evoked autobiographical memories. For this purpose, young adults, older adults, and patients with a clinical diagnosis of probable Alzheimer's disease (AD) were asked to remember autobiographical events in two conditions: after being exposed to their own chosen music, and in silence. Compared to memories evoked in silence, memories evoked in the "Music" condition were found to be more specific, accompanied by more emotional content and impact on mood, and retrieved faster. In addition, these memories engaged less executive processes. Thus, with all these characteristics and the fact that they are activated by a perceptual cue (i.e., music), music-evoked autobiographic memories have all the features to be considered as involuntary memories. Our paper reveals several characteristics of music-evoked autobiographical memories in AD patients and offers a theoretical background for this phenomenon. PMID:22265372

  3. Reasons for withdrawing belief in vivid autobiographical memories.

    PubMed

    Scoboria, Alan; Boucher, Chantal; Mazzoni, Giuliana

    2015-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that many people hold personal memories for events that they no longer believe occurred. This study examines the reasons that people provide for choosing to reduce autobiographical belief in vividly recollected autobiographical memories. A body of non-believed memories provided by 374 individuals was reviewed to develop a qualitatively derived categorisation system. The final scheme consisted of 8 major categories (in descending order of mention): social feedback, event plausibility, alternative attributions, general memory beliefs, internal event features, consistency with external evidence, views of self/others, personal motivation and numerous sub-categories. Independent raters coded the reports and judged the primary reason that each person provided for withdrawing belief. The nature of each category, frequency of category endorsement, category overlap and phenomenological ratings are presented, following which links to related literature and implications are discussed. This study documents that a wide variety of recollective and non-recollective sources of information influence decision-making about the occurrence of autobiographical events. PMID:24786475

  4. The MAOA gene predicts happiness in women.

    PubMed

    Chen, Henian; Pine, Daniel S; Ernst, Monique; Gorodetsky, Elena; Kasen, Stephanie; Gordon, Kathy; Goldman, David; Cohen, Patricia

    2013-01-10

    Psychologists, quality of life and well-being researchers have grown increasingly interested in understanding the factors that are associated with human happiness. Although twin studies estimate that genetic factors account for 35-50% of the variance in human happiness, knowledge of specific genes is limited. However, recent advances in molecular genetics can now provide a window into neurobiological markers of human happiness. This investigation examines association between happiness and monoamine oxidase A (MAOA) genotype. Data were drawn from a longitudinal study of a population-based cohort, followed for three decades. In women, low expression of MAOA (MAOA-L) was related significantly to greater happiness (0.261 SD increase with one L-allele, 0.522 SD with two L-alleles, P=0.002) after adjusting for the potential effects of age, education, household income, marital status, employment status, mental disorder, physical health, relationship quality, religiosity, abuse history, recent negative life events and self-esteem use in linear regression models. In contrast, no such association was found in men. This new finding may help explain the gender difference on happiness and provide a link between MAOA and human happiness. PMID:22885141

  5. Happiness and Identities.

    PubMed

    Stets, Jan E; Trettevik, Ryan

    2016-07-01

    Previous sociological research has focused on macro forces that are associated with overall happiness with one's life, but it has neglected an analysis of happiness in immediate situations and the micro forces that may shape it. In this study, we examine social structural as well as individual factors that may influence happiness in situations that are morally challenging. Data are examined from an experiment in which satisfying self-interests may involve cheating to get ahead. The results reveal that while distal, structural factors influence happiness for those who do not cheat, proximal, individual factors influence happiness for those who cheat. We discuss how both macro and micro forces may shape happiness in situations. PMID:27194648

  6. Brains creating stories of selves: the neural basis of autobiographical reasoning

    PubMed Central

    Cassol, Helena; Phillips, Christophe; Balteau, Evelyne; Salmon, Eric; Van der Linden, Martial

    2014-01-01

    Personal identity critically depends on the creation of stories about the self and one’s life. The present study investigates the neural substrates of autobiographical reasoning, a process central to the construction of such narratives. During functional magnetic resonance imaging scanning, participants approached a set of personally significant memories in two different ways: in some trials, they remembered the concrete content of the events (autobiographical remembering), whereas in other trials they reflected on the broader meaning and implications of their memories (autobiographical reasoning). Relative to remembering, autobiographical reasoning recruited a left-lateralized network involved in conceptual processing [including the dorsal medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC), inferior frontal gyrus, middle temporal gyrus and angular gyrus]. The ventral MPFC—an area that may function to generate personal/affective meaning—was not consistently engaged during autobiographical reasoning across participants but, interestingly, the activity of this region was modulated by individual differences in interest and willingness to engage in self-reflection. These findings support the notion that autobiographical reasoning and the construction of personal narratives go beyond mere remembering in that they require deriving meaning and value from past experiences. PMID:23482628

  7. Brains creating stories of selves: the neural basis of autobiographical reasoning.

    PubMed

    D'Argembeau, Arnaud; Cassol, Helena; Phillips, Christophe; Balteau, Evelyne; Salmon, Eric; Van der Linden, Martial

    2014-05-01

    Personal identity critically depends on the creation of stories about the self and one's life. The present study investigates the neural substrates of autobiographical reasoning, a process central to the construction of such narratives. During functional magnetic resonance imaging scanning, participants approached a set of personally significant memories in two different ways: in some trials, they remembered the concrete content of the events (autobiographical remembering), whereas in other trials they reflected on the broader meaning and implications of their memories (autobiographical reasoning). Relative to remembering, autobiographical reasoning recruited a left-lateralized network involved in conceptual processing [including the dorsal medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC), inferior frontal gyrus, middle temporal gyrus and angular gyrus]. The ventral MPFC--an area that may function to generate personal/affective meaning--was not consistently engaged during autobiographical reasoning across participants but, interestingly, the activity of this region was modulated by individual differences in interest and willingness to engage in self-reflection. These findings support the notion that autobiographical reasoning and the construction of personal narratives go beyond mere remembering in that they require deriving meaning and value from past experiences. PMID:23482628

  8. Lifespan trends of autobiographical remembering: episodicity and search for meaning.

    PubMed

    Habermas, Tilmann; Diel, Verena; Welzer, Harald

    2013-09-01

    Autobiographical memories of older adults show fewer episodic and more non-episodic elements than those of younger adults. This semantization effect is attributed to a loss of episodic memory ability. However the alternative explanation by an increasing proclivity to search for meaning has not been ruled out to date. To test whether a decrease in episodicity and an increase in meaning-making in autobiographical narratives are related across the lifespan, we used different instructions, one focussing on specific episodes, the other on embedding events in life, in two lifespan samples. A continuous decrease of episodic quality of memory (memory specificity, narrative quality) was confirmed. An increase of search for meaning (interpretation, life story integration) was confirmed only up to middle adulthood. This non-inverse development of episodicity and searching for meaning in older age speaks for an autonomous semantization effect that is not merely due to an increase in interpretative preferences. PMID:23948342

  9. Involuntary autobiographical memories in dysphoric mood: a laboratory study.

    PubMed

    Kvavilashvili, Lia; Schlagman, Simone

    2011-05-01

    The frequency and characteristics of involuntary autobiographical memories were compared in 25 stable dysphoric and 28 non-dysphoric participants, using a new laboratory-based task (Schlagman & Kvavilashvili, 2008). Participants detected infrequent target stimuli (vertical lines) in a simple vigilance task and recorded any involuntary autobiographical memories that came to mind, mostly in response to irrelevant words presented on the screen. Dysphoric participants reported involuntary memories as frequently and as quickly as non-dysphoric participants and their memories were not repetitive intrusive memories of negative or traumatic events. Additional content analysis showed that dysphoric participants did not recall more memories of objectively negative events (e.g., accidents, illnesses, deaths) than non-dysphoric participants. However, significant group differences emerged in terms of a mood congruency effect whereby dysphoric participants rated their memories as more negative than non-dysphoric participants. Moreover, the proportion of negatively rated involuntary memories was related to lower mood ratings at the end of the session in the dysphoric but not in the non-dysphoric group. Finally, groups did not differ on several memory characteristics such as vividness, specificity (high in both groups) and rates of rehearsal (low in both groups). Theoretical and practical implications of these findings for research on depression and autobiographical memory are discussed. PMID:21678152

  10. Reduced specificity of autobiographical memories following a negative mood induction.

    PubMed

    Yeung, Cecilia Au; Dalgleish, Tim; Golden, Ann-Marie; Schartau, Patricia

    2006-10-01

    Reduced autobiographical memory specificity (AMS) to emotional and neutral cue words appears to be a stable cognitive marker of clinical depression. For example, reduced AMS is present in remitted/recovered depressed patients and shows no reliable relationship with current levels of depressed mood in correlational studies. The present study examined whether reduced AMS could be induced in healthy volunteers with no history of depression, using a negative mood manipulation and whether levels of AMS and induced mood were positively correlated. Results showed a reduction in AMS following negative mood induction, compared to a neutral induction, whereas positive mood induction had no effects on AMS. Furthermore, lower happiness following the induction phase correlated positively with reduced AMS, and the extent of happiness reduction from pre- to post-induction correlated positively with reduction in AMS. These results suggest that AMS is, at least in part, a function of current emotion state. The implications for the literature on AMS as a stable marker of clinical depression are discussed. PMID:16356472

  11. Can Seeking Happiness Make People Happy? Paradoxical Effects of Valuing Happiness

    PubMed Central

    Mauss, Iris B.; Tamir, Maya; Anderson, Craig L.; Savino, Nicole S.

    2011-01-01

    Happiness is a key ingredient of well-being. It is thus reasonable to expect that valuing happiness will have beneficial outcomes. We argue that this may not always be the case. Instead, valuing happiness could be self-defeating because the more people value happiness, the more likely they will feel disappointed. This should apply particularly in positive situations, in which people have every reason to be happy. Two studies support this hypothesis. In Study 1, female participants who valued happiness more (vs. less) reported lower happiness when under conditions of low, but not high, life stress. In Study 2, compared to a control group, female participants who were experimentally induced to value happiness reacted less positively to a happy, but not a sad, emotion induction. This effect was mediated by participants’ disappointment at their own feelings. Paradoxically, therefore, valuing happiness may lead people to be less happy just when happiness is within reach. PMID:21517168

  12. Autobiographical Memory and Suicide Attempts in Schizophrenia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pettersen, Kenneth; Rydningen, Nora Nord; Christensen, Tore Buer; Walby, Fredrik A.

    2010-01-01

    According to the cry of pain model of suicidal behavior, an over-general autobiographical memory function is often found in suicide attempters. The model has received empirical support in several studies, mainly of depressed patients. The present study investigated whether deficits in autobiographical memory may be associated with an increased…

  13. Laboratory-Based and Autobiographical Retrieval Tasks Differ Substantially in Their Neural Substrates

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McDermott, Kathleen B.; Szpunar, Karl K.; Christ, Shawn E.

    2009-01-01

    In designing experiments to investigate retrieval of event memory, researchers choose between utilizing laboratory-based methods (in which to-be-remembered materials are presented to participants) and autobiographical approaches (in which the to-be-remembered materials are events from the participant's pre-experimental life). In practice, most…

  14. Happiness, Despair and Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roberts, Peter

    2013-01-01

    In today's world we appear to place a premium on happiness. Happiness is often portrayed, directly or indirectly, as one of the key aims of education. To suggest that education is concerned with promoting unhappiness or even despair would, in many contexts, seem outlandish. This paper challenges these widely held views. Focusing on the work…

  15. Child Wellness and Happiness

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rettew, David C.

    2009-01-01

    Wellness and happiness should be considered in the clinical treatment of child and adolescent psychiatry, in addition with thinking about illness. Meanwhile, various studies on child and adolescent psychiatry,which includes an article from the "Journal of Happiness Studies," are discussed.

  16. Autobiographical memory bias in social anxiety.

    PubMed

    Krans, Julie; de Bree, June; Bryant, Richard A

    2014-01-01

    In social anxiety the psychological self is closely related to the feared stimulus. Socially anxious individuals are, by definition, concerned about how the self is perceived and evaluated by others. As autobiographical memory is strongly related to views of the self it follows that biases in autobiographical memory play an important role in social anxiety. In the present study high (n = 19) and low (n = 29) socially anxious individuals were compared on autobiographical memory bias, current goals, and self-discrepancy. Individuals high in social anxiety showed a bias towards recalling more negative and more social anxiety-related autobiographical memories, reported more current goals related to overcoming social anxiety, and showed larger self-discrepancies. The pattern of results is largely in line with earlier research in individuals with PTSD and complicated grief. This suggests that the relation between autobiographical memory bias and the self is a potentially valuable trans-diagnostic factor. PMID:24111655

  17. Dissociating appraisals of accuracy and recollection in autobiographical remembering.

    PubMed

    Scoboria, Alan; Pascal, Lisa

    2016-07-01

    Recent studies of metamemory appraisals implicated in autobiographical remembering have established distinct roles for judgments of occurrence, recollection, and accuracy for past events. In studies involving everyday remembering, measures of recollection and accuracy correlate highly (>.85). Thus although their measures are structurally distinct, such high correspondence might suggest conceptual redundancy. This article examines whether recollection and accuracy dissociate when studying different types of autobiographical event representations. In Study 1, 278 participants described a believed memory, a nonbelieved memory, and a believed-not-remembered event and rated each on occurrence, recollection, accuracy, and related covariates. In Study 2, 876 individuals described and rated 1 of these events, as well as an event about which they were uncertain about their memory. Confirmatory structural equation modeling indicated that the measurement dissociation between occurrence, recollection and accuracy held across all types of events examined. Relative to believed memories, the relationship between recollection and belief in accuracy was meaningfully lower for the other event types. These findings support the claim that recollection and accuracy arise from distinct underlying mechanisms. (PsycINFO Database Record PMID:26866659

  18. Chronologically organized structure in autobiographical memory search

    PubMed Central

    Brunec, Iva K.; Chadwick, Martin J.; Javadi, Amir-Homayoun; Guo, Ling; Malcolm, Charlotte P.; Spiers, Hugo J.

    2015-01-01

    Each of us has a rich set of autobiographical memories that provides us with a coherent story of our lives. These memories are known to be highly structured both thematically and temporally. However, it is not known how we naturally tend to explore the mental timeline of our memories. Here we developed a novel cued retrieval paradigm in order to investigate the temporal element of memory search. We found that, when asked to search for memories in the days immediately surrounding a salient cued event, participants displayed a marked set of temporal biases in their search patterns. Specifically, participants first tended to jump back in time and retrieve memories from the day prior to the cued event. Following this they then transitioned forward in time, and retrieved memories from the day after the cued event. This pattern of results replicated in a second experiment with a much larger group of participants, and a different method of cueing the memories. We argue that this set of temporal biases is consistent with memory search conforming to a temporally ordered narrative structure. PMID:25859236

  19. Chronologically organized structure in autobiographical memory search.

    PubMed

    Brunec, Iva K; Chadwick, Martin J; Javadi, Amir-Homayoun; Guo, Ling; Malcolm, Charlotte P; Spiers, Hugo J

    2015-01-01

    Each of us has a rich set of autobiographical memories that provides us with a coherent story of our lives. These memories are known to be highly structured both thematically and temporally. However, it is not known how we naturally tend to explore the mental timeline of our memories. Here we developed a novel cued retrieval paradigm in order to investigate the temporal element of memory search. We found that, when asked to search for memories in the days immediately surrounding a salient cued event, participants displayed a marked set of temporal biases in their search patterns. Specifically, participants first tended to jump back in time and retrieve memories from the day prior to the cued event. Following this they then transitioned forward in time, and retrieved memories from the day after the cued event. This pattern of results replicated in a second experiment with a much larger group of participants, and a different method of cueing the memories. We argue that this set of temporal biases is consistent with memory search conforming to a temporally ordered narrative structure. PMID:25859236

  20. The effects of rehearsal on the functional neuroanatomy of episodic autobiographical and semantic remembering: an fMRI study

    PubMed Central

    Svoboda, Eva; Levine, Brian

    2009-01-01

    This study examined the effects of rehearsal on the neural substrates supporting episodic autobiographical and semantic memory. Stimuli were collected prospectively using audio recordings, thereby bringing under experimental control ecologically-valid, naturalistic autobiographical stimuli. Participants documented both autobiographical and semantic stimuli over a period of 6 to 8 months, followed by a rehearsal manipulation during the three days preceding scanning. During fMRI scanning participants were exposed to recordings that they were hearing for the first, second or eighth time. Rehearsal increased the rated vividness with which information was remembered, particularly for autobiographical events. Neuroimaging findings revealed rehearsal-related suppression of activation in regions supporting episodic autobiographical and semantic memory. Episodic autobiographical and semantic memory produced distinctly different patterns of regional activation that held even after eight repetitions. Region of interest analyses further indicated a functional anatomical dissociation in response to rehearsal and memory conditions. These findings revealed that the hippocampus was specifically engaged by episodic autobiographical memory, whereas both memory conditions engaged the parahippocampal cortex. Our data suggest that when retrieval cues are potent enough to engage a vivid episodic recollection, the episodic/semantic dissociation within medial temporal lobe structures endure even with multiple stimulus repetitions. These findings support the Multiple Trace Theory (MTT) which predicts that the hippocampus is engaged in the retrieval of rich episodic recollection regardless of repeated reactivation such as that occurring with the passage of time. PMID:19279244

  1. Overgeneral autobiographical memory in children of depressed mothers.

    PubMed

    Woody, Mary L; Burkhouse, Katie L; Gibb, Brandon E

    2015-01-01

    The goal of this study was to examine overgeneral autobiographical memory in a population at-risk for depression (i.e., children of depressed mothers). We predicted that children of depressed mothers would display less-specific memories than children of non-depressed mothers and that these results would be observed among children with no prior history of depression themselves. Participants in this study were children (age 8-14; 50% girls, 83% Caucasian) of mothers with (n = 103) or without (n = 120) a history of major depressive disorder during the child's life. Mothers' and children's diagnoses were confirmed with a diagnostic interview, and children completed the Autobiographical Memory Test and a measure of depressive symptoms. We found that children of depressed mothers, compared to children of non-depressed mothers, recalled less-specific memories in response to negative cue words but not positive cue words. Importantly, these results were maintained even when we statistically controlled for the influence of children's current depressive symptom levels and excluded children with currently depressed mothers. These results suggest that overgeneral autobiographical memory for negative events may serve as a marker of depression risk among high-risk children with no prior depression history. PMID:24580414

  2. Overgeneral Autobiographical Memory in Children of Depressed Mothers

    PubMed Central

    Woody, Mary L.; Burkhouse, Katie L.; Gibb, Brandon E.

