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Recollections of unexpected and emotional events (called "flashbulb" memories) have long been the subject of theoretical speculation. The fourth Emory Symposium on Cognition brought together everyone who has done research on memories of the Challenger explosion, in order to gain better understanding of the phenomenon of flashbulb memories: How do flashbulb memories compare with other kinds of recollections? Are they unusually accurate, or especially long-lived? Do they reflect the activity of a special mechanism, as has been suggested? The book also addresses more general issues of affect and accuracy: Do emotion and arousal strengthen memory? If so, under what conditions? By what physiological mechanisms?
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A fascinating 1993 study of 'flashbulb' memories, those formed by unexpected or emotional events. The book is based on a study of people's memories of the Challenger explosion and compares the vividness and longevity of these 'flashbulb' memories with those of normal events.Review:
"...a important book that will be used extensively by researchers concerned with memory in natural circumstances. It contains excellent reviews of the effects of emotion on memory, developmental aspects of flashbulb memories, and the neurobiology of memory and concludes with spirited discussion of methodological and theoretical issues." Martin A. Conway, Science
"...well-written...well-balanced...the subject matter is inherently interesting to a broad audience...I strongly recommend this book. Efforts at studying and conceptualizing the interaction between affect and memory are not easy to find, and the authors of this book have made a scholarly contribution to this scientifically and clinically important area." Nathan Zilberg, Imagination, Cognition and Personality
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