College of Psychology: Faculty Articles

Title

Silence Is Not Golden: A Case for Socially-Shared Retrieval-Induced Forgetting.

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

8-2007

Keywords

Analysis of Variance, Association Learning, Inhibition, Mental Recall, Reinforcement, Social Behavior, Task Performance and Analysis, Verbal Behavior.

Publication Title

Psychological Science

ISSN

0956-7976

Volume

18

Issue/No.

8

Abstract

The present research explored the effect of selective remembering and the resulting "silences" on memory. In particular, we examined whether unmentioned information is more likely to be forgotten by a listener if related information is recollected by the speaker than if related information is not recollected by the speaker. In a modification of the retrieval-induced forgetting paradigm, pairs of individuals studied material, but in the practice phase, only one member of each pair selectively recalled it, while the other listened. Experiment 1 employed paired associates, and Experiment 2 used stories. Experiment 3 involved not controlled practice, but free-flowing conversation. In each case, results from a final memory test established not only within-individual retrieval-induced forgetting, but also socially shared retrieval-induced forgetting. The results demonstrate that listening to a speaker remember selectively can induce forgetting of related information in the listener.

DOI

10.1111/j.1467-9280.2007.01967.x