    2014-01-01

    The goal of this study was to examine overgeneral autobiographical memory in a population at-risk for depression (i.e. children of depressed mothers). We predicted that children of depressed mothers would display less specific memories than children of nondepressed mothers and that these results would be observed among children with no prior history of depression themselves. Participants in this study were children (age 8–14; 50% girls, 83% Caucasian) of mothers with (n = 103) or without (n = 120) a history of major depressive disorder during the child’s life. Mothers’ and children’s diagnoses were confirmed with a diagnostic interview, and children completed the Autobiographical Memory Test and a measure of depressive symptoms. We found that children of depressed mothers, compared to children of nondepressed mothers, recalled less specific memories in response to negative cue words but not positive cue words. Importantly, these results were maintained even when we statistically controlled for the influence of children’s current depressive symptom levels and excluded children with currently depressed mothers. These results suggest that overgeneral autobiographical memory for negative events may serve as a marker of depression risk among high-risk children with no prior depression history. PMID:24580414

  3. On the prevalence of directly retrieved autobiographical memories.

    PubMed

    Uzer, Tugba; Lee, Peter J; Brown, Norman R

    2012-09-01

    In this study, we used process measures to understand how people recall autobiographical memories in response to different word cues. In Experiment 1, participants provided verbal protocols when cued by object and emotion words. Participants also reported whether memories had come directly to mind. The self-reports and independent ratings of the verbal protocols indicated that directly recalled memories are much faster and more frequent than generated memories and are more prevalent when cued by objects than emotions. Experiment 2 replicated these results without protocols to eliminate any demand characteristics or output interference associated with the protocol method. In Experiment 3, we obtained converging results using a different method for assessing retrieval strategies by asking participants to assess the amount of information required to retrieve memories. The greater proportion of fast direct retrievals when memories are cued by objects accounts for reaction time differences between object and emotion cues, and not the commonly accepted explanation based on ease of retrieval. We argue for a dual-strategies approach that disputes generation as the canonical form of autobiographical memory retrieval and discuss the implication of these findings for the representation of personal events in autobiographical memory. PMID:22545602

  4. Highly Superior Autobiographical Memory: Quality and Quantity of Retention Over Time

    PubMed Central

    LePort, Aurora K. R.; Stark, Shauna M.; McGaugh, James L.; Stark, Craig E. L.

    2016-01-01

    Individuals who have Highly Superior Autobiographical Memory (HSAM) are able to recall, with considerable accuracy, details of daily experiences that occurred over many previous decades. The present study parametrically investigates the quantity and quality of details of autobiographical memories acquired 1-week, 1-month, 1-year, and 10-years prior in HSAMs and controls. In addition, we tested the consistency of details provided at the 1-week delay by testing the subjects 1 month later with a surprise assessment. At the 1-week delay, HSAMs and controls recalled an equivalent number of events. In contrast, HSAM recall performance was superior at more remote delays, with remarkable consistency following a 1-month delay. Further, we revealed a relationship between the consistency of recall and HSAMs’ obsessive–compulsive tendencies. These data suggest that HSAMs experience normal encoding, yet enhanced consolidation and later recall of autobiographical events. PMID:26834661

  5. Autobiographical Memory Performance in Alzheimer's Disease Depends on Retrieval Frequency.

    PubMed

    Müller, Stephan; Mychajliw, Christian; Reichert, Carolin; Melcher, Tobias; Leyhe, Thomas

    2016-04-18

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by memory disturbances primarily caused by pathogenic mechanisms affecting medial temporal lobe structures. As proposed by current theories of memory formation, this decrease is mediated by the age of the acquired knowledge. However, they cannot fully explain specific patterns of retrograde amnesia in AD. In the current study we examined an alternative approach and investigated whether the extent and severity of retrograde amnesia in AD is mediated by the frequency of memory retrieval or whether it depends on the mere age of knowledge. We compared recall of autobiographical incidents from three life periods in patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI), patients with early dementia of Alzheimer type (eDAT), and healthy control (HC) individuals using the Autobiographical Memory Interview. Retrieval frequency was operationalized by a paired comparison analysis. In contrast to HC individuals, recall of autobiographical incidents was impaired in patients with aMCI and eDAT following Ribot's gradient, with a reduced memory loss for remote compared to more recent life events. However, there was a strong effect of retrieval frequency on memory performance with frequently retrieved incidents memorized in more detail than less frequently retrieved episodes. Remote memories were recalled more often than recent ones. These findings suggest that more frequently retrieved autobiographical memories generally become more independent of the hippocampal complex and might thus be better protected against early hippocampal damage related to AD. Hence, the extent of retrograde amnesia in AD appears mainly mediated by the frequency of memory retrieval, which could plausibly explain why cognitive activity can effectively delay the onset of memory decline in AD. PMID:27104895

  6. Does Happiness Promote Career Success?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boehm, Julia K.; Lyubomirsky, Sonja

    2008-01-01

    Past research has demonstrated a relationship between happiness and workplace success. For example, compared with their less happy peers, happy people earn more money, display superior performance, and perform more helpful acts. Researchers have often assumed that an employee is happy and satisfied because he or she is successful. In this article,…

  7. The history of happiness.

    PubMed

    Stearns, Peter N

    2012-01-01

    In the 18th century, the Enlightenment ushered in the notion that happiness was the attainment of a worthy life. Since then the pursuit of happiness has spread to every aspect of behavior, from religion and politics to work and parenting. Today the happiness imperative creates pressures that, paradoxically, can make us miserable. Sadness is often mistaken for a pathology. Understanding the cultural commitment to good cheer as an artifact of modern history, not as an inherent feature of the human condition, opens new opportunities for understanding key facets of our social and personal experience. PMID:22299510

  8. [Identity and narration: autobiographical quests].

    PubMed

    Arfuch, Leonor

    2013-01-01

    This paper aims to tackle the subtle relation between autobiographical narratives and identity construction, from a non essentialist conception of identity. In a perspective that articulates philosophy of language, psychoanalysis, semiotics and literary critique, we posit the concept of biographical space as an analytical instrument to make a critical update of the reconfiguration of identities and subjectivities in contemporary culture, marked by the predominance of the biographical, the private and a kind of "public intimacy". This look is more symptomatic than descriptive: it intends to account for the rise of auto/biographical narratives and life-stories, from canonic genres to their multiple derivations in the media, social networks and the most diverse artistic practices, a phenomenon that seems to reaffirm the notion of narrative identities by Ricoeur. Our analysis here, from an ethic, aesthetic and political point of view, will focus on two visual arts experiences that have recently taken place for the first time in Buenos Aires: Christian Boltanski's and Tracey Emin's, solo exhibitions, each of them with a different biographical approach. PMID:24251298

  9. Structural and functional associations of the rostral anterior cingulate cortex with subjective happiness.

    PubMed

    Matsunaga, Masahiro; Kawamichi, Hiroaki; Koike, Takahiko; Yoshihara, Kazufumi; Yoshida, Yumiko; Takahashi, Haruka K; Nakagawa, Eri; Sadato, Norihiro

    2016-07-01

    Happiness is one of the most fundamental human goals, which has led researchers to examine the source of individual happiness. Happiness has usually been discussed regarding two aspects (a temporary positive emotion and a trait-like long-term sense of being happy) that are interrelated; for example, individuals with a high level of trait-like subjective happiness tend to rate events as more pleasant. In this study, we hypothesized that the interaction between the two aspects of happiness could be explained by the interaction between structure and function in certain brain regions. Thus, we first assessed the association between gray matter density (GMD) of healthy participants and trait-like subjective happiness using voxel-based morphometry (VBM). Further, to assess the association between the GMD and brain function, we conducted functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) using the task of positive emotion induction (imagination of several emotional life events). VBM indicated that the subjective happiness was positively correlated with the GMD of the rostral anterior cingulate cortex (rACC). Functional MRI demonstrated that experimentally induced temporal happy feelings were positively correlated with subjective happiness level and rACC activity. The rACC response to positive events was also positively correlated with its GMD. These results provide convergent structural and functional evidence that the rACC is related to happiness and suggest that the interaction between structure and function in the rACC may explain the trait-state interaction in happiness. PMID:27085503

  10. Involuntary memory chains: what do they tell us about autobiographical memory organisation?

    PubMed

    Mace, John H; Clevinger, Amanda M; Bernas, Ronan S

    2013-04-01

    Involuntary memory chains are spontaneous recollections of the past that occur as a sequence of associated memories. This memory phenomenon has provided some insights into the nature of associations in autobiographical memory. For example, it has shown that conceptually associated memories (memories sharing similar content, such as the same people or themes) are more prevalent than general-event associated memories (memories from the same extended event period, such as a trip). This finding has suggested that conceptual associations are a central organisational principle in the autobiographical memory system. This study used involuntary memories chains to gain additional insights into the associative structure of autobiographical memory. Among the main results, we found that general-event associations have higher rates of forgetting than conceptual associations, and in long memory chains (i.e., those with more than two memories) conceptually associated memories were more likely to activate memories in their associative class, whereas general-event associated memories were less likely to activate memories in their associative class. We interpret the results as further evidence that conceptual associations are a major organising principle in the autobiographical memory system, and attempt to explain why general-event associations have shorter lifespans than conceptual associations. PMID:23016577

  11. Field visual perspective during autobiographical memory recall is less frequent among patients with schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Potheegadoo, Jevita; Berna, Fabrice; Cuervo-Lombard, Christine; Danion, Jean-Marie

    2013-10-01

    There is growing interest in clinical research regarding the visual perspective adopted during memory retrieval, because it reflects individuals' self-attitude towards their memories of past personal events. Several autobiographical memory deficits, including low specificity of personal memories, have been identified in schizophrenia, but visual perspective during autobiographical memory retrieval has not yet been investigated in patients. The aim of this study was therefore to investigate the visual perspective with which patients visualize themselves when recalling autobiographical memories and to assess the specificity of their memories which is a major determinant of visual perspective. Thirty patients with schizophrenia and 30 matched controls recalled personal events from 4 life periods. After each recall, they were asked to report their visual perspective (Field or Observer) associated with the event. The specificity of their memories was assessed by independent raters. Our results showed that patients reported significantly fewer Field perspectives than comparison participants. Patients' memories, whether recalled with Field or Observer perspectives, were less specific and less detailed. Our results indicate that patients with schizophrenia adopt Field perspectives less frequently than comparison participants, and that this may contribute to a weakened sense of the individual of being an actor of his past events, and hence to a reduced sense of self. They suggest that this may be related to low specificity of memories and that all the important aspects involved in re-experiencing autobiographical events are impaired in patients with schizophrenia. PMID:23932447

  12. Autobiographical Writing in the Technical Writing Course

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gellis, Mark

    2011-01-01

    Professionals in the workplace are rarely asked to write autobiographical essays. Such essays, however, are an excellent tool for helping students explore their growth as professionals. This article explores the use of such essays in a technical writing class.

  13. Effects of Saccadic Bilateral Eye Movements on Episodic and Semantic Autobiographical Memory Fluency

    PubMed Central

    Parker, Andrew; Parkin, Adam; Dagnall, Neil

    2013-01-01

    Performing a sequence of fast saccadic horizontal eye movements has been shown to facilitate performance on a range of cognitive tasks, including the retrieval of episodic memories. One explanation for these effects is based on the hypothesis that saccadic eye movements increase hemispheric interaction, and that such interactions are important for particular types of memory. The aim of the current research was to assess the effect of horizontal saccadic eye movements on the retrieval of both episodic autobiographical memory (event/incident based memory) and semantic autobiographical memory (fact based memory) over recent and more distant time periods. It was found that saccadic eye movements facilitated the retrieval of episodic autobiographical memories (over all time periods) but not semantic autobiographical memories. In addition, eye movements did not enhance the retrieval of non-autobiographical semantic memory. This finding illustrates a dissociation between the episodic and semantic characteristics of personal memory and is considered within the context of hemispheric contributions to episodic memory performance. PMID:24133435

  14. 'Language of the past' - Exploring past tense disruption during autobiographical narration in neurodegenerative disorders.

    PubMed

    Irish, Muireann; Kamminga, Jody; Addis, Donna Rose; Crain, Stephen; Thornton, Rosalind; Hodges, John R; Piguet, Olivier

    2016-09-01

    Compromised retrieval of autobiographical memory (ABM) is well established in neurodegenerative disorders. The recounting of autobiographical events is inextricably linked to linguistic knowledge, yet no study to date has investigated whether tense use during autobiographical narration is disrupted in dementia syndromes. This study investigated the incidence of correct past tense use during ABM narration in patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD, n = 10) and semantic dementia (SD, n = 10) in comparison with healthy older Controls (n = 10). Autobiographical narratives were analysed for episodic content (internal/external) and classified according to tense use (past/present). Across both patient groups, use of the past tense was significantly compromised relative to Controls, with increased levels of off-target present tense verbs observed. Voxel-based morphometry analyses based on structural MRI revealed differential associations between past tense use and regions of grey matter intensity in the brain. Bilateral temporal cortices were implicated in the SD group, whereas frontal, lateral, and medial temporal regions including the right hippocampus emerged in AD. This preliminary study provides the first demonstration of the disruption of specific linguistic constructs during autobiographical narration in AD and SD. Future studies are warranted to clarify at what point in the disease trajectory such deficits in tense use emerge, and whether these deficits are a product or contributing factor in memory disruption in these syndromes. PMID:26014271

  15. Autobiographical memory functioning among abused, neglected, and nonmaltreated children: The overgeneral memory effect

    PubMed Central

    Valentino, Kristin; Toth, Sheree L.; Cicchetti, Dante

    2012-01-01

    Background This investigation addresses whether there are differences in the form and content of autobiographical memory recall as a function of maltreatment, and examines the roles of self-system functioning and psychopathology in autobiographical memory processes. Methods Autobiographical memory for positive and negative nontraumatic events was evaluated among abused, neglected, and nonmaltreated school-aged children. Results Abused children’s memories were more overgeneral and contained more negative self-representations than did those of the nonmaltreated children. Negative self-representations and depression were significantly related to overgeneral memory, but did not mediate the relation between abuse and overgeneral memory. Conclusions The meaning of these findings for models of memory and for the development of overgenerality is emphasized. Moreover, the clinical implications of the current research are discussed. PMID:19490313

  16. Cross-cultural adaptation and validation of the episodic autobiographic memory interview for Brazilian Portuguese.

    PubMed

    Rodrigues, Guilherme R; Oliveira, Daniel S; Foss, Maria P; Takayanagui, Osvaldo M

    2015-08-01

    Episodic memory enables the storage of personal events with specific temporal and spatial details, and their retrieval through a sensory experience, usually visual, which is called autonoetic consciousness. While, in Brazil, several scales for the evaluation of anterograde episodic memory have been validated, there is not yet an instrument to assess the episodic autobiographical memory. The aim of this study is thus to make a cross-cultural adaptation and validation of the Episodic Autobiographic Memory Interview (EAMI) for Brazilian Portuguese. Altogether, 11 patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD) and 10 healthy controls (CTs) were evaluated. EAMI scores for AD patients were lower than those of CTs, and these scores also correlated positively with the Remember-Know coefficient. The intraclass correlation coefficient indicated a good inter-rater reliability. The Portuguese version of EAMI showed a good reliability and validity, which suggests that it is a useful tool for evaluation of autobiographical memory in Brazilian patients. PMID:26222359

  17. Happiness, Psychology, and Degrees of Realism

    PubMed Central

    Lavazza, Andrea

    2016-01-01

    The recent emphasis on a realist ontology that cannot be overshadowed by subjectivist or relativist perspectives seems to have a number of consequences for psychology as well. My attempt here is to analyse the relationship between happiness as a state of the individual and the states of the external world and the brain events related to (or, in some hypotheses, causally responsible for) its occurrence. It can be maintained that different degrees of realism are suitable to describe the states of happiness and this fact might have relevant psychological implications, namely for the so-called positive psychology. This is especially true now that there are methods available to induce subjective states of happiness unrelated to the external conditions usually taken to be linked to such states. PMID:27536261

  18. Happiness, Psychology, and Degrees of Realism.

    PubMed

    Lavazza, Andrea

    2016-01-01

    The recent emphasis on a realist ontology that cannot be overshadowed by subjectivist or relativist perspectives seems to have a number of consequences for psychology as well. My attempt here is to analyse the relationship between happiness as a state of the individual and the states of the external world and the brain events related to (or, in some hypotheses, causally responsible for) its occurrence. It can be maintained that different degrees of realism are suitable to describe the states of happiness and this fact might have relevant psychological implications, namely for the so-called positive psychology. This is especially true now that there are methods available to induce subjective states of happiness unrelated to the external conditions usually taken to be linked to such states. PMID:27536261

  19. Rumination and overgeneral autobiographical memory in adolescents: an integration of cognitive vulnerabilities to depression.

    PubMed

    Hamlat, Elissa J; Connolly, Samantha L; Hamilton, Jessica L; Stange, Jonathan P; Abramson, Lyn Y; Alloy, Lauren B

    2015-04-01

    During adolescence, rates of depression dramatically increase and girls become twice as likely as boys to develop depression. Research suggests that overgeneral autobiographical memory and rumination are vulnerability factors for depressive symptoms in adolescence that may be triggered by stressful life events. The current longitudinal study included 160 early adolescents (Mage = 12.44 years, 60.0 % African American, 40.0 % Caucasian, and 56.2 % female). At baseline, adolescents completed measures of current depressive symptoms, rumination, and specificity of autobiographical memories. Approximately 9 months later, the adolescents completed measures of current depressive symptoms and stressful life events that had occurred between baseline and follow-up. Analyses indicated that girls with more overgeneral autobiographical memories in combination with higher levels of rumination were most vulnerable to experiencing increases in depressive symptoms following stressful life events. Additionally, retrieving more specific autobiographical memories appeared to buffer against the impact of negative life events on depressive symptoms among both boys and girls. Memory specificity may play a protective role in depression risk, suggesting that memory specificity training interventions may prove beneficial for adolescents. PMID:24449170

  20. Rumination and Overgeneral Autobiographical Memory in Adolescents: An Integration of Cognitive Vulnerabilities to Depression

    PubMed Central

    Connolly, Samantha L.; Hamilton, Jessica L.; Stange, Jonathan P.; Abramson, Lyn Y.; Alloy, Lauren B.

    2014-01-01

    During adolescence, rates of depression dramatically increase and girls become twice as likely as boys to develop depression. Research suggests that overgeneral autobiographical memory and rumination are vulnerability factors for depressive symptoms in adolescence that may be triggered by stressful life events. The current longitudinal study included 160 early adolescents (Mage = 12.44 years, 60.0 % African American, 40.0 % Caucasian, and 56.2 % female). At baseline, adolescents completed measures of current depressive symptoms, rumination, and specificity of autobiographical memories. Approximately 9 months later, the adolescents completed measures of current depressive symptoms and stressful life events that had occurred between baseline and follow-up. Analyses indicated that girls with more overgeneral autobiographical memories in combination with higher levels of rumination were most vulnerable to experiencing increases in depressive symptoms following stressful life events. Additionally, retrieving more specific autobiographical memories appeared to buffer against the impact of negative life events on depressive symptoms among both boys and girls. Memory specificity may play a protective role in depression risk, suggesting that memory specificity training interventions may prove beneficial for adolescents. PMID:24449170

  1. Lighting Up: Young Adults' Autobiographical Accounts of Their First Smoking Experiences.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Delorme, Denise E.; Kreshel, Peggy J.; Reid, Leonard N.

    2003-01-01

    Explored young adults' autobiographical memories of their first consumption of cigarettes using a form of life history. Analysis of 276 college students' first-person essays indicated that the first-use experience was a symbolically significant and enduring life event. Participants provided rich, detailed recollections about the contextual nature…

  2. Differential Neural Activity during Search of Specific and General Autobiographical Memories Elicited by Musical Cues

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ford, Jaclyn Hennessey; Addis, Donna Rose; Giovanello, Kelly S.

