MEDLINE Journals

    Remembering can cause forgetting--but not in negative moods.


    Bäuml KH, Kuhbandner C 


    Psychol Sci 2007 Feb; 18(2) :111-5.


    Repeated retrieval of a subset of previously observed events can cause forgetting of the non-retrieved events. We examined how affective states experienced during retrieval modulate such retrieval-induced forgetting by inducing positive, negative, and neutral moods in subjects immediately before they attempted to retrieve studied items. On the basis of recent work, we hypothesized that positive moods encourage relational processing, which should increase interference from related events and thus enhance retrieval-induced forgetting. By contrast, negative moods should encourage item-specific processing, which should reduce interference and thus reduce such forgetting. Our results are consistent with these predictions. When subjects were in negative moods, repeated retrieval did not cause forgetting of the non-retrieved material, whereas when subjects were in positive and neutral moods, they showed reliable retrieval-induced forgetting. Our findings suggest that the emotions involved during interrogation of a witness can affect the result of repeated interrogations.


    Mental Recall
    Visual Perception



    Pub Type(s)

    Journal Article Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

    PubMed ID


    Content Manager
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