5 years ago

Flashbulb Memories.

Phelps EA, Hirst W
We review and analyze the key theories, debates, findings, and omissions of the existing literature on flashbulb memories (FBMs), including what factors affect their formation, retention, and degree of confidence. We argue that FBMs do not require special memory mechanisms and are best characterized as involving both forgetting and mnemonic distortions, despite a high level of confidence. Factual memories for FBM-inducing events generally follow a similar pattern. Although no necessary and sufficient factors straightforwardly account for FBM retention, media attention particularly shapes memory for the events themselves. FBMs are best characterized in term of repetitions, even of mnemonic distortions, whereas event memories evidence corrections. The bearing of this literature on social identity and traumatic memories is also discussed.

Publisher URL: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26997762

DOI: PubMed:26997762

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