    2011-01-01

    Previous neuroimaging studies that have examined autobiographical memory specificity have utilized retrieval cues associated with prior searches of the event, potentially changing the retrieval processes being investigated. In the current study, musical cues were used to naturally elicit memories from multiple levels of specificity (i.e., lifetime…

  3. On Telling the Whole Story: Facts and Interpretations in Autobiographical Memory Narratives from Childhood through Midadolescence

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pasupathi, Monisha; Wainryb, Cecilia

    2010-01-01

    This article examines age differences from childhood through middle adolescence in the extent to which children include factual and interpretive information in constructing autobiographical memory narratives. Factual information is defined as observable or perceptible information available to all individuals who experience a given event, while…

  4. Long-Term Autobiographical Memory for Legal Involvement: Individual and Sociocontextual Predictors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Quas, Jodi A.; Alexander, Kristen Weede; Goodman, Gail S.; Ghetti, Simona; Edelstein, Robin S.; Redlich, Allison

    2010-01-01

    We examined adults' long-term autobiographical memory for a dramatic life event-participating as a child victim in a criminal prosecution because of alleged sexual abuse. The study is unique in several ways, including that we had extensive documentation concerning the sexual abuse allegations, the children's involvement in their legal case, and…

  5. Emotion Knowledge and Autobiographical Memory across the Preschool Years: A Cross-Cultural Longitudinal Investigation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wang, Qi

    2008-01-01

    Knowledge of emotion situations facilitates the interpretation, processing, and organization of significant personal event information and thus may be an important contributor to the development of autobiographical memory. This longitudinal study tested the hypothesis in a cross-cultural context. The participants were native Chinese children,…

  6. Self-Disorders in Individuals with Autistic Traits: Contribution of Reduced Autobiographical Reasoning Capacities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berna, Fabrice; Göritz, Anja S.; Schröder, Johanna; Coutelle, Romain; Danion, Jean-Marie; Cuervo-Lombard, Christine V.; Moritz, Steffen

    2016-01-01

    The present web-based study (N = 840) aimed to illuminate the cognitive mechanisms underlying self-disorders in autism. Initially, participants selected three self-defining memories. Then, we assessed their capacity to give meaning to these events (i.e., meaning making), their tendency to scrutinize autobiographical memory to better understand…

  7. Infants' discrimination of happy and sad music.

    PubMed

    Flom, Ross; Gentile, Douglas A; Pick, Anne D

    2008-12-01

    Infants can detect information specifying affect in infant- and adult-directed speech, familiar and unfamiliar facial expressions, and in point-light displays of facial expressions. We examined 3-, 5-, 7-, and 9-month-olds' discrimination of musical excerpts judged by adults and preschoolers as happy and sad. In Experiment 1, using an infant-controlled habituation procedure, 3-, 5-, 7-, and 9-month-olds heard three musical excerpts that were rated as either happy or sad. Following habituation, infants were presented with two new musical excerpts from the other affect group. Nine-month-olds discriminated the musical excerpts rated as affectively different. Five- and seven-month-olds discriminated the happy and sad excerpts when they were habituated to sad excerpts but not when they were habituated to happy excerpts. Three-month-olds showed no evidence of discriminating the sad and happy excerpts. In Experiment 2, 5-, 7-, and 9-month-olds were presented with two new musical excerpts from the same affective group as the habituation excerpts. At no age did infants discriminate these novel, yet affectively similar, musical excerpts. In Experiment 3, we examined 5-, 7-, and 9-month-olds' discrimination of individual excerpts rated as affectively similar. Only the 9-month-olds discriminated the affectively similar individual excerpts. Results are discussed in terms of infants' ability to discriminate affect across a variety of events and its relevance for later social-communicative development. PMID:18502515

  8. How to Live a Happy Life

    MedlinePlus

    ... from? Born Happy? Part of happiness depends on personality. Some people have a naturally happy nature. We ... and optimistic most of the time. Their upbeat personalities make it easier for them to be happy. ...

  9. Happiness & Health: The Biological Factors- Systematic Review Article.

    PubMed

    Dfarhud, Dariush; Malmir, Maryam; Khanahmadi, Mohammad

    2014-11-01

    Happiness underlying factors are considerable from two dimensions: endogenic factors (biological, cognitive, personality and ethical sub-factors) and exogenic factors (behavioral, socialcultural, economical, geographical, life events and aesthetics sub-factors). Among all endogenic factors, biological sub-factors are the significant predictors of happiness. Existence of significant differences in temperament and happiness of infants is an indicator of biological influences. Therefore, this study aimed to consider biological factors that underlie happiness. At the first, all of the biological factors in relation with happiness were searched from following websites: PubMed, Wiley& Sons, Science direct (1990-2014). Then, the articles divided into five sub-groups (genetic, brain and neurotransmitters, endocrinology and hormones, physical health, morphology and physical attractiveness). Finally, a systematic review performed based on existing information. Results of studies on genetic factors indicated an average effectiveness of genetic about 35 -50 percent on happiness. In spite of difficulties in finding special genes, several genes distributed to emotion and mood. Neuroscience studies showed that some part of brain (e.g. amygdala, hipocamp and limbic system) and neurotransmitters (e.g. dopamine, serotonin, norepinefrine and endorphin) play a role in control of happiness. A few studies pointed to the role of cortisol and adrenaline (adrenal gland) and oxitocin (pituitary gland) in controlling happiness. Physical health and typology also concluded in most related studies to have a significant role in happiness. Therefore, according to previous research, it can be said that biological and health factors are critical in underlying happiness and its role in happiness is undeniable. PMID:26060713

  10. Happiness & Health: The Biological Factors- Systematic Review Article

    PubMed Central

    DFARHUD, Dariush; MALMIR, Maryam; KHANAHMADI, Mohammad

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Happiness underlying factors are considerable from two dimensions: endogenic factors (biological, cognitive, personality and ethical sub-factors) and exogenic factors (behavioral, socialcultural, economical, geographical, life events and aesthetics sub-factors). Among all endogenic factors, biological sub-factors are the significant predictors of happiness. Existence of significant differences in temperament and happiness of infants is an indicator of biological influences. Therefore, this study aimed to consider biological factors that underlie happiness. At the first, all of the biological factors in relation with happiness were searched from following websites: PubMed, Wiley& Sons, Science direct (1990–2014). Then, the articles divided into five sub-groups (genetic, brain and neurotransmitters, endocrinology and hormones, physical health, morphology and physical attractiveness). Finally, a systematic review performed based on existing information. Results of studies on genetic factors indicated an average effectiveness of genetic about 35 -50 percent on happiness. In spite of difficulties in finding special genes, several genes distributed to emotion and mood. Neuroscience studies showed that some part of brain (e.g. amygdala, hipocamp and limbic system) and neurotransmitters (e.g. dopamine, serotonin, norepinefrine and endorphin) play a role in control of happiness. A few studies pointed to the role of cortisol and adrenaline (adrenal gland) and oxitocin (pituitary gland) in controlling happiness. Physical health and typology also concluded in most related studies to have a significant role in happiness. Therefore, according to previous research, it can be said that biological and health factors are critical in underlying happiness and its role in happiness is undeniable. PMID:26060713

  11. Clinical ethics and happiness.

    PubMed

    Devettere, R J

    1993-02-01

    Most contemporary accounts of clinical ethics do not explain why clinicians should be ethical. Those few that do attempt an explanation usually claim that clinicians should be ethical because ethical behavior provides an important good for the patient--better care. Both these approaches ignore the customary traditional reason for being ethical, namely, the good of the moral agent. This good was commonly called 'happiness'. The following article shows how the personal happiness of the moral agent provided a major reason for being ethical in the ancient philosophical and biblical traditions and how it continues to play a role in the more modern rights-based, Kantian and utilitarian theories. This history suggests that the personal happiness of the clinician, rightly understood, is a legitimate and important goal of clinical ethics. PMID:8433049

  12. Concepts of Chinese Folk Happiness

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ip, Po Keung

    2011-01-01

    Discourses on Chinese folk happiness are often based on anecdotal narratives or qualitative analysis. Two traditional concepts of happiness popular in Chinese culture are introduced. The paper constructs a concept of Chinese folk happiness on basis of the findings of a scientific survey on the Taiwanese people regarding their concepts of…

  13. Are Special Education Students Happy?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Uusitalo-Malmivaara, Lotta; Kankaanpaa, Paula; Makinen, Tuula; Raeluoto, Tiina; Rauttu, Karoliina; Tarhala, Veera; Lehto, Juhani E.

    2012-01-01

    This study compared the subjective and school-related happiness of 75 11- to 16-year-old special education students to 77 age- and gender-matched mainstream students using two quantitative measures. Additionally, the respondents chose from a list of 12 putative happy makers what they felt increased their happiness. Ten special education students…

  14. Autobiographical Thinking Interferes with Episodic Memory Consolidation

    PubMed Central

    Craig, Michael; Della Sala, Sergio; Dewar, Michaela

    2014-01-01

    New episodic memories are retained better if learning is followed by a few minutes of wakeful rest than by the encoding of novel external information. Novel encoding is said to interfere with the consolidation of recently acquired episodic memories. Here we report four experiments in which we examined whether autobiographical thinking, i.e. an ‘internal’ memory activity, also interferes with episodic memory consolidation. Participants were presented with three wordlists consisting of common nouns; one list was followed by wakeful rest, one by novel picture encoding and one by autobiographical retrieval/future imagination, cued by concrete sounds. Both novel encoding and autobiographical retrieval/future imagination lowered wordlist retention significantly. Follow-up experiments demonstrated that the interference by our cued autobiographical retrieval/future imagination delay condition could not be accounted for by the sound cues alone or by executive retrieval processes. Moreover, our results demonstrated evidence of a temporal gradient of interference across experiments. Thus, we propose that rich autobiographical retrieval/future imagination hampers the consolidation of recently acquired episodic memories and that such interference is particularly likely in the presence of external concrete cues. PMID:24736665

  15. [Overgeneral autobiographical memory in depressive disorders].

    PubMed

    Dutra, Tarcísio Gomes; Kurtinaitis, Laila da Camara Lima; Cantilino, Amaury; Vasconcelos, Maria Carolina Souto de; Hazin, Izabel; Sougey, Everton Botelho

    2012-01-01

    This article aims to review studies focusing on the relationship between overgeneral autobiographical memory and depressive disorders. Such characteristic has attracted attention because of its relationship with a poor ability to solve problems and to imagine the future, as well as with the maintenance and a poor prognosis of depression. Data were collected through a systematic search on LILACS, SciELO, MEDLINE, and IBECS databases, and also on the health sciences records of Portal de Periódicos da Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior (CAPES), a Brazilian journal database, focusing on articles published between 2000 and 2010. The following keywords were used: memória autobiográfica, supergeneralização da memória autobiográfica, and memória autobiográfica e depressão in Portuguese; and autobiographical memory, overgeneral autobiographical memory, and autobiographical memory and depression in English. Following application of exclusion criteria, a total of 27 studies were reviewed. Overgeneral autobiographical memory has been investigated in several depressive disorders. However, further longitudinal studies are required to confirm the relevant role of this cognitive characteristic in anamnesis and in the treatment of mood disorders. PMID:25922925

  16. Living in history: how war, terrorism, and natural disaster affect the organization of autobiographical memory.

    PubMed

    Brown, Norman R; Lee, Peter J; Krslak, Mirna; Conrad, Frederick G; G B Hansen, Tia; Havelka, Jelena; Reddon, John R

    2009-04-01

    Memories of war, terrorism, and natural disaster play a critical role in the construction of group identity and the persistence of group conflict. Here, we argue that personal memory and knowledge of the collective past become entwined only when public events have a direct, forceful, and prolonged impact on a population. Support for this position comes from a cross-national study in which participants thought aloud as they dated mundane autobiographical events. We found that Bosnians often mentioned their civil war and that Izmit Turks made frequent reference to the 1999 earthquake in their country. In contrast, public events were rarely mentioned by Serbs, Montenegrins, Ankara Turks, Canadians, Danes, or Israelis. Surprisingly, historical references were absent from (post-September 11) protocols collected in New York City and elsewhere in the United States. Taken together, these findings indicate that it is personal significance, not historical importance, that determines whether public events play a role in organizing autobiographical memory. PMID:19298262

  17. Autobiographical remembering and hypermnesia: a comparison of older and younger adults.

    PubMed

    Bluck, S; Levine, L J; Laulhere, T M

    1999-12-01

    This study examined age differences in autobiographical memory and extended findings concerning hypermnesia in laboratory tasks to a real world event, the announcement of the verdict in the O. J. Simpson murder trial. Older and younger adults repeatedly recalled the event in a single session. Interviews were coded for amount and type of accurate information and for errors. The age groups did not differ in ability to recall the gist of the event or in the number of errors made. Younger adults were better at remembering when the event had occurred. Both age groups showed hypermnesia. The results are discussed in terms of the importance of autobiographical memory across the life span and the phenomenon of hypermnesia in everyday memory. PMID:10632153

  18. Happy Me a Story

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zeece, Pauline Davey

    2006-01-01

    Current research on the foundations of emotional well-being reveals how significant adults can establish roots of happiness in children. Carter (2005) suggests that these roots can be nourished through positive thoughts and emotions; flow and fulfillment; and relating to others, especially through the use of emotional intelligence. Twenty-five…

  19. Health and happiness.

    PubMed

    Dean, Erin

    Thousands of lesbian, gay and bisexual people have entered civil partnerships since 2005. The change in the law has, arguably, opened the legal and health benefits of marriage to same-sex couples. In this article, nurses explain that being in a civil partnership has removed practical difficulties and brought increased security and happiness. PMID:22720364

  20. Self-disorders in individuals with attenuated psychotic symptoms: Contribution of a dysfunction of autobiographical memory.

    PubMed

    Berna, Fabrice; Göritz, Anja S; Schröder, Johanna; Martin, Brice; Cermolacce, Michel; Allé, Mélissa C; Danion, Jean-Marie; Cuervo-Lombard, Christine V; Moritz, Steffen

    2016-05-30

    Patients with schizophrenia and people with subclinical psychotic symptoms have difficulties getting a clear and stable representation of their self. The cognitive mechanisms involved in this reduced clarity of self-concept remain poorly understood. The present study examined whether an altered way of thinking or reasoning about one's past may account for the reduced clarity of self-concept in individuals with attenuated psychotic symptoms (APS). An online study comprising 667 participants examined the capacity to give a meaning to past events and to scrutinize autobiographical memory to better understand him/herself. Our results showed that in this sample, individuals with APS (n=49) have a lower clarity of self-concept and a higher tendency to scrutinize autobiographical memory than controls subjects (n=147). A mediation analysis performed on the full sample revealed that the relation between APS and clarity of self-concept was mediated by a tendency to scrutinize autobiographical memory. Our results suggest that the weakness of self-concept, which increases with the intensity of psychotic symptoms, may be related to an altered function of autobiographical memory, so that examining past events may fail to sustain a stable and clear representation of the self when psychotic symptoms increase. PMID:27058160

  1. True and false autobiographical memories in schizophrenia: preliminary results of a diary study.

    PubMed

    Pernot-Marino, Elodie; Schuster, Caroline; Hedelin, Guy; Berna, Fabrice; Zimmermann, Marie-Agathe; Danion, Jean-Marie

    2010-08-30

    The frequency of true and false autobiographical memories and associated states of conscious awareness, i.e., conscious recollection and simply knowing, as well as the respective roles of affective and cognitive processes in autobiographical memory construction, were assessed in eight patients with schizophrenia and eight control participants. A diary study methodology was used in combination with the Remember/Know procedure. The results showed a higher frequency of Know responses associated with the retrieval of both true and false memories in patients than in control participants. Whereas control participants rated higher at retrieval than at encoding the distinctiveness and personal importance of events, as well as the extent to which events furthered current personal plans, patients exhibited an opposite pattern of ratings, with ratings being lower at retrieval than at encoding. These preliminary results show a high frequency of simply knowing associated with the retrieval of true and false autobiographical memories in patients with schizophrenia and provide evidence for the interest of the diary study methodology for studying autobiographical memory in schizophrenia. PMID:20478623

  2. It's All in the Detail: Intentional Forgetting of Autobiographical Memories Using the Autobiographical Think/No-Think Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Noreen, Saima; MacLeod, Malcolm D.

    2013-01-01

    Using a novel autobiographical think/no-think procedure (ATNT; a modified version of the think/no-think task), 2 studies explored the extent to which we possess executive control over autobiographical memory. In Study 1, 30 never-depressed participants generated 12 positive and 12 negative autobiographical memories. Memories associated with…

  3. Quantitative Measurements of Autobiographical Memory Content

    PubMed Central

    Mainetti, Matteo; Ascoli, Giorgio A.

    2012-01-01

    Autobiographical memory (AM), subjective recollection of past experiences, is fundamental in everyday life. Nevertheless, characterization of the spontaneous occurrence of AM, as well as of the number and types of recollected details, remains limited. The CRAM (Cue-Recalled Autobiographical Memory) test (http://cramtest.info) adapts and combines the cue-word method with an assessment that collects counts of details recalled from different life periods. The SPAM (Spontaneous Probability of Autobiographical Memories) protocol samples introspection during everyday activity, recording memory duration and frequency. These measures provide detailed, naturalistic accounts of AM content and frequency, quantifying essential dimensions of recollection. AM content (∼20 details/recollection) decreased with the age of the episode, but less drastically than the probability of reporting remote compared to recent memories. AM retrieval was frequent (∼20/hour), each memory lasting ∼30 seconds. Testable hypotheses of the specific content retrieved in a fixed time from given life periods are presented. PMID:23028629

  4. Quantitative measurements of autobiographical memory content.

    PubMed

    Gardner, Robert S; Vogel, Adam T; Mainetti, Matteo; Ascoli, Giorgio A

    2012-01-01

    Autobiographical memory (AM), subjective recollection of past experiences, is fundamental in everyday life. Nevertheless, characterization of the spontaneous occurrence of AM, as well as of the number and types of recollected details, remains limited. The CRAM (Cue-Recalled Autobiographical Memory) test (http://cramtest.info) adapts and combines the cue-word method with an assessment that collects counts of details recalled from different life periods. The SPAM (Spontaneous Probability of Autobiographical Memories) protocol samples introspection during everyday activity, recording memory duration and frequency. These measures provide detailed, naturalistic accounts of AM content and frequency, quantifying essential dimensions of recollection. AM content (∼20 details/recollection) decreased with the age of the episode, but less drastically than the probability of reporting remote compared to recent memories. AM retrieval was frequent (∼20/hour), each memory lasting ∼30 seconds. Testable hypotheses of the specific content retrieved in a fixed time from given life periods are presented. PMID:23028629

  5. Autobiographical Memory in the Angry Self

    PubMed Central

    Hung, Lynette; Bryant, Richard A.

