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Chapter 8

PSY BEH 11B Chapter Notes - Chapter 8: Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, Autobiographical Memory, Semantic Memory

Psychology and Social Behavior
Course Code
Kier Groulx

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PsyBeh 11B Week 3
Reading 5 (Gleitman Ch. 8, 327-337)
Varieties of Memory
A Hierarchy of Memory Types
Explicit memory conscious memories; can describe if chosen
o Episodic memory
o Semantic memory
Implicit memory unconsciously with us
o Procedural memory
o Priming
o Perceptual learning
Episodic and Semantic Memory
o Episodic memory memory for specific events
o Semantic Memory knowledge not tied to any time or place
Ex: Water is wet, London is capital of England
o Possible Subdivisions of Episodic Memory
Autobiographical memory memory that defines who we are
Flashbulb memories
Especially vivid memories
Concern events that were highly distinctive and unexpected as
well as emotional
o Most common are emotionally negative events triggering
fear, grief, or horror
Flashbulb memories are not immune to error
But their clarity and accuracy are most likely the result of
rehearsal and emotional remembering
Memory for Traumatic Events
Debate is whether trauma memories are governed by a separate
set of principles tied to how people might protect themselves from
the painful recollection of horrific events
Traumatic memories tend to be remembered accurately,
completely and for many years
o Post-traumatic stress disorder
o Highly disruptive
No memory of trauma
o Traumatic events accompanied by physical duress
Disrupts memory
Extreme stress associated with the event is likely to
have disrupted the biological process needed for
establishing memory
o Repression
Hidden from view by defense mechanisms
o Dissociation
Creating a sense of psychological distance
between themselves and the horror
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