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Self-centred memories: the reminiscence bump and the self

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Rathbone, C. J., Moulin, C. J. A. and Conway, M. A. (2008) Self-centred memories: the reminiscence bump and the self. Memory & Cognition, 36 (8). pp. 1403-1414. ISSN 1532-5946

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To link to this article DOI: 10.3758/MC.36.8.1403

Abstract/Summary

The self-memory relationship is thought to be bidirectional, in such a way that memories provide context for the self, and equally, the self exercises control over retrieval (Conway, 2005). Autobiographical memories are not distributed equally across the life span; instead, memories peak between ages 10 and 30. This reminiscence bump has been suggested to support the emergence of a stable and enduring self. In the present study, the relationship between memory accessibility and self was explored with a novel methodology that used generation of self images in the form of I am statements. Memories generated from I am cues clustered around the time of emergence for that particular self image. We argue that, when a new self-image is formed, it is associated with the encoding of memories that are relevant to that self and that remain highly accessible to the rememberer later in life. This study offers a new methodology for academics and clinicians interested in the relationship between memory and identity.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences > Department of Psychology
Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences > Social
Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences > Language and Cognition
ID Code:21627
Publisher:Springer
Publisher Statement:The final publication is available at www.springerlink.com

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