    2016-01-01

    The impact of anger on autobiographical recall was examined in two studies. In Experiment 1, 76 participants differing in trait anger completed an autobiographical memory task (AMT). In Experiment 2, 50 participants with elevated trait anger were either provoked or not provoked and subsequently completed an AMT. Across both studies, participants with high dispositional anger reported more anger-related memories, describing themselves as the primary agent of anger. In Experiment 2, provoked participants reported more memories describing themselves as the target of anger. These findings highlight the distinct patterns of memory recall associated with trait versus state anger. Findings are discussed in terms of retrieval biases operating in angry individuals and proposals stemming from self-memory system models of autobiographical memory. PMID:27023327

  6. On the validity of the autobiographical emotional memory task for emotion induction.

    PubMed

    Mills, Caitlin; D'Mello, Sidney

    2014-01-01

    The Autobiographical Emotional Memory Task (AEMT), which involves recalling and writing about intense emotional experiences, is a widely used method to experimentally induce emotions. The validity of this method depends upon the extent to which it can induce specific desired emotions (intended emotions), while not inducing any other (incidental) emotions at different levels across one (or more) conditions. A review of recent studies that used this method indicated that most studies exclusively monitor post-writing ratings of the intended emotions, without assessing the possibility that the method may have differentially induced other incidental emotions as well. We investigated the extent of this issue by collecting both pre- and post-writing ratings of incidental emotions in addition to the intended emotions. Using methods largely adapted from previous studies, participants were assigned to write about a profound experience of anger or fear (Experiment 1) or happiness or sadness (Experiment 2). In line with previous research, results indicated that intended emotions (anger and fear) were successfully induced in the respective conditions in Experiment 1. However, disgust and sadness were also induced while writing about an angry experience compared to a fearful experience. Similarly, although happiness and sadness were induced in the appropriate conditions, Experiment 2 indicated that writing about a sad experience also induced disgust, fear, and anger, compared to writing about a happy experience. Possible resolutions to avoid the limitations of the AEMT to induce specific discrete emotions are discussed. PMID:24776697

  7. When the “I” Looks at the “Me”: Autobiographical Memory, Visual Perspective, and the Self

    PubMed Central

    Sutin, Angelina R.; Robins, Richard W.

    2009-01-01

    This article presents a theoretical model of the self processes involved in autobiographical memories and proposes competing hypotheses for the role of visual perspective in autobiographical memory retrieval. Autobiographical memories can be retrieved from either the 1st person perspective, in which individuals see the event through their own eyes, or from the 3rd person perspective, in which individuals see themselves and the event from the perspective of an external observer. A growing body of research suggests that the visual perspective from which a memory is retrieved has important implications for a person's thoughts, feelings, and goals, and is integrally related to a host of self-evaluative processes. We review the relevant research literature, present our theoretical model, and outline directions for future research. PMID:18848783

  8. Latent constructs of the autobiographical memory questionnaire: a recollection-belief model of autobiographical experience.

    PubMed

    Fitzgerald, Joseph M; Broadbridge, Carissa L

    2013-01-01

    Many researchers employ single-item scales of subjective experiences such as imagery and confidence to assess autobiographical memory. We tested the hypothesis that four latent constructs, recollection, belief, impact, and rehearsal, account for the variance in commonly used scales across four different types of autobiographical memory: earliest childhood memory, cue word memory of personal experience, highly vivid memory, and most stressful memory. Participants rated each memory on scales hypothesised to be indicators of one of four latent constructs. Multi-group confirmatory factor analyses and structural analyses confirmed the similarity of the latent constructs of recollection, belief, impact, and rehearsal, as well as the similarity of the structural relationships among those constructs across memory type. The observed pattern of mean differences between the varieties of autobiographical experiences was consistent with prior research and theory in the study of autobiographical memory. PMID:23013492

  9. 'Happy Face' Crater

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-361, 15 May 2003

    Every day, the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) wide angle instruments obtain a global view of the planet to help monitor weather and seasonal patterns of frost deposition and removal. The two pictures shown here are taken from the same daily global image mosaic (the only difference is that each was processed slightly differently). The pictures show Galle Crater, informally known as 'Happy Face,' as it appeared in early southern winter. The white-ish gray surfaces are coated with wintertime carbon dioxide frost. The pattern of frost distribution gives the appearance that 'Happy Face' has opened its mouth. Galle Crater is located on the east rim of Argyre at 51oS, 31oW. Sunlight illuminates the scene from the upper left. Galle Crater is 230 km (143 mi) across.

  10. Electrophysiological Correlates of the Autobiographical Implicit Association Test (aIAT): Response Conflict and Conflict Resolution.

    PubMed

    Marini, Maddalena; Agosta, Sara; Sartori, Giuseppe

    2016-01-01

    The autobiographical IAT (aIAT) is an implicit behavioral instrument that can detect autobiographical memories encoded in an individual's mind by measuring how quickly this person can categorize and associate sentences related to a specific event with the logical dimensions true and false. Faster categorization when an event (e.g., I went to Paris) is associated with the dimension true than false indicates that that specific event is encoded as true in the individual's mind. The aim of this study is to investigate the electrophysiological correlates of the aIAT, used as a memory-detection technique (i.e., to identify which of two events is true). To this end, we recorded ERPs while participants performed an aIAT assessing which of two playing cards they had previously selected. We found an increased N200 and a decreased LPC (or P300) at the fronto-central sites when participants associated the selected playing card with the dimension false than true. Notably, both components have been previously and consistently reported in studies investigating deception. These results suggest that associating a true autobiographical event with the concept of false may involve the same cognitive processes associated with deception. PMID:27625598

  11. Electrophysiological Correlates of the Autobiographical Implicit Association Test (aIAT): Response Conflict and Conflict Resolution

    PubMed Central

    Marini, Maddalena; Agosta, Sara; Sartori, Giuseppe

    2016-01-01

    The autobiographical IAT (aIAT) is an implicit behavioral instrument that can detect autobiographical memories encoded in an individual's mind by measuring how quickly this person can categorize and associate sentences related to a specific event with the logical dimensions true and false. Faster categorization when an event (e.g., I went to Paris) is associated with the dimension true than false indicates that that specific event is encoded as true in the individual's mind. The aim of this study is to investigate the electrophysiological correlates of the aIAT, used as a memory-detection technique (i.e., to identify which of two events is true). To this end, we recorded ERPs while participants performed an aIAT assessing which of two playing cards they had previously selected. We found an increased N200 and a decreased LPC (or P300) at the fronto-central sites when participants associated the selected playing card with the dimension false than true. Notably, both components have been previously and consistently reported in studies investigating deception. These results suggest that associating a true autobiographical event with the concept of false may involve the same cognitive processes associated with deception. PMID:27625598

  12. Executive function and emotional focus in autobiographical memory specificity in older adults.

    PubMed

    Holland, Carol A; Ridout, Nathan; Walford, Edward; Geraghty, Jennifer

    2012-01-01

    The current study examined the role of executive function in retrieval of specific autobiographical memories in older adults with regard to control of emotion during retrieval. Older and younger adults retrieved memories of specific events in response to emotionally positive, negative and neutral word cues. Contributions of inhibitory and updating elements of executive function to variance in autobiographical specificity were assessed to determine processes involved in the commonly found age-related reduction in specificity. A negative relationship between age and specificity was only found in retrieval to neutral cues. Alternative explanations of this age preservation of specificity of emotional recall are explored, within the context of control of emotion in the self-memory system and preserved emotional processing and positivity effect in older adults. The pattern of relationships suggests updating, rather than inhibition, as the source of age-related reduction in specificity, but that emotional processing (particularly of positively valenced memories) is not influenced by age-related variance in executive control. The tendency of older adults to focus on positive material may thus act as a buffer against detrimental effects of reduced executive function capacity on autobiographical retrieval, representing a possible target for interventions to improve specificity of autobiographical memory retrieval in older adults. PMID:22873516

  13. Phenomenological Reliving and Visual Imagery During Autobiographical Recall in Alzheimer's Disease.

    PubMed

    El Haj, Mohamad; Kapogiannis, Dimitrios; Antoine, Pascal

    2016-03-16

    Multiple studies have shown compromise of autobiographical memory and phenomenological reliving in Alzheimer's disease (AD). We investigated various phenomenological features of autobiographical memory to determine their relative vulnerability in AD. To this aim, participants with early AD and cognitively normal older adult controls were asked to retrieve an autobiographical event and rate on a five-point scale metacognitive judgments (i.e., reliving, back in time, remembering, and realness), component processes (i.e., visual imagery, auditory imagery, language, and emotion), narrative properties (i.e., rehearsal and importance), and spatiotemporal specificity (i.e., spatial details and temporal details). AD participants showed lower general autobiographical recall than controls, and poorer reliving, travel in time, remembering, realness, visual imagery, auditory imagery, language, rehearsal, and spatial detail-a decrease that was especially pronounced for visual imagery. Yet, AD participants showed high rating for emotion and importance. Early AD seems to compromise many phenomenological features, especially visual imagery, but also seems to preserve some other features. PMID:27003216

  14. Effectiveness of a specific cueing method for improving autobiographical memory recall in patients with schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Potheegadoo, Jevita; Cordier, Adrian; Berna, Fabrice; Danion, Jean-Marie

    2014-01-01

    Autobiographical memory deficits in schizophrenia have a significant impact on patients' daily life. Our study was aimed at testing the effectiveness of a specific cueing (SC) method for improving autobiographical memory recall in patients with schizophrenia, particularly the phenomenological details of their memories. Twenty-five patients with schizophrenia and 25 comparison participants took part in the study. They recalled 6 specific autobiographical events which occurred during 3 different life periods. After each memory recall, participants were given a general cue which allowed them to add further information to their narration. The SC was then applied by means of a series of specific questions to elicit more precise memory detail. The overall memory specificity as well as the number and richness of 5 categories of memory detail (perceptual/sensory, temporal, contextual, emotional, and cognitive) were assessed before and after the SC phase. Before SC, patients' memories were less specific and less detailed. SC had a beneficial effect on patients' memory recall. The overall memory specificity of patients improved. The gain in the number and richness of memory details was comparable between patients and comparison participants. The difference between groups in terms of the number of memory details was not significant. Richness of details was still lower in patients, except for emotional and cognitive details, which were similarly rich in both groups. The cueing method reduces the autobiographical memory impairment of patients with schizophrenia and paves the way for developing specific cognitive remediation therapies to help patients in their daily life. PMID:24268933

  15. Happiness Scale Interval Study. Methodological Considerations

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kalmijn, W. M.; Arends, L. R.; Veenhoven, R.

    2011-01-01

    The Happiness Scale Interval Study deals with survey questions on happiness, using verbal response options, such as "very happy" and "pretty happy". The aim is to estimate what degrees of happiness are denoted by such terms in different questions and languages. These degrees are expressed in numerical values on a continuous [0,10] scale, which are…

  16. Emergence of Autobiographical Memory at Age 4.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nelson, Katherine

    This paper proposes an explanation for the onset of autobiographical memory at about 4 years of age. It seems likely that normal middle-class 3-year-olds have not yet mastered language as a representational system. Research suggests that children learn the social and cultural forms of narrative memory in talk with others. It is hypothesized that…

  17. Characteristics of Positive Autobiographical Memories in Adulthood

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bluck, Susan; Alea, Nicole

    2009-01-01

    The characteristics of positive autobiographical memory narratives were examined in younger and older adults. Narratives were content-coded for the extent to which they contained indicators of affect, sensory imagery, and cognition. Affect was additionally assessed through self-report. Young adults expressed more positive affect and less sensory…

  18. Directed Forgetting of Recently Recalled Autobiographical Memories

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barnier, Amanda J.; Conway, Martin A.; Mayoh, Lyndel; Speyer, Joanne; Avizmil, Orit; Harris, Celia B.

    2007-01-01

    In 6 experiments, the authors investigated list-method directed forgetting of recently recalled autobiographical memories. Reliable directed forgetting effects were observed across all experiments. In 4 experiments, the authors examined the impact of memory valence on directed forgetting. The forget instruction impaired recall of negative,…

  19. Autobiographical Memory from a Life Span Perspective

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schroots, Johannes J. F.; van Dijkum, Cor; Assink, Marian H. J.

    2004-01-01

    This comparative study (i.e., three age groups, three measures) explores the distribution of retrospective and prospective autobiographical memory data across the lifespan, in particular the bump pattern of disproportionally higher recall of memories from the ages 10 to 30, as generally observed in older age groups, in conjunction with the…

  20. Cultural Differences in Autobiographical Memory of Trauma

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jobson, Laura; O'Kearney, Richard

    2006-01-01

    This study investigated cultural differences in autobiographical memory of trauma. Australian and Asian international students provided self-defining memories, narratives of everyday and trauma memories and self-reports assessing adjustment to the trauma. No cultural distinction was found in how Australian or Asian subjects remembered a personal…

  1. Living in history and living by the cultural life script: How older Germans date their autobiographical memories.

    PubMed

    Bohn, Annette; Habermas, Tilmann

    2016-01-01

    This study examines predictions from two theories on the organisation of autobiographical memory: Cultural Life Script Theory which conceptualises the organisation of autobiographical memory by cultural schemata, and Transition Theory which proposes that people organise their memories in relation to personal events that changed the fabric of their daily lives, or in relation to negative collective public transitions, called the Living-in-History effect. Predictions from both theories were tested in forty-eight-old Germans from Berlin and Northern Germany. We tested whether the Living-in-History effect exists for both negative (the Second World War) and positive (Fall of Berlin Wall) collectively experienced events, and whether cultural life script events serve as a prominent strategy to date personal memories. Results showed a powerful, long-lasting Living-in History effect for the negative, but not the positive event. Berlin participants dated 26% of their memories in relation to the Second World War. Supporting cultural life script theory, life script events were frequently used to date personal memories. This provides evidence that people use a combination of culturally transmitted knowledge and knowledge based on personal experience to navigate through their autobiographical memories, and that experiencing war has a lasting impact on the organisation of autobiographical memories across the life span. PMID:25768233

  2. Measuring happiness in large population

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wenas, Annabelle; Sjahputri, Smita; Takwin, Bagus; Primaldhi, Alfindra; Muhamad, Roby

    2016-01-01

    The ability to know emotional states for large number of people is important, for example, to ensure the effectiveness of public policies. In this study, we propose a measure of happiness that can be used in large scale population that is based on the analysis of Indonesian language lexicons. Here, we incorporate human assessment of Indonesian words, then quantify happiness on large-scale of texts gathered from twitter conversations. We used two psychological constructs to measure happiness: valence and arousal. We found that Indonesian words have tendency towards positive emotions. We also identified several happiness patterns during days of the week, hours of the day, and selected conversation topics.

  3. Older adults report moderately more detailed autobiographical memories.

    PubMed

    Gardner, Robert S; Mainetti, Matteo; Ascoli, Giorgio A

    2015-01-01

    Autobiographical memory (AM) is an essential component of the human mind. Although the([A-z]+) amount and types of subjective detail (content) that compose AMs constitute important dimensions of recall, age-related changes in memory content are not well characterized. Previously, we introduced the Cue-Recalled Autobiographical Memory test (CRAM; see http://cramtest.info), an instrument that collects subjective reports of AM content, and applied it to college-aged subjects. CRAM elicits AMs using naturalistic word-cues. Subsequently, subjects date each cued AM to a life period and count the number of remembered details from specified categories (features), e.g., temporal detail, spatial detail, persons, objects, and emotions. The current work applies CRAM to a broad range of individuals (18-78 years old) to quantify the effects of age on AM content. Subject age showed a moderately positive effect on AM content: older compared with younger adults reported ∼16% more details (∼25 vs. ∼21 in typical AMs). This age-related increase in memory content was similarly observed for remote and recent AMs, although content declined with the age of the event among all subjects. In general, the distribution of details across features was largely consistent among younger and older adults. However, certain types of details, i.e., those related to objects and sequences of events, contributed more to the age effect on content. Altogether, this work identifies a moderate age-related feature-specific alteration in the way life events are subjectively recalled, among an otherwise stable retrieval profile. PMID:26042064

  4. Older adults report moderately more detailed autobiographical memories

    PubMed Central

    Gardner, Robert S.; Mainetti, Matteo; Ascoli, Giorgio A.

    2015-01-01

    Autobiographical memory (AM) is an essential component of the human mind. Although the([A-z]+) amount and types of subjective detail (content) that compose AMs constitute important dimensions of recall, age-related changes in memory content are not well characterized. Previously, we introduced the Cue-Recalled Autobiographical Memory test (CRAM; see http://cramtest.info), an instrument that collects subjective reports of AM content, and applied it to college-aged subjects. CRAM elicits AMs using naturalistic word-cues. Subsequently, subjects date each cued AM to a life period and count the number of remembered details from specified categories (features), e.g., temporal detail, spatial detail, persons, objects, and emotions. The current work applies CRAM to a broad range of individuals (18–78 years old) to quantify the effects of age on AM content. Subject age showed a moderately positive effect on AM content: older compared with younger adults reported ∼16% more details (∼25 vs. ∼21 in typical AMs). This age-related increase in memory content was similarly observed for remote and recent AMs, although content declined with the age of the event among all subjects. In general, the distribution of details across features was largely consistent among younger and older adults. However, certain types of details, i.e., those related to objects and sequences of events, contributed more to the age effect on content. Altogether, this work identifies a moderate age-related feature-specific alteration in the way life events are subjectively recalled, among an otherwise stable retrieval profile. PMID:26042064

  5. Threat of death and autobiographical memory: a study of passengers from Flight AT236

    PubMed Central

    McKinnon, Margaret C.; Palombo, Daniela J.; Nazarov, Anthony; Kumar, Namita; Khuu, Wayne; Levine, Brian

    2014-01-01

    We investigated autobiographical memory in a group of passengers onboard a trans-Atlantic flight that nearly ditched at sea. The consistency of traumatic exposure across passengers, some of whom developed post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), provided a unique opportunity to assess verified memory for life-threatening trauma. Using the Autobiographical Interview, which separates episodic from non-episodic details, passengers and healthy controls (HCs) recalled three events: the airline disaster (or a highly negative event for HCs), the September 11, 2001 attacks, and a non-emotional event. All passengers showed robust mnemonic enhancement for episodic details of the airline disaster. Although neither richness nor accuracy of traumatic recollection was related to PTSD, production of non-episodic details for traumatic and non-traumatic events was elevated in PTSD passengers. These findings indicate a robust mnemonic enhancement for trauma that is not specific to PTSD. Rather, PTSD is associated with altered cognitive control operations that affect autobiographical memory in general. PMID:26167422

  6. Self-Disorders in Individuals with Autistic Traits: Contribution of Reduced Autobiographical Reasoning Capacities.

    PubMed

    Berna, Fabrice; Göritz, Anja S; Schröder, Johanna; Coutelle, Romain; Danion, Jean-Marie; Cuervo-Lombard, Christine V; Moritz, Steffen

    2016-08-01

    The present web-based study (N = 840) aimed to illuminate the cognitive mechanisms underlying self-disorders in autism. Initially, participants selected three self-defining memories. Then, we assessed their capacity to give meaning to these events (i.e., meaning making), their tendency to scrutinize autobiographical memory to better understand themselves (i.e., self-continuity function of autobiographical memory) and their clarity of self-concept. The results showed that individuals with high autistic traits (ATs) had a lower clarity of self-concept than control participants. Meaning making was also reduced in AT individuals and mediated the relation between AT and self-concept clarity. Our results suggest that the reduced clarity of self-concept in AT individuals is related to an impaired capacity to make meaning of important past life events. PMID:27101235

  7. Happiness and Sustainability Together at Last! Sustainable Happiness

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    O'Brien, Catherine

    2013-01-01

    Sustainable happiness is "happiness that contributes to individual, community and/or global well-being without exploiting other people, the environment or future generations" (O'Brien, 2010a, n.p.). It underscores the interrelationship between human flourishing and ecological resilience. At the national and international levels,…

  8. The Emergence of Cultural Self-Constructs: Autobiographical Memory and Self-Description in European American and Chinese Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wang, Qi

    2004-01-01

    This study examined the emergence of cultural self-constructs as reflected in children's remembered and conceptual aspects of the self. European American and Chinese children in preschool through 2nd grade participated (N=180). Children each recounted 4 autobiographical events and described themselves in response to open-ended questions. American…

