Memory as a Function of Emotional Content: Negative vs. Positive Imagery
Research suggests that emotional content increases the likelihood of information being remembered, with negative events being remembered in greater detail than positive ones. This study examined the differences in details recalled in visual representations as a function of different emotional content of the representation. Students (N=58) viewed visual representations containing either aggressive or non-aggressive content and were tested on their memory of the representation’s detail. Results indicated no statistically significant differences in the average scores of males compared to females, but average scores for aggressive content were significantly higher (F(4.06)=4.12, p <.O5) than non-aggressive content. This research supports the view that negative information is processed more efficiently in memory than positive information.