Anger and memory for biographical information: Explicit and implicit tasks with implications for a network theory of affect
Two experiments examined anger and memory. In the first experiment, 80 undergraduate females read biographical sketches of a confederate and a comparison subject while in a neutral mood. They were then assigned to work with the confederate in a control group in which the neutral mood was maintained or in an anger group in which an anger provocation (a mild insult) occurred. Subjects in both groups were subsequently asked to remember what they had previously read in the biographical sketches. Angered subjects reported more negative information about the insulting confederate, but the effect appeared mainly due to intrusions and other errors. When intrusions and other errors were removed from the data, angered subjects were no more negative in their recall of information about the confederate than control subjects. In the second experiment, 52 undergraduate females read a list of adjectives describing a confederate and comparison subject and were then assigned to a control group or an anger group. Relative to the control group, angered subjects demonstrated increased implicit recall of negative information about the confederate. Free recall of negative information was uncorrelated with the implicit measure. Similar to Experiment One, there were no significant between group differences in free recall of negative information. However, subjects in the angered group demonstrated an unexpected decrease in free recall of positive information about the confederate. Results are discussed in relation to a theory of cognitive specificity as well as Bower's (1981) network theory of affect and memory.
Burns, Melanie Overton, "Anger and memory for biographical information: Explicit and implicit tasks with implications for a network theory of affect" (1994). Dissertations available from ProQuest. AAI9521007.