  9. Parents' Strategies to Elicit Autobiographical Memories in Autism Spectrum Disorders, Developmental Language Disorders and Typically Developing Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goldman, Sylvie; DeNigris, Danielle

    2015-01-01

    Conversations about the past support the development of autobiographical memory. Parents' strategies to elicit child's participation and recall during past event conversations were compared across three school-age diagnostic groups: autism spectrum disorder (ASD, n = 11), developmental language disorders (n = 11) and typically developing (TD,…

  10. Emotion Situation Knowledge and Autobiographical Memory in Chinese, Immigrant Chinese, and European American 3-Year-Olds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wang, Qi; Hutt, Rachel; Kulkofsky, Sarah; McDermott, Melissa; Wei, Ruohong

    2006-01-01

    This study examined the influence of children's emotion situation knowledge (EK) on their autobiographical memory ability at both group and individual levels. Native Chinese, Chinese immigrant, and European American 3-year-old children participated (N = 189). During a home visit, children recounted 2 personal memories of recent, 1-time events with…

  11. Autobiographical memory after acute stress in healthy young men.

    PubMed

    Tollenaar, Marieke S; Elzinga, Bernet M; Spinhoven, Philip; Everaerd, Walter

    2009-04-01

    Autobiographical memories have been found to be less specific after hydrocortisone administration in healthy men, resembling memory deficits in, for example, depression. This is the first study to investigate the effects of stress-induced elevated cortisol levels on autobiographic memory specificity and experience in healthy young men. Autobiographical memories were elicited by neutral and negative cue words, with instructions to recall either recent or remote memories. No effect of psychosocial stress was found on memory specificity or experience, but cortisol increases tended to be related to less specific, recent memories elicited by neutral cue words, especially when participants were physically aroused during memory retrieval. These results indicate that autobiographical memories are fairly resistant to an acute stressor in healthy young men, but that endogenous cortisol increases might be related to autobiographical memory retrieval. More research into the relation between endogenous cortisol increases and autobiographic memory retrieval is needed, especially in stress-related disorders. PMID:19156564

  12. The New Pursuit of Happiness.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berns, Walter

    1987-01-01

    Discusses the changes in American thinking and tolerance between the founding of the Massachusetts Bay Colony and the writing of the Constitution. Concludes that the right to pursue happiness allows everyone to personally define happiness. The government that secures that right will leave people alone to do as they wish. (PS)

  13. What Do Happy People Do?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Robinson, John P.; Martin, Steven

    2008-01-01

    Little attention in the quality-of-life literature has been paid to data on the daily activity patterns of happy and less happy people. Using ratings-scale information from time-diary studies, this article examines the hypothesis that people who describe themselves as happier engage in certain activities more than those who describe themselves as…

  14. On Being a Happy Academic

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Martin, Brian

    2011-01-01

    Happiness research provides guidance on what academics can do to increase their satisfaction at work. Changes in external circumstances, such as salary rises, seldom have a lasting effect. More likely to improve long-term happiness levels are exercising well-developed skills, building strong relationships, helping others and cultivating…

  15. Happiness and Childbearing across Europe

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Aassve, Arnstein; Goisis, Alice; Sironi, Maria

    2012-01-01

    Using happiness as a well-being measure and comparative data from the European social survey we focus in this paper on the link between happiness and childbearing across European countries. The analysis motivates from the recent lows in fertility in many European countries and that economic wellbeing measures are problematic when considering…

  16. Identity-related autobiographical memories and cultural life scripts in patients with Borderline Personality Disorder.

    PubMed

    Jørgensen, Carsten René; Berntsen, Dorthe; Bech, Morten; Kjølbye, Morten; Bennedsen, Birgit E; Ramsgaard, Stine B

    2012-06-01

    Disturbed identity is one of the defining characteristics of Borderline Personality Disorder manifested in a broad spectrum of dysfunctions related to the self, including disturbances in meaning-generating self-narratives. Autobiographical memories are memories of personal events that provide crucial building-blocks in our construction of a life-story, self-concept, and a meaning-generating narrative identity. The cultural life script represents culturally shared expectations as to the order and timing of life events in a prototypical life course within a given culture. It is used to organize one's autobiographical memories. Here, 17 BPD-patients, 14 OCD-patients, and 23 non-clinical controls generated three important autobiographical memories and their conceptions of the cultural life script. BPD-patients reported substantially more negative memories, fewer of their memories were of prototypical life script events, their memory narratives were less coherent and more disoriented, and the overall typicality of their life scripts was lower as compared with the other two groups. PMID:22356875

  17. Perceived happiness of college students measured by Maslow's hierarchy of needs.

    PubMed

    Pettijohn, T F; Pettijohn, T F

    1996-12-01

    Broad categories have been suggested for the events which contribute to happiness. In 1943 Maslow might have argued that people are happy when they meet or continue to meet their basic needs in his hierarchy of needs. A survey was given to 150 college students to assess which of Maslow's levels of need is perceived to be most important to happiness. Falling or staying in love was chosen significantly more often than the other choices by undergraduates of both genders. These results suggest that love is considered to be an extremely important contributor to the feeling of happiness among college students. PMID:8969081

  18. Defining, validating, and increasing indices of happiness among people with profound multiple disabilities.

    PubMed

    Green, C W; Reid, D H

    1996-01-01

    In this study we attempted to operationalize, measure, and increase happiness among people with profound disabilities. Happiness indices were defined and observed among 5 individuals. Validation measures indicated that (a) increases in happiness indices were observed when individuals were presented with most preferred stimuli relative to least preferred stimuli, (b) increases in unhappiness indices were observed when they were presented with least preferred relative to most preferred stimuli, and (c) practitioner ratings of participant happiness coincided with observed indices. Subsequently, classroom staff increased happiness indices through presentation and contingent withdrawal of activities. Results suggested that a behavioral approach can enhance happiness as one aspect of quality of life among people with profound disabilities. Research directions are offered that focus on using a behavioral approach to investigate other private events that are important among people with disabilities. PMID:8881345

  19. Happiness and Sexual Minority Status.

    PubMed

    Thomeer, Mieke Beth; Reczek, Corinne

    2016-10-01

    We used logistic regression on nationally representative data (General Social Survey, N = 10,668 and N = 6680) to examine how sexual minority status related to happiness. We considered two central dimensions of sexual minority status-sexual behavior and sexual identity. We distinguished between same-sex, both-sex, and different-sex-oriented participants. Because individuals transition between sexual behavior categories over the life course (e.g., from both-sex partners to only same-sex partners) and changes in sexual minority status have theoretical associations with well-being, we also tested the associations of transitions with happiness. Results showed that identifying as bisexual, gay, or lesbian, having both male and female partners since age 18, or transitioning to only different-sex partners was negatively related to happiness. Those with only same-sex partners since age 18 or in the past 5 years had similar levels of happiness as those with only different-sex partners since age 18. Additional tests showed that the majority of these happiness differences became non-significant when economic and social resources were included, indicating that the lower happiness was a product of structural and societal forces. Our findings clearly and robustly underscored the importance of taking a multi-faceted approach to understanding sexuality and well-being, demonstrating that not all sexual minority groups experience disadvantaged happiness. Our study calls for more attention to positive aspects of well-being such as happiness in examinations of sexual minorities and suggests that positive psychology and other happiness subfields should consider the role of sexual minority status in shaping happiness. PMID:27102605

  20. Diagnostic Categories in Autobiographical Accounts of Illness.

    PubMed

    Kelly, Michael P

    2015-01-01

    Working within frameworks drawn from the writings of Immanuel Kant, Alfred Schutz, and Kenneth Burke, this article examines the role that diagnostic categories play in autobiographical accounts of illness, with a special focus on chronic disease. Four lay diagnostic categories, each with different connections to formal medical diagnostic categories, serve as typifications to make sense of the way the lifeworld changes over the course of chronic illness. These diagnostic categories are used in conjunction with another set of typifications: lay epidemiologies, lay etiologies, lay prognostics, and lay therapeutics. Together these serve to construct and reconstruct the self at the center of the lifeworld. Embedded within the lay diagnostic categories are narratives of progression, regression, or stability, forms of typification derived from literary and storytelling genres. These narratives are developed by the self in autobiographical accounts of illness. PMID:26657684

  1. Developmental Changes in Infants' Processing of Happy and Angry Facial Expressions: A Neurobehavioral Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grossmann, Tobias; Striano, Tricia; Friederici, Angela D.

    2007-01-01

    Event-related brain potentials were measured in 7- and 12-month-old infants to examine the development of processing happy and angry facial expressions. In 7-month-olds a larger negativity to happy faces was observed at frontal, central, temporal and parietal sites (Experiment 1), whereas 12-month-olds showed a larger negativity to angry faces at…

  2. Operant conditioning of autobiographical memory retrieval.

    PubMed

    Debeer, Elise; Raes, Filip; Williams, J Mark G; Craeynest, Miet; Hermans, Dirk

    2014-01-01

    Functional avoidance is considered as one of the key mechanisms underlying overgeneral autobiographical memory (OGM). According to this view OGM is regarded as a learned cognitive avoidance strategy, based on principles of operant conditioning; i.e., individuals learn to avoid the emotionally painful consequences associated with the retrieval of specific negative memories. The aim of the present study was to test one of the basic assumptions of the functional avoidance account, namely that autobiographical memory retrieval can be brought under operant control. Here 41 students were instructed to retrieve personal memories in response to 60 emotional cue words. Depending on the condition, they were punished with an aversive sound for the retrieval of specific or nonspecific memories in an operant conditioning procedure. Analyzes showed that the course of memory specificity significantly differed between conditions. After the procedure participants punished for nonspecific memories retrieved significantly more specific memories compared to participants punished for specific memories. However, whereas memory specificity significantly increased in participants punished for specific memories, it did not significantly decrease in participants punished for nonspecific memories. Thus, while our findings indicate that autobiographical memory retrieval can be brought under operant control, they do not support a functional avoidance view on OGM. PMID:23445114

  3. Trait mindfulness and autobiographical memory specificity.

    PubMed

    Crawley, Rosalind

    2015-02-01

    Training in mindfulness skills has been shown to increase autobiographical memory specificity. The aim of this study was to examine whether there is also an association between individual differences in trait mindfulness and memory specificity using a non-clinical student sample (N = 70). Also examined were the relationships between other memory characteristics and trait mindfulness, self-reported depression and rumination. Participants wrote about 12 autobiographical memories, which were recalled in response to emotion word cues in a minimal instruction version of the Autobiographical Memory Test, rated each memory for seven characteristics, and completed the Freiburg Mindfulness Inventory, the Depression, Anxiety, and Stress Scale, and the Ruminative Responses Scale. Higher rumination scores were associated with more reliving and more intense emotion during recall. Depression scores were not associated with any memory variables. Higher trait mindfulness was associated with lower memory specificity and with more intense and more positive emotion during recall. Thus, trait mindfulness is associated with memory specificity, but the association is opposite to that found in mindfulness training studies. It is suggested that this difference may be due to an influence of trait mindfulness on memory encoding as well as retrieval processes and an influence on the mode of self-awareness that leads to a greater focus on momentary rather than narrative self-reference. PMID:25120213

  4. Cheating the lie detector: faking in the autobiographical Implicit Association Test.

    PubMed

    Verschuere, Bruno; Prati, Valentina; Houwer, Jan De

    2009-04-01

    The autobiographical Implicit Association Test (aIAT) was recently introduced in this journal as a new and promising lie-detection tool. The initial report found 91% accuracy in determining which of two autobiographical events was true. It was suggested that the aIAT, unlike other lie-detection tests, is resistant to faking. We investigated whether participants can strategically alter their performance on the aIAT. Experiment 1 showed that participants guilty of a mock theft were able to obtain an innocent test outcome. Two additional experiments showed that guilty participants can fake the aIAT without prior experience with the aIAT and when a response deadline is imposed. The aIAT is subject to the same shortcomings as other lie-detection tests. PMID:19298261

  5. Differential correlates of autobiographical memory specificity to affective and self-discrepant cues.

    PubMed

    Wessel, Ineke; Postma, Ineke R; Huntjens, Rafaële J C; Crane, Catherine; Smets, Jorien; Zeeman, Gerda G; Barnhofer, Thorsten

    2014-01-01

    According to the CaRFAX model (Williams et al., 2007), several processes may result in overgeneral autobiographical memory. The present study examined whether the type of cue used in the Autobiographical Memory Test (AMT) is important for illuminating relationships between autobiographical memory specificity and variables pertinent to the Functional Avoidance (FA) and Capture and Rumination (CaR) aspects of the model. Sixty-one women varying in their experience of a potentially traumatic event and previous depression completed two versions of the AMT: one containing affective cues and the other containing cues representing idiosyncratic self-discrepancies. Consistent with the FA hypothesis, avoidance of the potentially traumatic event was associated with fewer specific memories on the affective, but not the self-discrepant AMT. Furthermore, in line with the CaR hypothesis, performance on the self-discrepant, but not the affective AMT was related to ruminative self-reflection in women reporting previous depression, even after controlling for current depression and education levels. Together the results suggest that varying cue type may increase the sensitivity of the AMT, depending on the aspect of the CaRFAX model of overgeneral memory that is to be addressed. PMID:23889508

  6. A quasi-experimental study of a reminiscence program focused on autobiographical memory in institutionalized older adults with cognitive impairment.

    PubMed

    Lopes, Teresa Silveira; Afonso, Rosa Marina Lopes Brás Martins; Ribeiro, Óscar Manuel

    2016-01-01

    Working with past memories through reminiscence interventions has been practiced for several decades with successful outcomes on mental health in older adults. Few studies however have focused on autobiographical memory recall in older individuals with cognitive impairment. This study aims to analyze the impact of an individual reminiscence program in a group of older persons with cognitive decline living in nursing homes on the dimensions of cognition, autobiographical memory, mood, behavior and anxiety. A two-group pre-test and post-test design with single blinded assessment was conducted. Forty-one participants were randomized to an experimental group (n=20) and a control group (n=21). The first group attended five weekly individual reminiscence sessions. Changes in the outcome measures were examined for cognition (Montreal Cognitive Assessment; Autobiographical Memory Test), behavior (Alzheimer Disease Assessment Subscale Non-Cog) and emotional status (Cornell Scale for Depression in Dementia; Geriatric Depression Scale, and Geriatric Anxiety Inventory). Participants attending reminiscence sessions exhibited better outcomes compared to the control group in cognition, anxiety and depression (p<0.001), and presented a higher number of retrieved autobiographical events, specificity of evoked memories and positive valence of events (p<0.001), and also presented lower latency time for recalling events, and lower negative recalled events (p<0.01). This study supports the potential value of reminiscence therapy in improving the recall of autobiographical memory. Reminiscence therapy can be helpful to maintain or improve cognitive function, decrease anxiety and manage depressive symptoms and altered behavior, but further investigation is needed to clarify long-term effects. PMID:27347792

  7. Re-Creating Creators: Teaching Students to Edit Autobiographical Materials.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bloom, Lynn Z.

    Teaching college writing students to edit the autobiographical writing of others has many advantages. Autobiographical materials, such as diaries, letters, or journals, are physically and psychologically accessible for students, and as editors they would be obliged to keep in mind appropriateness of language, tone, and simplicity or complexity of…

  8. Autobiographical Memory Specificity among Preschool-Aged Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nuttall, Amy K.; Valentino, Kristin; Comas, Michelle; McNeill, Anne T.; Stey, Paul C.

    2014-01-01

    "Overgeneral memory" refers to difficulty retrieving specific autobiographical memories and is consistently associated with depression and/or trauma. The present study developed a downward extension of the Autobiographical Memory Test (AMT; Williams & Broadbent, 1986) given the need to document normative developmental changes in…

  9. A Developmental Psychopathology Model of Overgeneral Autobiographical Memory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Valentino, Kristin

    2011-01-01

    Overgeneral memory (OGM) is a phenomenon that refers to difficulty retrieving specific autobiographical memories. The tendency to be overgeneral in autobiographical memory recall has been commonly observed among individuals with emotional disorders compared to those without emotional disorders. Despite significant advances in identifying…

  10. Music Enhances Autobiographical Memory in Mild Alzheimer's Disease

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    El Haj, Mohamad; Postal, Virginie; Allain, Philippe

    2012-01-01

    Studies have shown that the "Four Seasons" music may enhance the autobiographical performance of Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients. We used a repeated measures design in which autobiographical recall of 12 mild AD patients was assessed using a free narrative method under three conditions: (a) in "Silence," (b) after being exposed to the opus "Four…

  11. Autobiographical Memory, Autonoetic Consciousness, and Identity in Asperger Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tanweer, Tilait; Rathbone, Clare J.; Souchay, Celine

    2010-01-01

    Previous results from research on individuals with Asperger syndrome (AS) suggest a diminished ability for recalling episodic autobiographical memory (AM). The primary aim of this study was to explore autobiographical memory in individuals with Asperger syndrome and specifically to investigate whether memories in those with AS are characterized by…

  12. Autobiographical Reasoning: Arguing and Narrating from a Biographical Perspective

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Habermas, Tilmann

    2011-01-01

    Autobiographical reasoning is the activity of creating relations between different parts of one's past, present, and future life and one's personality and development. It embeds personal memories in a culturally, temporally, causally, and thematically coherent life story. Prototypical autobiographical arguments are presented. Culture and…

  13. The consequences of suggesting false childhood food events.

    PubMed

    Bernstein, Daniel M; Scoboria, Alan; Arnold, Robert

    2015-03-01

    We combined data across eight published experiments (N=1369) to examine the formation and consequences of false autobiographical beliefs and memories. Our path models revealed that the formation of false autobiographical belief fully mediated the pathway between suggesting to people that they had experienced a positive or negative food-related event in the past and current preference for that food. Suggestion indirectly affected intention to eat the food via change in autobiographical belief. The development of belief with and without memory produced similar changes in food preferences and behavior intention, indicating that belief in the event drives changes in suggestion-related attitudes. Finally, positive suggestions (e.g., "you loved asparagus the first time you tried it") yielded stronger effects than negative suggestions (e.g., "you got sick eating egg salad"). These findings show that false autobiographical suggestions lead to the development of autobiographical beliefs, which in turn, have consequences for one's attitudes and behaviors. PMID:25613303

  14. Effects of Handedness and Saccadic Bilateral Eye Movements on Components of Autobiographical Recollection

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Parker, Andrew; Dagnall, Neil

    2010-01-01

    The effects of handedness and saccadic bilateral eye movements on autobiographical recollection were investigated. Recall of autobiographical memories was cued by the use of neutral and emotional words. Autobiographical recollection was assessed by the autobiographical memory questionnaire. Experiment 1 found that mixed-handed (vs. right handed)…

  15. Helmut Paul, a happy physicist

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Inokuti, Mitio

    Each time I meet Helmut (I address him in an American way, perhaps awfully improperly in Austria), I get a strong impression of a happy man. Why is it so? Well gifted as a physicist and also as a manager, he has had a well-deserved eminently successful career, which warrants his happiness. However, not every physicist of a comparable stature appears to be as happy as Helmut. As a tribute on the occasion of his retirement, I offer in what follows an analysis of his life, accomplishments, and happiness. The present article is also a dedication to him as the chairman of the 16th International Conference on Atomic Collisions in Solids, which was highly successful, as seen in the Proceedings appearing in the following papes.

