The specificity of autobiographical memory and overgeneral memory: clinical and research notes

Author/s Mauro Adenzato, Simone Pellegrino, Rita B. Ardito
Publishing Year 2019 Issue 2018/43
Language Italian Pages 18 P. 56-73 File size 78 KB
DOI 10.3280/QPC2018-043004
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Autobiographical memory is the memory that refers to the Self, and is based on the episodic and semantic memory systems. Studies focusing on the specificities of how autobiographical memories are recovered constitute a particular line of research within autobiographical memory studies. Much research has confirmed the existence of a tendency to recall categorical memories (i.e. memories relating to a "class" of events) and not specific memories - a tendency defined as overgeneral memory -- as a stable condition particularly associated with depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. This paper discusses the main theories related to the phenomenon of overgeneral memory, and hypothesises the influence of attachment on the style of autobiographical recall, particularly on the specificities of autobiographical memory, that is, on the flexibility in regulating the level of specificity with which an individual lingers during an autobiographical reconstruction, and on the ability to recall specific episodes by time and place, accompanied by the subjective experience of "remembering".

Keywords: Attachment, autobiographical memory, overgeneral memory.

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Mauro Adenzato, Simone Pellegrino, Rita B. Ardito, La specificità della memoria autobiografica e il fenomeno dell’ipergeneralizzazione della memoria: note cliniche e di ricerca in "QUADERNI DI PSICOTERAPIA COGNITIVA" 43/2018, pp 56-73, DOI: 10.3280/QPC2018-043004