Posts Tagged ‘Emotion’

Remember That Song?

April 30th, 2013 12 comments

Do you remember that top hit from your favorite 90s boy band that you listened to on your CD player in 4th grade? Now can you recall that song on the radio that you listened to last week while driving to Colby College on I-95? Chances are, you will remember every last word of that pop song from a decade ago, but you cannot remember anything about that song you heard very recently while driving past endless pine trees. It may seem counter intuitive that certain songs from the distant past are ingrained in memory much better than the latest hits. However, past research has shown that memory and emotion are closely linked, and memory can be enhanced when correlated with powerful emotions (Laird et al., 1982). Music can be an effective catalyst in eliciting strong emotion, and people use music as a way to derive emotional responses. For example, people listen to upbeat and lively music when they want to socialize at parties, and movies play sad, slow music in a minor key during tragic moments. To examine whether emotion can have an effect on the ability to remember songs, Stephanie M. Stalinski and E. Gleen Schellenberg, investigated whether “liking” a song is correlated with the ability to remember it at a later point in time.

Read more…

Categories: Memory Tags: , ,

Sense-triggered memory: why smelling your ex-boyfriend’s old sweatshirt makes you want to cry

April 3rd, 2013 7 comments


Have you ever smelled a certain cologne and felt your heart drop because it was the one your ex-boyfriend wore? Or have you caught a whiff of your mom’s apple pie and affectionately remembered devouring a slice with your brother? Maybe you’ve smelled a certain brand of cigar and remembered how happy you were bouncing on your grandfather’s knee as a child. Certain sensory cues can be very powerful triggers for emotional memories. While many people think of sounds such as music as being strong memory cues, smells actually produce the most emotional and evocative memories.

Read more…

Categories: Aging, Memory Tags: ,