  16. Grey and White Matter Correlates of Recent and Remote Autobiographical Memory Retrieval – Insights from the Dementias

    PubMed Central

    Irish, Muireann; Hornberger, Michael; El Wahsh, Shadi; Lam, Bonnie Y. K.; Lah, Suncica; Miller, Laurie; Hsieh, Sharpley; Hodges, John R.; Piguet, Olivier

    2014-01-01

    The capacity to remember self-referential past events relies on the integrity of a distributed neural network. Controversy exists, however, regarding the involvement of specific brain structures for the retrieval of recently experienced versus more distant events. Here, we explored how characteristic patterns of atrophy in neurodegenerative disorders differentially disrupt remote versus recent autobiographical memory. Eleven behavioural-variant frontotemporal dementia, 10 semantic dementia, 15 Alzheimer's disease patients and 14 healthy older Controls completed the Autobiographical Interview. All patient groups displayed significant remote memory impairments relative to Controls. Similarly, recent period retrieval was significantly compromised in behavioural-variant frontotemporal dementia and Alzheimer's disease, yet semantic dementia patients scored in line with Controls. Voxel-based morphometry and diffusion tensor imaging analyses, for all participants combined, were conducted to investigate grey and white matter correlates of remote and recent autobiographical memory retrieval. Neural correlates common to both recent and remote time periods were identified, including the hippocampus, medial prefrontal, and frontopolar cortices, and the forceps minor and left hippocampal portion of the cingulum bundle. Regions exclusively implicated in each time period were also identified. The integrity of the anterior temporal cortices was related to the retrieval of remote memories, whereas the posterior cingulate cortex emerged as a structure significantly associated with recent autobiographical memory retrieval. This study represents the first investigation of the grey and white matter correlates of remote and recent autobiographical memory retrieval in neurodegenerative disorders. Our findings demonstrate the importance of core brain structures, including the medial prefrontal cortex and hippocampus, irrespective of time period, and point towards the contribution of

  17. Genetic Variations in the Human Cannabinoid Receptor Gene Are Associated with Happiness

    PubMed Central

    Matsunaga, Masahiro; Isowa, Tokiko; Yamakawa, Kaori; Fukuyama, Seisuke; Shinoda, Jun; Yamada, Jitsuhiro; Ohira, Hideki

    2014-01-01

    Happiness has been viewed as a temporary emotional state (e.g., pleasure) and a relatively stable state of being happy (subjective happiness level). As previous studies demonstrated that individuals with high subjective happiness level rated their current affective states more positively when they experience positive events, these two aspects of happiness are interrelated. According to a recent neuroimaging study, the cytosine to thymine single-nucleotide polymorphism of the human cannabinoid receptor 1 gene is associated with sensitivity to positive emotional stimuli. Thus, we hypothesized that our genetic traits, such as the human cannabinoid receptor 1 genotypes, are closely related to the two aspects of happiness. In Experiment 1, 198 healthy volunteers were used to compare the subjective happiness level between cytosine allele carriers and thymine-thymine carriers of the human cannabinoid receptor 1 gene. In Experiment 2, we used positron emission tomography with 20 healthy participants to compare the brain responses to positive emotional stimuli of cytosine allele carriers to that of thymine-thymine carriers. Compared to thymine-thymine carriers, cytosine allele carriers have a higher subjective happiness level. Regression analysis indicated that the cytosine allele is significantly associated with subjective happiness level. The positive mood after watching a positive film was significantly higher for the cytosine allele carriers compared to the thymine-thymine carriers. Positive emotion-related brain region such as the medial prefrontal cortex was significantly activated when the cytosine allele carriers watched the positive film compared to the thymine-thymine carriers. Thus, the human cannabinoid receptor 1 genotypes are closely related to two aspects of happiness. Compared to thymine-thymine carriers, the cytosine allele carriers of the human cannabinoid receptor 1 gene, who are sensitive to positive emotional stimuli, exhibited greater magnitude

  18. Healthy individuals treated with clomipramine: an fMRI study of brain activity during autobiographical recall of emotions.

    PubMed

    Cerqueira, C T; Sato, J R; de Almeida, J R C; Amaro, E; Leite, C C; Gorenstein, C; Gentil, V; Busatto, G F

    2014-01-01

    Various functional magnetic resonance imaging studies addressed the effects of antidepressant drugs on brain functioning in healthy subjects; however, none specifically investigated positive mood changes to antidepressant drug. Sixteen subjects with no personal or family history of psychiatric disorders were selected from an ongoing 4-week open trial of small doses of clomipramine. Follow-up interviews documented clear positive treatment effects in six subjects, with reduced irritability and tension in social interactions, improved decision making, higher self-confidence and brighter mood. These subjects were then included in a placebo-controlled confirmatory trial and were scanned immediately after 4 weeks of clomipramine use and again 4 weeks after the last dose of clomipramine. The functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scans were run during emotion-eliciting stimuli. Repeated-measures analysis of variance of brain activity patterns showed significant interactions between group and treatment status during induced irritability (P<0.005 cluster-based) but not during happiness. Individuals displaying a positive subjective response do clomipramine had higher frontoparietal cortex activity during irritability than during happiness and neutral emotion, and higher temporo-parieto-occipital cortex activity during irritability than during happiness. We conclude that antidepressants not only induce positive mood responses but also act upon autobiographical recall of negative emotions. PMID:24984192

  19. Autobiographical memory dysfunctions in depressive disorders.

    PubMed

    Talarowska, Monika; Berk, Michael; Maes, Michael; Gałecki, Piotr

    2016-02-01

    Autobiographical memory (AM) is a ubiquitous human experience that belongs to long-term declarative memory. It plays interpersonal and intrapsychic functions. The main aim of this study is to present results of contemporary research on AM in recurrent depressive disorders. The available research literature suggests that AM dysfunctions are a precursor and risk factor for recurrent depressive disorders and that they also appear to be a consequence of depressive symptoms in a bidirectional and interacting manner. These data suggest that AM might be a viable therapeutic target for cognitive remediation strategies, given the impact of cognition on diverse clinical outcomes. PMID:26522618

  20. Effects of task instruction on autobiographical memory specificity in young and older adults.

    PubMed

    Ford, Jaclyn Hennessey; Rubin, David C; Giovanello, Kelly S

    2014-01-01

    Older adults tend to retrieve autobiographical information that is overly general (i.e., not restricted to a single event, termed the overgenerality effect) relative to young adults' specific memories. A vast majority of studies that have reported overgenerality effects explicitly instruct participants to retrieve specific memories, thereby requiring participants to maintain task goals, inhibit inappropriate responses, and control their memory search. Since these processes are impaired in healthy ageing, it is important to determine whether such task instructions influence the magnitude of the overgenerality effect in older adults. In the current study participants retrieved autobiographical memories during presentation of musical clips. Task instructions were manipulated to separate age-related differences in the specificity of underlying memory representations from age-related differences in following task instructions. Whereas young adults modulated memory specificity based on task demands, older adults did not. These findings suggest that reported rates of overgenerality in older adults' memories might include age-related differences in memory representation, as well as differences in task compliance. Such findings provide a better understanding of the underlying cognitive mechanisms involved in age-related changes in autobiographical memory and may also be valuable for future research examining effects of overgeneral memory on general well-being. PMID:23915176

  1. Effects of Task Instruction on Autobiographical Memory Specificity in Young and Older Adults

    PubMed Central

    Ford, Jaclyn Hennessey; Rubin, David C.; Giovanello, Kelly S.

    2013-01-01

    Older adults tend to retrieve autobiographical information that is overly general (i.e. not restricted to a single event, termed the overgenerality effect) relative to young adults’ specific memories. A vast majority of studies that have reported overgenerality effects explicitly instruct participants to retrieve specific memories, thereby requiring participants to maintain task goals, inhibit inappropriate responses, and control their memory search. Since these processes are impaired in healthy aging, it is important to determine whether such task instructions influence the magnitude of the overgenerality effect in older adults. In the current study, participants retrieved autobiographical memories during presentation of musical clips. Task instructions were manipulated to separate age-related differences in the specificity of underlying memory representations from age-related differences in following task instructions. Whereas young adults modulated memory specificity based on task demands, older adults did not. These findings suggest that reported rates of overgenerality in older adults’ memories may include age-related differences in memory representation, as well as differences in task compliance. Such findings provide a better understanding of the underlying cognitive mechanisms involved in age-related changes in autobiographical memory and may also be valuable for future research examining effects of overgeneral memory on general well-being. PMID:23915176

  2. Latent constructs model explaining the attachment-linked variation in autobiographical remembering.

    PubMed

    Öner, Sezin; Gülgöz, Sami

    2016-01-01

    In the current study, we proposed a latent constructs model to characterise the qualitative aspects of autobiographical remembering and investigated the structural relations in the model that may vary across individuals. Primarily, we focused on the memories of romantic relationships and argued that attachment anxiety and avoidance would be reflected in the ways that individuals encode, rehearse, or remember autobiographical memories in close relationships. Participants reported two positive and two negative relationship-specific memories and rated the characteristics for each memory. As predicted, the basic memory model yielded appropriate fit, indicating that event characteristics (EC) predicted the frequency of rehearsal (RC) and phenomenology at retrieval (PC). When attachment variables were integrated, the model showed that rehearsal mediated the link between anxiety and PC, especially for negative memories. On the other hand, for avoidance EC was the key factor mediating the link between avoidance and RC, as well as PC. Findings were discussed with respect to autobiographical memory functions emphasising a systematically, integrated framework. PMID:25716295

  3. Remembering pride and shame: self-enhancement and the phenomenology of autobiographical memory.

    PubMed

    D'Argembeau, Arnaud; Van der Linden, Martial

    2008-01-01

    People's self-images are grounded in autobiographical memories and, in particular, in the phenomenological experience associated with remembering. The desire to increase or maintain the positivity of the self-image (i.e., the self-enhancement motive) might thus play an important role in shaping memory phenomenology. This study examined this hypothesis by asking participants to recall positive and negative events that involve self-evaluations (i.e., pride and shame) and positive and negative events that involve evaluations about others (i.e., admiration and contempt); various phenomenological characteristics (e.g., sensory details, feeling of re-experiencing) were assessed using rating scales. The results show a positivity bias (i.e., subjectively remembering positive events with more details than negative events) for events that involve self-evaluations but not for events that involve evaluations of others. In addition, this bias was stronger for people high in self-esteem. It is concluded that biases affecting the phenomenology of autobiographical memory are part of the arsenal of psychological mechanisms people use to maintain a positive self-image. PMID:18569682

  4. Genes, Economics, and Happiness *

    PubMed Central

    De Neve, Jan-Emmanuel; Christakis, Nicholas A.; Fowler, James H.; Frey, Bruno S.

    2012-01-01

    We explore the influence of genetic variation on subjective well-being by employing a twin design and genetic association study. In a nationally-representative twin sample, we first show that about 33% of the variation in life satisfaction is explained by genetic variation. Although previous studies have shown that baseline happiness is significantly heritable, little research has considered molecular genetic associations with subjective well-being. We study the relationship between a functional polymorphism on the serotonin transporter gene (5-HTTLPR) and life satisfaction. We initially find that individuals with the longer, transcriptionally more efficient variant of this genotype report greater life satisfaction (n=2,545, p=0.012). However, our replication attempts on independent samples produce mixed results indicating that more work needs to be done to better understand the relationship between this genotype and subjective well-being. This work has implications for how economists think about the determinants of utility, and the extent to which exogenous shocks might affect individual well-being. PMID:24349601

  5. Genes, Economics, and Happiness.

    PubMed

    De Neve, Jan-Emmanuel; Christakis, Nicholas A; Fowler, James H; Frey, Bruno S

    2012-11-01

    We explore the influence of genetic variation on subjective well-being by employing a twin design and genetic association study. In a nationally-representative twin sample, we first show that about 33% of the variation in life satisfaction is explained by genetic variation. Although previous studies have shown that baseline happiness is significantly heritable, little research has considered molecular genetic associations with subjective well-being. We study the relationship between a functional polymorphism on the serotonin transporter gene (5-HTTLPR) and life satisfaction. We initially find that individuals with the longer, transcriptionally more efficient variant of this genotype report greater life satisfaction (n=2,545, p=0.012). However, our replication attempts on independent samples produce mixed results indicating that more work needs to be done to better understand the relationship between this genotype and subjective well-being. This work has implications for how economists think about the determinants of utility, and the extent to which exogenous shocks might affect individual well-being. PMID:24349601

  6. Mother-child reminiscing at risk: Maternal attachment, elaboration, and child autobiographical memory specificity.

    PubMed

    McDonnell, Christina G; Valentino, Kristin; Comas, Michelle; Nuttall, Amy K

    2016-03-01

    Mother-child reminiscing, the process by which mothers and their children discuss past events and emotional experiences, has been robustly linked with child outcomes, including autobiographical memory. To advance previous work linking elaborative maternal reminiscing with child autobiographical memory specificity, the ability to generate and retrieve specific memories from one's past, it is essential to make distinctions among aspects of elaboration and to consider how maternal risk factors may influence the reminiscing context. The current study evaluated (a) an interaction between emotional and structural elaboration predicting child autobiographical memory specificity and (b) the potential moderating role of maternal adult attachment. Participants consisted of 95 preschool-aged children and their mothers. The sample was predominantly low income and racially diverse. Dyads completed a reminiscing task that was coded for emotional and structural elaboration. Mothers completed the Experiences in Close Relationships questionnaire (ECR-R) to assess attachment-related avoidance and anxiety, and children completed the Autobiographical Memory Test-Preschool Version (AMT-PV) to assess memory specificity. Results indicated that the association between structural reminiscing and child memory specificity was moderated by emotional elements of reminiscing. At high levels of emotional elaboration, mothers with high levels of structural elaboration had children with more specific memory than mothers with low levels of structural elaboration. Moreover, emotional elaboration (a) predicted less specific child memory without high structural support and (b) negatively predicted child specificity at high levels of maternal attachment avoidance and anxiety, a profile associated with fearful avoidance. Future directions and implications are discussed. PMID:26630033

  7. The survey of autobiographical memory (SAM): a novel measure of trait mnemonics in everyday life.

    PubMed

    Palombo, Daniela J; Williams, Lynne J; Abdi, Hervé; Levine, Brian

    2013-06-01

    Compared to the abundance of laboratory-based memory tasks, few measures exist to assess self-reported memory function. This need is particularly important for naturalistic mnemonic capacities, such as autobiographical memory (recall of events and facts from one's past), because it is difficult to reliably assess in the laboratory. Furthermore, naturalistic mnemonic capacities may show stable individual differences that evade the constraints of laboratory testing. The Survey of Autobiographical Memory (SAM) was designed to assess such trait mnemonics, or the dimensional characterization of self-reported mnemonic characteristics. The SAM comprises items assessing self-reported episodic autobiographical, semantic, and spatial memory, as well as future prospection. In a large sample of healthy young adults, the latent dimensional structure of the SAM was characterized with multiple correspondence analysis (MCA). This analysis revealed dimensions corresponding to general mnemonic abilities (i.e., good vs poor memory across subtypes), spatial memory, and future prospection. While episodic and semantic items did not separate in this data-driven analysis, these categories did show expected dissociations in relation to depression history and to laboratory-based measures of recollection. Remote spatial memory as assessed by the SAM showed the expected advantage for males over females. Spatial memory was also related to autobiographical memory performance. Brief versions of the SAM are provided for efficient research applications. Individual differences in memory function are likely related to other health-related factors, including personality, psychopathology, dementia risk, brain structure and function, and genotype. In conjunction with laboratory or performance based assessments, the SAM can provide a useful measure of naturalistic self-report trait mnemonics for probing these relationships. PMID:23063319

  8. Happiness and arousal: framing happiness as arousing results in lower happiness ratings for older adults.

    PubMed

    Bjalkebring, Par; Västfjäll, Daniel; Johansson, Boo E A

    2015-01-01

    Older adults have been shown to describe their happiness as lower in arousal when compared to younger adults. In addition, older adults prefer low arousal positive emotions over high arousal positive emotions in their daily lives. We experimentally investigated whether or not changing a few words in the description of happiness could influence a person's rating of their happiness. We randomly assigned 193 participants, aged 22-92 years, to one of three conditions (high arousal, low arousal, or control). In line with previous findings, we found that older participants rated their happiness lower when framed as high in arousal (i.e., ecstatic, to be bursting with positive emotions) and rated their happiness higher when framed as low in arousal (i.e., satisfied, to have a life filled with positive emotions). Younger adults remained uninfluenced by the manipulation. Our study demonstrates that arousal is essential to understanding ratings of happiness, and gives support to the notion that there are age differences in the preference for arousal. PMID:26097459

  9. Culture, Interpersonal Perceptions, and Happiness in Social Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Oishi, Shigehiro; Koo, Minkyung; Akimoto, Sharon

    2008-01-01

    The authors examined cultural differences in interpersonal processes associated with happiness felt in social interactions. In a false feedback experiment (Study 1a), they found that European Americans felt happier when their interaction partner perceived their personal self accurately, whereas Asian Americans felt happier when their interaction partner perceived their collective self accurately. In Study 1b, the authors further demonstrated that the results from Study 1a were not because of cultural differences in desirability of the traits used in Study 1a. In Studies 2 and 3, they used a 2-week event sampling method and replicated Study 1. Unlike Asian Americans, African Americans were not significantly different from European Americans in the predictors of happiness in social interactions. Together, this research shows that interpersonal affirmation of important aspects of the self leads to happiness and that cultural differences are likely to emerge from the emphasis placed on different aspects of the self. PMID:18272801

  10. The Neural Architecture of Music-Evoked Autobiographical Memories

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    The medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC) is regarded as a region of the brain that supports self-referential processes, including the integration of sensory information with self-knowledge and the retrieval of autobiographical information. I used functional magnetic resonance imaging and a novel procedure for eliciting autobiographical memories with excerpts of popular music dating to one's extended childhood to test the hypothesis that music and autobiographical memories are integrated in the MPFC. Dorsal regions of the MPFC (Brodmann area 8/9) were shown to respond parametrically to the degree of autobiographical salience experienced over the course of individual 30 s excerpts. Moreover, the dorsal MPFC also responded on a second, faster timescale corresponding to the signature movements of the musical excerpts through tonal space. These results suggest that the dorsal MPFC associates music and memories when we experience emotionally salient episodic memories that are triggered by familiar songs from our personal past. MPFC acted in concert with lateral prefrontal and posterior cortices both in terms of tonality tracking and overall responsiveness to familiar and autobiographically salient songs. These findings extend the results of previous autobiographical memory research by demonstrating the spontaneous activation of an autobiographical memory network in a naturalistic task with low retrieval demands. PMID:19240137

  11. The neural architecture of music-evoked autobiographical memories.

    PubMed

    Janata, Petr

    2009-11-01

    The medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC) is regarded as a region of the brain that supports self-referential processes, including the integration of sensory information with self-knowledge and the retrieval of autobiographical information. I used functional magnetic resonance imaging and a novel procedure for eliciting autobiographical memories with excerpts of popular music dating to one's extended childhood to test the hypothesis that music and autobiographical memories are integrated in the MPFC. Dorsal regions of the MPFC (Brodmann area 8/9) were shown to respond parametrically to the degree of autobiographical salience experienced over the course of individual 30 s excerpts. Moreover, the dorsal MPFC also responded on a second, faster timescale corresponding to the signature movements of the musical excerpts through tonal space. These results suggest that the dorsal MPFC associates music and memories when we experience emotionally salient episodic memories that are triggered by familiar songs from our personal past. MPFC acted in concert with lateral prefrontal and posterior cortices both in terms of tonality tracking and overall responsiveness to familiar and autobiographically salient songs. These findings extend the results of previous autobiographical memory research by demonstrating the spontaneous activation of an autobiographical memory network in a naturalistic task with low retrieval demands. PMID:19240137

