Brain mechanisms of associative memory of verbal material in communicative context - the role of emotional congruency and basic emotions (NCN Preludium 2015/19/N/HS6/02376)

Project Leader:Project leader: dr Monika Riegel

LOBI/ LABNIC (University of Geneva)



Emotions are a crucial element of interpersonal communication. Also, they influence various cognitive processes such as memory and attention (Holland & Kensinger, 2013). Some studies have confirmed a common belief that an information evoking our strong emotions are better remembered (Mather & Sutherland, 2011). However, there are contradictory conclusions regarding the influence of emotion on the memory of context. (Chiu, Dolcos, Gonsalves, & Cohen, 2013) being extremely important in the studies on the memory of verbal material (Riegel, Wierzba, Grabowska, Jednorog, & Marchewka, 2015).

The aim of the project is an investigating mechanism of the influence of emotion on associative memory of words within communicative context. Assuming that theoretical model of affective dimensions (Osgood, Suci, & Tannenbaum) can be insufficient to fully describe experiencing emotion, we follow the model of basic emotions (Ekman, 1992) in order to compare specific effects related to memory of disgust and fear. Moreover, we would like to consider the influence of an aspect that has not been examined so far, namely emotional congruence of certain information and its context. For instance, a word “decayed” can be accompanied by a face expressing disgust, whereas a word “mould” can be accompanied by a face expressing fear. Also neutral words and faces will occur.