Running head: Intentional Forgetting and Emotions
Intentional Forgetting and Emotions
Emotional memories that people want to forget are sometimes hard to leave behind; especially the painful ones or the ones recorded visually may be the toughest to forget. (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill [UNCCH], 2009).Take the example when you watch the news on TV and see pictures of violence and war, it may stick in your memory more than if you read a headline on a newspaper. (Payne, 2007) Intentional forgetting help humans update their memory with new information; we often forget events, take a wrong direction, come to a switched meeting time but events like having a bad grade on an exam or a negative comment from a friend can be hard to forget (Corrigan, 2004). Because when we try to forget we mentally isolate specific information and try to block it. During this process, we make connections between our life and the emotional event which make the intentional forgetting hard as emotion makes events very noticeable and therefore highly accessible in our memory. This result differs from previous studies of intentional forgetting and it’s relation to emotional events where they used words stimuli like “sex” or “murder” the impact of graphics or violent pictures is more powerful to change the way a person feels. The UNC study center asked 218 participants to react to pictures instead of text and concluded that the word murder, for example, didn’t made people afraid as much as the ones who saw pictures of murders which had a powerful impact on the way they feel. This research also showed that both unpleasant and pleasant emotional memories resist to intentional forgetting. The difficulty of forgetting something depends on the way that our emotions bind memories into the brain; the painful or traumatic the emotion the harder it will be to forget. However, it doesn’t mean that...
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