  12. Reducing unwanted trauma memories by imaginal exposure or autobiographical memory elaboration: An analogue study of memory processes

    PubMed Central

    Ehlers, Anke; Mauchnik, Jana; Handley, Rachel

    2012-01-01

    Unwanted memories of traumatic events are a core symptom of post-traumatic stress disorder. A range of interventions including imaginal exposure and elaboration of the trauma memory in its autobiographical context are effective in reducing such unwanted memories. This study explored whether priming for stimuli that occur in the context of trauma and evaluative conditioning may play a role in the therapeutic effects of these procedures. Healthy volunteers (N = 122) watched analogue traumatic and neutral picture stories. They were then randomly allocated to 20 min of either imaginal exposure, autobiographical memory elaboration, or a control condition designed to prevent further processing of the picture stories. A blurred picture identification task showed that neutral objects that preceded traumatic pictures in the stories were subsequently more readily identified than those that had preceded neutral stories, indicating enhanced priming. There was also an evaluative conditioning effect in that participants disliked neutral objects that had preceded traumatic pictures more. Autobiographical memory elaboration reduced the enhanced priming effect. Both interventions reduced the evaluative conditioning effect. Imaginal exposure and autobiographical memory elaboration both reduced the frequency of subsequent unwanted memories of the picture stories. PMID:21227404

  13. Empathy and autobiographical memory: are they linked?

    PubMed

    Tani, Franca; Peterson, Carole; Smorti, Andrea

    2014-01-01

    Autobiographical memory and empathy have been linked with social interaction variables as well as gender in independent bodies of literature. However a scarcity of research exists on the direct link between autobiographical memory and empathy. Exploring this link, in particular for memory of friendships and empathy, was the authors' main aim. A total of 107 Italian undergraduates participated. A memory fluency task was used to assess accessibility of memories spanning their entire life (preschool through university) and an empathy scale (Italian version of the Interpersonal Reactivity Index) was employed to measure the participants' level and dimensions of empathy. For men, empathy scores were related to how many memories they could recall. Specifically, men with higher scores on the fantasy and empathic concern scales and those with lower scores on the personal distress scales recalled more memories of friends. However, affective quality of their memories was unrelated to empathy. In contrast, for women there was no relationship between number of memories and empathy, but the emotional tone of their memories was related to empathy: those with higher scores on the personal distress scale had proportionately fewer affectively positive memories. Results are discussed in terms of gender differences in both empathy and parental socialization patterns. PMID:25175530

  14. Reduced Specificity of Autobiographical Memory and Depression

    PubMed Central

    Dalgleish, Tim; Williams, J. Mark G.; Golden, Ann-Marie J.; Perkins, Nicola; Barrett, Lisa Feldman; Barnard, Phillip J.; Yeung, Cecilia Au; Murphy, Victoria; Elward, Rachael; Tchanturia, Kate; Watkins, Edward

    2007-01-01

    It has been widely established that depressed mood states and clinical depression, as well as a range of other psychiatric disorders, are associated with a relative difficulty in accessing specific autobiographical information in response to emotion-related cue words on an Autobiographical Memory Test (AMT; J. M. G. Williams & K. Broadbent, 1986). In 8 studies the authors examined the extent to which this relationship is a function of impaired executive control associated with these mood states and clinical disorders. Studies 1–4 demonstrated that performance on the AMT is associated with performance on measures of executive control, independent of depressed mood. Furthermore, Study 1 showed that executive control (as measured by verbal fluency) mediated the relationship between both depressed mood and a clinical diagnosis of eating disorder and AMT performance. Using a stratified sample in Study 5, the authors confirmed the positive association between depressed mood and impaired performance on the AMT. Studies 6–8 involved experimental manipulations of the parameters of the AMT designed to further indicate that reduced executive control is to a significant extent driving the relationship between depressed mood and AMT performance. The potential role of executive control in accounting for other aspects of the AMT literature is discussed. PMID:17324083

  15. Factors that influence the generation of autobiographical memory conjunction errors.

    PubMed

    Devitt, Aleea L; Monk-Fromont, Edwin; Schacter, Daniel L; Addis, Donna Rose

    2016-01-01

    The constructive nature of memory is generally adaptive, allowing us to efficiently store, process and learn from life events, and simulate future scenarios to prepare ourselves for what may come. However, the cost of a flexibly constructive memory system is the occasional conjunction error, whereby the components of an event are authentic, but the combination of those components is false. Using a novel recombination paradigm, it was demonstrated that details from one autobiographical memory (AM) may be incorrectly incorporated into another, forming AM conjunction errors that elude typical reality monitoring checks. The factors that contribute to the creation of these conjunction errors were examined across two experiments. Conjunction errors were more likely to occur when the corresponding details were partially rather than fully recombined, likely due to increased plausibility and ease of simulation of partially recombined scenarios. Brief periods of imagination increased conjunction error rates, in line with the imagination inflation effect. Subjective ratings suggest that this inflation is due to similarity of phenomenological experience between conjunction and authentic memories, consistent with a source monitoring perspective. Moreover, objective scoring of memory content indicates that increased perceptual detail may be particularly important for the formation of AM conjunction errors. PMID:25611492

  16. Between Pleasure and Contentment: Evolutionary Dynamics of Some Possible Parameters of Happiness.

    PubMed

    Gao, Yue; Edelman, Shimon

    2016-01-01

    We offer and test a simple operationalization of hedonic and eudaimonic well-being ("happiness") as mediating variables that link outcomes to motivation. In six evolutionary agent-based simulation experiments, we compared the relative performance of agents endowed with different combinations of happiness-related traits (parameter values), under four types of environmental conditions. We found (i) that the effects of attaching more weight to longer-term than to momentary happiness and of extending the memory for past happiness are both stronger in an environment where food is scarce; (ii) that in such an environment "relative consumption," in which the agent's well-being is negatively affected by that of its neighbors, is more detrimental to survival when food is scarce; and (iii) that having a positive outlook, under which agents' longer-term happiness is increased by positive events more than it is decreased by negative ones, is generally advantageous. PMID:27144982

  17. The pursuit of happiness can be lonely.

    PubMed

    Mauss, Iris B; Savino, Nicole S; Anderson, Craig L; Weisbuch, Max; Tamir, Maya; Laudenslager, Mark L

    2012-10-01

    Few things seem more natural and functional than wanting to be happy. We suggest that, counter to this intuition, valuing happiness may have some surprising negative consequences. Specifically, because striving for personal gains can damage connections with others and because happiness is usually defined in terms of personal positive feelings (a personal gain) in western contexts, striving for happiness might damage people's connections with others and make them lonely. In 2 studies, we provide support for this hypothesis. Study 1 suggests that the more people value happiness, the lonelier they feel on a daily basis (assessed over 2 weeks with diaries). Study 2 provides an experimental manipulation of valuing happiness and demonstrates that inducing people to value happiness leads to relatively greater loneliness, as measured by self-reports and a hormonal index (progesterone). In each study, key potential confounds, such as positive and negative affect, were ruled out. These findings suggest that wanting to be happy can make people lonely. PMID:21910542

  18. Economic Migration and Happiness: Comparing Immigrants' and Natives' Happiness Gains from Income

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bartram, David

    2011-01-01

    Research on happiness casts doubt on the notion that increases in income generally bring greater happiness. This finding can be taken to imply that economic migration might fail to result in increased happiness for the migrants: migration as a means of increasing one's income might be no more effective in raising happiness than other means of…

  19. Self-images and related autobiographical memories in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Bennouna-Greene, Mehdi; Berna, Fabrice; Conway, Martin A; Rathbone, Clare J; Vidailhet, Pierre; Danion, Jean-Marie

    2012-03-01

    Schizophrenia is a severe mental illness, which affects sense of identity. While the ability to have a coherent vision of the self (i.e., self-images) relies partly on its reciprocal relationships with autobiographical memories, little is known about how memories ground "self-images" in schizophrenia. Twenty-five patients with schizophrenia and 25 controls were asked to give six autobiographical memories related to four self-statements they considered essential for defining their identity. Results showed that patients' self-images were more passive than those of controls. Autobiographical memories underlying self-images were less thematically linked to these self-images in patients. We also found evidence of a weakened sense of self and a deficient organization of autobiographical memories grounding the self in schizophrenia. These abnormalities may account for the poor cohesiveness of the self in schizophrenia. PMID:22040535

  20. Self and social functions: individual autobiographical memory and collective narrative.

    PubMed

    Nelson, Katherine

    2003-03-01

    The personal functions of autobiographical memory build on the basic biological functions of memory common to most mammals that, however, do not have the kind of episodic memories that compose human autobiographical memory according to present theory. The thesis here is that personal autobiographical memory is functionally and structurally related to the use of cultural myths and social narratives, and that the relative emphasis put on the self in different cultural and social contexts influences the form and function of autobiographical memory and the need for developing a uniquely personal life narrative in those contexts. Historical and cross-cultural trends revealed in psychological and literary research are invoked to support this thesis. PMID:12820826

  1. Personalized and not general suggestion produces false autobiographical memories and suggestion-consistent behavior.

    PubMed

    Scoboria, Alan; Mazzoni, Giuliana; Jarry, Josée L; Bernstein, Daniel M

    2012-01-01

    Suggesting false childhood events produces false autobiographical beliefs, memories and suggestion-consistent behavior. The mechanisms by which suggestion affects behavior are not understood, and whether false beliefs and memories are necessary for suggestions to impact behavior remains unexplored. We examined the relative effects of providing a personalized suggestion (suggesting that an event occurred to the person in the past), and/or a general suggestion (suggesting that an event happened to others in the past). Participants (N=122) received a personalized suggestion, a general suggestion, both or neither, about childhood illness due to spoiled peach yogurt. The personalized suggestion resulted in false beliefs, false memories, and suggestion-consistent behavioral intentions immediately after the suggestion. One week or one month later participants completed a taste test that involved eating varieties of crackers and yogurts. The personalized suggestion led to reduced consumption of only peach yogurt, and those who reported a false memory showed the most eating suppression. This effect on behavior was equally strong after one week and one month, showing a long lived influence of the personalized suggestion. The general suggestion showed no effects. Suggestions that convey personal information about a past event produce false autobiographical memories, which in turn impact behavior. PMID:22112639

  2. Life scripts for emotionally charged autobiographical memories: A cultural explanation of the reminiscence bump.

    PubMed

    Haque, Shamsul; Hasking, Penelope A

    2010-10-01

    Two studies examined the ability of the life script account to explain the reminiscence bump for emotionally charged autobiographical memories among Malaysian participants. In Study 1 volunteers, aged 50-90 years, participated in a two-phased task. In the first phase, participants estimated the timing of 11 life events (both positive and negative) that may occur in a prototypical life course within their own culture. Two weeks later the participants retrieved the same set of events from their lives and reported how old they were when those events occurred. In the second study 92 undergraduate students produced life scripts for the same 11 events. The findings revealed reminiscence bumps in both life script and retrieval curves for the memories judged happiest, most important, most in love, and most jealous. A reminiscence bump was also noted for success, although this was later in the lifespan than other reminiscence bumps. It was suggested that the life scripts can be used as an alternative account for the reminiscence bump, for highly positive and occasionally for negative autobiographical memories. PMID:20803371

  3. Happiness Inequality: How Much Is Reasonable?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gandelman, Nestor; Porzecanski, Rafael

    2013-01-01

    We compute the Gini indexes for income, happiness and various simulated utility levels. Due to decreasing marginal utility of income, happiness inequality should be lower than income inequality. We find that happiness inequality is about half that of income inequality. To compute the utility levels we need to assume values for a key parameter that…

  4. Does Academic Work Make Australian Academics Happy?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Duncan, Roderick; Tilbrook, Kerry; Krivokapic-Skoko, Branka

    2015-01-01

    Happiness research is a rapidly-growing area in social psychology and has emphasised the link between happiness and workplace productivity and creativity for knowledge workers. Recent articles in this journal have raised concerns about the level of happiness and engagement of Australian academics with their work, however there is little research…

  5. Does Education Affect Happiness? Evidence for Spain

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cunado, Juncal; de Gracia, Fernando Perez

    2012-01-01

    In this paper we study the impact of education on happiness in Spain using individual-level data from the European Social Survey, by means of estimating Ordinal Logit Models. We find both direct and indirect effects of education on happiness. First, we find an indirect effect of education on happiness through income and labour status. That is, we…

  6. [Main interventions for rehabilitation of autobiographical memory in Alzheimer's disease from early to severe stage: a review and new perspectives].

    PubMed

    Lalanne, Jennifer; Piolino, Pascale

    2013-09-01

    Given the limitations of pharmacological treatments in Alzheimer's disease, many non-drug therapies have emerged in recent decades and are often offered in complement of pharmacological treatments. The cognitive rehabilitation interventions focused on memory are usual in Alzheimer's disease. Memory deficits are prominent from the early stages of the disease and cause detriment to patient autonomy in daily life. In particular, problems of identity and autobiographical memory, although still often overlooked in the patients' general neuropsychological profile, appear right away. Because of their more insidious negative influence, specific treatments are still underdeveloped. Rehabilitation of autobiographical memory is complex because it requires taking into account its multiple components, both semantic and episodic, but also understanding its links with personal identity. Thus, this article provides an overview of existing cognitive rehabilitation interventions of anterograde and retrograde autobiographical memory in Alzheimer's disease. We specify the contribution of new technologies to improve the consolidation of recent events memory and of a rehabilitation program of autobiographical memory - REMau -, derived from the TEMPau task, which takes into account the constructive nature of episodic memories via the personal semantic through different periods of life. The main aim is to examine what are the objectives, benefits and limitations of these interventions and to estimate how they can meet the more general problem of deficiency in personal identity. As identity is constructed on the basis of past experience, but is modulated by new experiences, our current challenge is to associate combined treatments of anterograde and retrograde memory based on the interaction between autobiographical memory and the self. PMID:24026130

  7. Brain structural, functional, and cognitive correlates of recent versus remote autobiographical memories in amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment

    PubMed Central

    Tomadesso, Clémence; Perrotin, Audrey; Mutlu, Justine; Mézenge, Florence; Landeau, Brigitte; Egret, Stéphanie; de la Sayette, Vincent; Jonin, Pierre-Yves; Eustache, Francis; Desgranges, Béatrice; Chételat, Gaël

    2015-01-01

    Deficits in autobiographical memory appear earlier for recent than for remote life periods over the course of Alzheimer's disease (AD). The present study aims to further our understanding of this graded effect by investigating the cognitive and neural substrates of recent versus remote autobiographical memories in patients with amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment (aMCI) thanks to an autobiographical fluency task. 20 aMCI patients and 25 Healthy elderly Controls (HC) underwent neuropsychological tests assessing remote (20-to-30 years old) and recent (the ten last years) autobiographical memory as well as episodic and semantic memory, executive function and global cognition. All patients also had a structural MRI and an FDG-PET scan. Correlations were assessed between each autobiographical memory score and the other tests as well as grey matter volume and metabolism. Within the aMCI, performances for the remote period correlated with personal semantic memory and episodic memory retrieval whereas performances for the recent period only correlated with episodic memory retrieval. Neuroimaging analyses revealed significant correlations between performances for the remote period and temporal pole and temporo-parietal cortex volumes and anterior cingulate gyrus metabolism, while performances for the recent period correlated with hippocampal volume and posterior cingulate, medial prefrontal and hippocampus metabolism. The brain regions related with the retrieval of events from the recent period showed greater atrophy/hypometabolism in aMCI patients compared to HC than those involved in remote memories. Recall of recent memories essentially relies on episodic memory processes and brain network while remote memories also involve other processes such as semantic memory. This is consistent with the semanticization of memories with time and may explain the better resistance of remote memory in AD. PMID:26106572

  8. Relations of maternal style and child self-concept to autobiographical memories in chinese, chinese immigrant, and European american 3-year-olds.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qi

    2006-01-01

    The relations of maternal reminiscing style and child self-concept to children's shared and independent autobiographical memories were examined in a sample of 189 three-year-olds and their mothers from Chinese families in China, first-generation Chinese immigrant families in the United States, and European American families. Mothers shared memories with their children and completed questionnaires; children recounted autobiographical events and described themselves with a researcher. Independent of culture, gender, child age, and language skills, maternal elaborations and evaluations were associated with children's shared memory reports, and maternal evaluations and child agentic self-focus were associated with children's independent memory reports. Maternal style and child self-concept further mediated cultural influences on children's memory. The findings provide insight into the social-cultural construction of autobiographical memory. PMID:17107461

  9. Autobiographical Memory Disturbances in Depression: A Novel Therapeutic Target?

    PubMed

    Köhler, Cristiano A; Carvalho, André F; Alves, Gilberto S; McIntyre, Roger S; Hyphantis, Thomas N; Cammarota, Martín

    2015-01-01

    Major depressive disorder (MDD) is characterized by a dysfunctional processing of autobiographical memories. We review the following core domains of deficit: systematic biases favoring materials of negative emotional valence; diminished access and response to positive memories; a recollection of overgeneral memories in detriment of specific autobiographical memories; and the role of ruminative processes and avoidance when dealing with autobiographical memories. Furthermore, we review evidence from functional neuroimaging studies of neural circuits activated by the recollection of autobiographical memories in both healthy and depressive individuals. Disruptions in autobiographical memories predispose and portend onset and maintenance of depression. Thus, we discuss emerging therapeutics that target memory difficulties in those with depression. We review strategies for this clinical domain, including memory specificity training, method-of-loci, memory rescripting, and real-time fMRI neurofeedback training of amygdala activity in depression. We propose that the manipulation of the reconsolidation of autobiographical memories in depression might represent a novel yet largely unexplored, domain-specific, therapeutic opportunity for depression treatment. PMID:26380121

  10. Smallest Coins of Marital Happiness.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kalyan-Masih, V.; And Others

    People tend to have such lofty conceptions of love and marital happiness that little day-to-day simple acts of kindness are seldom considered. This study investigated specific, repetitive, small daily acts that strengthen marriage, and little acts that disturb a stable relationship. Participants (N=57) were individuals who had been happily married…

  11. Marital Status, Happiness, and Anomia.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ryan, John

    1981-01-01

    Survey data indicates that neither marital status nor marital happiness is related to anomia. Suggests a moderately strong negative relationship exists between education and anomia with a weak negative relationship between overall life satisfaction and anomia. Results indicate socioeconomic status remains the primary determinant of anomia for most…

  12. A dysphoric's TALE: The relationship between the self-reported functions of autobiographical memory and symptoms of depression.

