Functions of Autobiographical Memory in Single and Recurring Events: Relations to Well-being Restricted; Files Only

Waters, Theodore Everett Alexander (2013)

Permanent URL: https://etd.library.emory.edu/concern/etds/ks65hc98q?locale=en
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Abstract

A growing body of literature suggests that autobiographical memory serves three basic functions: self definition, fostering social relationships, and directing future behavior. Further, some research suggests that the functions a memory serves is influenced by the type of event recalled (Waters et al., submitted). Although some research has demonstrated that autobiographical memories do serve these three functions, to date, there has been no investigation into the potential relations between the functions of autobiographical memory and actual functioning (i.e. psychological well-being). To address this gap in the literature, I present three papers drawn from the same data collection. 103 undergraduate students provided four personally significant autobiographical narratives (two single and two recurring events), and completed a set of questionnaires measuring memory function and psychological well-being. Memory functions were also assessed through narrative coding. Major findings include: that single events served more of a self and directive function compared to recurring events, while recurring events served more of a social function (Paper 1); that individuals who used their autobiographical memories to serve high levels of the self, social, and directive functions (measured via questionnaire) reported higher levels of Purpose and Communion and Positive Relationships (Paper 2); and that the ability to construct coherent autobiographical narratives was related to psychological well-being, and that this relation was moderated by the self function, for Purpose and Communion (Paper 3). The results provided the first evidence that individuals who use their memories to serve the self, social, and directive function of autobiographical memory report higher levels of psychological well-being, and replicated previous work suggesting that event type influences the expression of the functions of autobiographical memory.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Abstract………………………………………………………………………………
4 Introduction: Functions of Autobiographical Memory in Single and Recurring Events: Relations to Well-being……………………………………………………..
5
Study 1: Autobiographical Memory Functions of Single and Recurring Events

Title Page…………………………………………………………………………….
31
Abstract………………………………………………………………………………
32
Introduction………………………………………………………………………….
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Method……………………………………………………………………………….
40
Results………………………………………………………………………………..
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Discussion……………………………………………………………………………
50
References……………………………………………………………………………
55
Table 1……………………………………………………………………………….
62
Table 2……………………………………………………………………………….
64
Table 3……………………………………………………………………………….
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Table 4……………………………………………………………………………….
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Table 5……………………………………………………………………………….
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Figure 1………………………………………………………………………………
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Figure 2………………………………………………………………………………
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Study 2: Relations Between the Functions of Autobiographical Memory and Psychological Well-being

Title Page…………………………………………………………………………….
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Abstract………………………………………………………………………………
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Introduction………………………………………………………………………….
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Method……………………………………………………………………………….
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Results………………………………………………………………………………..
85
Discussion……………………………………………………………………………
87
References……………………………………………………………………………
94
Table 1……………………………………………………………………………….
101
Table 2……………………………………………………………………………….
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Table 3……………………………………………………………………………….
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Table 4……………………………………………………………………………….
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Table 5……………………………………………………………………………….
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Study 3: Relations Between Narrative Coherence and Psychological Well-being: Moderation by Function Served

Title Page…………………………………………………………………………….
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Abstract………………………………………………………………………………
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Introduction…………………………………………………………………………..
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Method……………………………………………………………………………….
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Results………………………………………………………………………………..
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Discussion……………………………………………………………………………
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Reference…………………………………………………………………………….
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Table 1……………………………………………………………………………….
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Table 2……………………………………………………………………………….
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Table 3……………………………………………………………………………….
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Table 4……………………………………………………………………………….
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General Discussion…………………………………………………………………..
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References……………………………………………………………………………
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Figure 1………………………………………………………………………………
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