    PubMed

    Grace, Lydia; Dewhurst, Stephen A; Anderson, Rachel J

    2016-10-01

    Autobiographical memory (AM) is believed to serve self, social and directive functions; however, little is known regarding how this triad of functions operates in depression. Using the Thinking About Life Experiences questionnaire [Bluck, S., & Alea, N. (2011). Crafting the TALE: Construction of a measure to assess the functions of autobiographical remembering. Memory, 19, 470-486.; Bluck, S., Alea, N., Habermas, T., & Rubin, D. C. (2005). A TALE of three functions: The self-reported uses of autobiographical memory. Social Cognition, 23, 91-117.], two studies explored the relationship between depressive symptomology and the self-reported frequency and usefulness of AMs for self, social and directive purposes. Study 1 revealed that thinking more frequently but talking less frequently about past life events was significantly associated with higher depression scores. Recalling past events more frequently to maintain self-continuity was also significantly associated with higher depressive symptomology. However, results from Study 2 indicated that higher levels of depression were also significantly associated with less-frequent useful recollections of past life events for self-continuity purposes. Taken together, the findings suggest atypical utilisations of AM to serve self-continuity functions in depression and can be interpreted within the wider context of ruminative thought processes. PMID:26371517

  13. Concepts of happiness across time and cultures.

    PubMed

    Oishi, Shigehiro; Graham, Jesse; Kesebir, Selin; Galinha, Iolanda Costa

    2013-05-01

    We explored cultural and historical variations in concepts of happiness. First, we analyzed the definitions of happiness in dictionaries from 30 nations to understand cultural similarities and differences in happiness concepts. Second, we analyzed the definition of happiness in Webster's dictionaries from 1850 to the present day to understand historical changes in American English. Third, we coded the State of the Union addresses given by U.S. presidents from 1790 to 2010. Finally, we investigated the appearance of the phrases happy nation versus happy person in Google's Ngram Viewer from 1800 to 2008. Across cultures and time, happiness was most frequently defined as good luck and favorable external conditions. However, in American English, this definition was replaced by definitions focused on favorable internal feeling states. Our findings highlight the value of a historical perspective in the study of psychological concepts. PMID:23599280

  14. The structural neural substrate of subjective happiness

    PubMed Central

    Sato, Wataru; Kochiyama, Takanori; Uono, Shota; Kubota, Yasutaka; Sawada, Reiko; Yoshimura, Sayaka; Toichi, Motomi

    2015-01-01

    Happiness is a subjective experience that is an ultimate goal for humans. Psychological studies have shown that subjective happiness can be measured reliably and consists of emotional and cognitive components. However, the neural substrates of subjective happiness remain unclear. To investigate this issue, we used structural magnetic resonance imaging and questionnaires that assessed subjective happiness, the intensity of positive and negative emotional experiences, and purpose in life. We found a positive relationship between the subjective happiness score and gray matter volume in the right precuneus. Moreover, the same region showed an association with the combined positive and negative emotional intensity and purpose in life scores. Our findings suggest that the precuneus mediates subjective happiness by integrating the emotional and cognitive components of happiness. PMID:26586449

  15. Sex Differences in the Neural Correlates of Specific and General Autobiographical Memory.

    PubMed

    Compère, Laurie; Sperduti, Marco; Gallarda, Thierry; Anssens, Adèle; Lion, Stéphanie; Delhommeau, Marion; Martinelli, Pénélope; Devauchelle, Anne-Dominique; Oppenheim, Catherine; Piolino, Pascale

    2016-01-01

    Autobiographical memory (AM) underlies the formation and temporal continuity over time of personal identity. The few studies on sex-related differences in AM suggest that men and women adopt different cognitive or emotional strategies when retrieving AMs. However, none of the previous works has taken into account the distinction between episodic autobiographical memory (EAM), consisting in the retrieval of specific events by means of mental time travel, and semantic autobiographical memory (SAM), which stores general personal events. Thus, it remains unclear whether differences in these strategies depend on the nature of the memory content to be retrieved. In the present study we employed functional MRI to examine brain activity underlying potential sex differences in EAM and SAM retrieval focusing on the differences in strategies related to the emotional aspects of memories while controlling for basic cognitive strategies. On the behavioral level, there was no significant sex difference in memory performances or subjective feature ratings of either type of AM. Activations common to men and women during AM retrieval were observed in a typical bilateral network comprising medial and lateral temporal regions, precuneus, occipital cortex as well as prefrontal cortex. Contrast analyses revealed that there was no difference between men and women in the EAM condition. In the SAM condition, women showed an increased activity, compared to men, in the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex, inferior parietal and precentral gyrus. Overall, these findings suggest that differential neural activations reflect sex-specific strategies related to emotional aspects of AMs, particularly regarding SAM. We propose that this pattern of activation during SAM retrieval reflects the cognitive cost linked to emotion regulation strategies recruited by women compared to men. These sex-related differences have interesting implications for understanding psychiatric disorders with differential sex

  16. Sex Differences in the Neural Correlates of Specific and General Autobiographical Memory

    PubMed Central

    Compère, Laurie; Sperduti, Marco; Gallarda, Thierry; Anssens, Adèle; Lion, Stéphanie; Delhommeau, Marion; Martinelli, Pénélope; Devauchelle, Anne-Dominique; Oppenheim, Catherine; Piolino, Pascale

    2016-01-01

    Autobiographical memory (AM) underlies the formation and temporal continuity over time of personal identity. The few studies on sex-related differences in AM suggest that men and women adopt different cognitive or emotional strategies when retrieving AMs. However, none of the previous works has taken into account the distinction between episodic autobiographical memory (EAM), consisting in the retrieval of specific events by means of mental time travel, and semantic autobiographical memory (SAM), which stores general personal events. Thus, it remains unclear whether differences in these strategies depend on the nature of the memory content to be retrieved. In the present study we employed functional MRI to examine brain activity underlying potential sex differences in EAM and SAM retrieval focusing on the differences in strategies related to the emotional aspects of memories while controlling for basic cognitive strategies. On the behavioral level, there was no significant sex difference in memory performances or subjective feature ratings of either type of AM. Activations common to men and women during AM retrieval were observed in a typical bilateral network comprising medial and lateral temporal regions, precuneus, occipital cortex as well as prefrontal cortex. Contrast analyses revealed that there was no difference between men and women in the EAM condition. In the SAM condition, women showed an increased activity, compared to men, in the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex, inferior parietal and precentral gyrus. Overall, these findings suggest that differential neural activations reflect sex-specific strategies related to emotional aspects of AMs, particularly regarding SAM. We propose that this pattern of activation during SAM retrieval reflects the cognitive cost linked to emotion regulation strategies recruited by women compared to men. These sex-related differences have interesting implications for understanding psychiatric disorders with differential sex

  17. The temporal distribution of autobiographical memory: changes in reliving and vividness over the life span do not explain the reminiscence bump

    PubMed Central

    Rubin, David C.; St. Jacques, Peggy L.

    2010-01-01

    When autobiographical memories are elicited with word cues, personal events from middle childhood to early adulthood are overrepresented compared to events from other periods. It is, however, unclear whether these memories are also associated with greater recollection. In this online study, we examined whether autobiographical memories from adolescence and early adulthood are recollected more than memories from other lifetime periods. Participants rated personal events that were elicited with cue words on reliving or vividness. Consistent with previous studies, most memories came from the period in which the participants were between 6 and 20 years old. The memories from this period were not relived more or recalled more vividly than memories from other lifetime periods, suggesting that they do not involve more recollection. Recent events had higher levels of reliving and vividness than remote events, and older adults reported a stronger recollective experience than younger adults. PMID:21264610

  18. Brain–Immune Interaction Accompanying Odor-Evoked Autobiographic Memory

    PubMed Central

    Matsunaga, Masahiro; Bai, Yu; Yamakawa, Kaori; Toyama, Asako; Kashiwagi, Mitsuyoshi; Fukuda, Kazuyuki; Oshida, Akiko; Sanada, Kazue; Fukuyama, Seisuke; Shinoda, Jun; Yamada, Jitsuhiro; Sadato, Norihiro; Ohira, Hideki

    2013-01-01

    The phenomenon in which a certain smell evokes a specific memory is known as the Proust phenomenon. Odor-evoked autobiographic memories are more emotional than those elicited by other sensory stimuli. The results of our previous study indicated that odor-evoked autobiographic memory accompanied by positive emotions has remarkable effects on various psychological and physiological activities, including the secretion of cytokines, which are immune-signaling molecules that modulate systemic inflammation. In this study, we aimed to clarify the neural substrates associated with the interaction between odor-evoked autobiographic memory and peripheral circulating cytokines. We recruited healthy male and female volunteers and investigated the association between brain responses and the concentration of several cytokines in the plasma by using positron emission tomography (PET) recordings when an autographic memory was evoked in participants by asking them to smell an odor that was nostalgic to them. Participants experienced positive emotions and autobiographic memories when nostalgic odors were presented to them. The levels of peripheral proinflammatory cytokines, such as the tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and interferon-γ (IFN-γ), were significantly reduced after experiencing odor-evoked autobiographic memory. Subtraction analysis of PET images indicated that the medial orbitofrontal cortex (mOFC) and precuneus/posterior cingulate cortex (PCC) were significantly activated during experiences of odor-evoked autobiographic memory. Furthermore, a correlation analysis indicated that activities of the mOFC and precuneus/PCC were negatively correlated with IFN-γ concentration. These results indicate that the neural networks including the precuneus/PCC and mOFC might regulate the secretion of peripheral proinflammatory cytokines during the experience of odor-evoked autobiographic memories accompanied with positive emotions. PMID:23977312

  19. Autobiographical Memory Functioning among Abused, Neglected, and Nonmaltreated Children: The Overgeneral Memory Effect

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Valentino, Kristin; Toth, Sheree L.; Cicchetti, Dante

    2009-01-01

    Background: This investigation addresses whether there are differences in the form and content of autobiographical memory recall as a function of maltreatment, and examines the roles of self-system functioning and psychopathology in autobiographical memory processes. Methods: Autobiographical memory for positive and negative nontraumatic events…

  20. Topographical, autobiographical and semantic memory in a patient with bilateral mesial temporal and retrosplenial infarction.

    PubMed

    Hepner, Ilana J; Mohamed, Armin; Fulham, Michael J; Miller, Laurie A

    2007-04-01

    the past. In contrast, memory for remote public events was impaired. The current findings indicate that the mesial temporal and/or retrosplenial regions have little role to play in memory for remotely acquired spatial maps, autobiographical memories, famous faces or vocabulary terms. However, the findings for landmark naming, directional calculations between landmarks and knowledge of public events suggest that the MTL and/or retrosplenial cortices remain important for accessing these types of memories indefinitely. PMID:17566942

  1. Lexical use in emotional autobiographical narratives of persons with schizophrenia and healthy controls.

    PubMed

    Hong, Kai; Nenkova, Ani; March, Mary E; Parker, Amber P; Verma, Ragini; Kohler, Christian G

    2015-01-30

    Language dysfunction has long been described in schizophrenia and most studies have focused on characteristics of structure and form. This project focuses on the content of language based on autobiographical narratives of five basic emotions. In persons with schizophrenia and healthy controls, we employed a comprehensive automated analysis of lexical use and we identified specific words and semantically or functionally related words derived from dictionaries that occurred significantly more often in narratives of either group. Patients employed a similar number of words but differed in lower expressivity and complexity, more self-reference and more repetitions. We developed a classification method for predicting subject status and tested its accuracy in a leave-one-subject-out evaluation procedure. We identified a set of 18 features that achieved 65.7% accuracy in predicting clinical status based on single emotion narratives, and 74.4% accuracy based on all five narratives. Subject clinical status could be determined automatically more accurately based on narratives related to anger or happiness experiences and there were a larger number of lexical differences between the two groups for these emotions compared to other emotions. PMID:25480546

  2. Happiness and longevity in the United States.

    PubMed

    Lawrence, Elizabeth M; Rogers, Richard G; Wadsworth, Tim

    2015-11-01

    This is the first study to our knowledge to examine the relationship between happiness and longevity among a nationally representative sample of adults. We use the recently-released General Social Survey-National Death Index dataset and Cox proportional hazards models to reveal that overall happiness is related to longer lives among U.S. adults. Indeed, compared to very happy people, the risk of death over the follow-up period is 6% (95% CI 1.01-1.11) higher among individuals who are pretty happy and 14% (95% CI 1.06-1.22) higher among those who are not happy, net of marital status, socioeconomic status, census division, and religious attendance. This study provides support for happiness as a stand-alone indicator of well-being that should be used more widely in social science and health research. PMID:26421947

  3. Happiness and death distress: two separate factors.

    PubMed

    Abdel-Khalek, Ahmed M

    2005-12-01

    The aim of the present study was to explore the relationship between happiness and death distress (death anxiety, death depression, and death obsession) in 275 volunteer Kuwaiti undergraduates. They responded to the Oxford Happiness Inventory, the Death Anxiety Scale, the Arabic Scale of Death Anxiety, the Death Depression Scale-Revised, and the Death Obsession Scale. Gender differences were significant on all 5 scales, with women showing a lower mean score of happiness and a higher mean score for the death distress. All the correlations between happiness and the death distress scales were non-significant except one pertaining to happiness and death depression (negative) in women. Two oblique factors were extracted: death distress and happiness. Therefore, these constructs represent 2 distinct and independent factors. PMID:16265799

  4. It's all in the detail: intentional forgetting of autobiographical memories using the autobiographical think/no-think task.

    PubMed

    Noreen, Saima; Macleod, Malcolm D

    2013-03-01

    Using a novel autobiographical think/no-think procedure (ATNT; a modified version of the think/no-think task), 2 studies explored the extent to which we possess executive control over autobiographical memory. In Study 1, 30 never-depressed participants generated 12 positive and 12 negative autobiographical memories. Memories associated with cue-personal word pairings were learned to criterion. Participants were then asked to recall the memory associated with some of the cue-personal word pairs (i.e., think condition) or to avoid saying or thinking about the memory associated with others (i.e., no-think condition). In a subsequent test of recall, systematic forgetting effects emerged for no-think autobiographical memories compared to baseline that received neither no-think nor think instructions. These findings were extended and replicated in a second ATNT study (using a further 30 never-depressed participants), which showed that the forgetting of autobiographical memories in the no-think condition was unlikely to be a function of thought substitution or demand characteristics. PMID:22686849

  5. Reduced specificity of negative autobiographical memories in repressive coping.

    PubMed

    Geraerts, Elke; Dritschel, Barbara; Kreplin, Ute; Miyagawa, Liv; Waddington, Joanne

    2012-12-01

    The current study examined memory specificity of autobiographical memories in individuals with and without a repressive coping style. It seems conceivable that reduced memory specificity may be a way to reduce accessibility of negative experiences, one of the hallmark features of a repressive coping style. It was therefore hypothesized that repressors would show reduced specificity when retrieving negative memories. In order to study memory specificity, participants (N = 103) performed the autobiographical memory test. Results showed that individuals with a repressive coping style were significantly less specific in retrieving negative experiences, relative to control groups of low anxious, high anxious, and defensive high anxious individuals. This result was restricted to negative memory retrieval, as participants did not differ in memory specificity for positive experiences. These results show that repressors retrieve negative autobiographical memories in an overgeneral way, possibly in order to avoid negative affect. PMID:23200428

  6. Patterns of autobiographical memory in adults with autism spectrum disorder.

    PubMed

    Crane, Laura; Pring, Linda; Jukes, Kaylee; Goddard, Lorna

    2012-10-01

    Two studies are presented that explored the effects of experimental manipulations on the quality and accessibility of autobiographical memories in adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), relative to a typical comparison group matched for age, gender and IQ. Both studies found that the adults with ASD generated fewer specific memories than the comparison group, and took significantly longer to do so. Despite this, experimental manipulations affected two indices of autobiographical memory (specificity and retrieval latency) similarly in both groups. These results suggest that adults with ASD experience a quantitative reduction in the speed and specificity of autobiographical memory retrieval, but that when they do retrieve these memories, they do so in a way that is qualitatively similar to that of typical adults. PMID:22322581

  7. Between Pleasure and Contentment: Evolutionary Dynamics of Some Possible Parameters of Happiness

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Yue; Edelman, Shimon

    2016-01-01

    We offer and test a simple operationalization of hedonic and eudaimonic well-being (“happiness”) as mediating variables that link outcomes to motivation. In six evolutionary agent-based simulation experiments, we compared the relative performance of agents endowed with different combinations of happiness-related traits (parameter values), under four types of environmental conditions. We found (i) that the effects of attaching more weight to longer-term than to momentary happiness and of extending the memory for past happiness are both stronger in an environment where food is scarce; (ii) that in such an environment “relative consumption,” in which the agent’s well-being is negatively affected by that of its neighbors, is more detrimental to survival when food is scarce; and (iii) that having a positive outlook, under which agents’ longer-term happiness is increased by positive events more than it is decreased by negative ones, is generally advantageous. PMID:27144982

  8. Happy by What Standard? The Role of Interpersonal and Intrapersonal Comparisons in Ratings of Happiness

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Steffel, Mary; Oppenheimer, Daniel M.

    2009-01-01

    The present research suggests that many of the most commonly-used indicators of happiness are constructed in a manner that renders them susceptible to null or misleading findings. While few happiness indicators specify particular comparison standards, we demonstrate that people tend to evaluate their happiness relative to comparison standards and…

  9. The functional neuroanatomy of autobiographical memory: A meta-analysis

    PubMed Central

    Svoboda, Eva; McKinnon, Margaret C.; Levine, Brian

    2007-01-01

    Autobiographical memory (AM) entails a complex set of operations, including episodic memory, self-reflection, emotion, visual imagery, attention, executive functions, and semantic processes. The heterogeneous nature of AM poses significant challenges in capturing its behavioral and neuroanatomical correlates. Investigators have recently turned their attention to the functional neuroanatomy of AM. We used the effect-location method of meta-analysis to analyze data from 24 functional imaging studies of AM. The results indicated a core neural network of left-lateralized regions, including the medial and ventrolateral prefrontal, medial and lateral temporal and retrosplenial/posterior cingulate cortices, the temporoparietal junction and the cerebellum. Secondary and tertiary regions, less frequently reported in imaging studies of AM, are also identified. We examined the neural correlates of putative component processes in AM, including, executive functions, self-reflection, episodic remembering and visuospatial processing. We also separately analyzed the effect of select variables on the AM network across individual studies, including memory age, qualitative factors (personal significance, level of detail and vividness), semantic and emotional content, and the effect of reference conditions. We found that memory age effects on medial temporal lobe structures may be modulated by qualitative aspects of memory. Studies using rest as a control task masked process-specific components of the AM neural network. Our findings support a neural distinction between episodic and semantic memory in AM. Finally, emotional events produced a shift in lateralization of the AM network with activation observed in emotion-centered regions and deactivation (or lack of activation) observed in regions associated with cognitive processes. PMID:16806314

  10. Dysphoric students show higher use of the observer perspective in their retrieval of positive versus negative autobiographical memories

    PubMed Central

    Nelis, Sabine; Debeer, Elise; Holmes, Emily A.; Raes, Filip

    2013-01-01

    Autobiographical memories are retrieved as images from either a field perspective or an observer perspective. The observer perspective is thought to dull emotion. Positive affect is blunted in depressed mood. Consequently, are positive events recalled from an observer perspective in depressed mood? We investigated the relationship between memory vantage perspective and depressive symptoms in a student sample. Participants completed the Autobiographical Memory Test (AMT; Williams & Broadbent, 1986) and assessed the perspective accompanying each memory. The Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II; Beck, Steer, & Brown, 1996) and the Responses to Positive Affect questionnaire (RPA; Feldman, Joormann, & Johnson, 2008) were administered. The results showed a small positive association between depressive symptoms and the use of an observer perspective for positive autobiographical memories, but not for negative memories. Furthermore, comparing a subgroup with clinically significant symptom levels (dysphoric students) with non-dysphoric individuals revealed that dysphoric students used an observer perspective more for positive memories compared with negative memories. This was not the case for non-dysphoric students. The observer perspective in dysphorics was associated with a dampening cognitive style in response to positive experiences. PMID:23083015