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We propose that the capacity for a symbolic self(a flexible and multifaceted cognitive representation of an organism's own attributes) in humans is a product of evolution. In pursuing this argument, we note that some primates possess rudimentary elements of a self (an objectified self) and that the symbolic self (a) is a trait that is widely shared among(More)
Five experiments based on Carlston and Skowronski's (1994) relearning paradigm suggest that people spontaneously derive trait knowledge about actors from behaviors but that this knowledge may reflect either explicit trait inference processes or implicit actor-trait associations. Experiments 1 and 2 found that inference-instructed and control Ss showed(More)
Three studies explore mental processes underlying spontaneous trait inferences about self-informants and the spontaneous trait transference characterizing third-party informants. Process differences are suggested in that instructions prompting a nontrait inference (truth or lie?) reduce self-informant trait-savings effects and lower self-informant trait(More)
The intensity of emotions associated with memory of pleasant events generally fades more slowly across time than the intensity of emotions associated with memory of unpleasant events, a phenomenon known as the fading affect bias (FAB). Four studies examined variables that might account for, or moderate, the bias. These included the activation level of the(More)
Spontaneous trait transference occurs when communicators are perceived as possessing the very traits they describe in others. Study 1 confirmed that communicators become associated with the trait implications of their descriptions of others and that such associations persist over time. Study 2 demonstrated that these associations influence specific trait(More)
Informants who describe others' behaviors are perceived as having more of the trait implied by the behavior they describe (the trait transference effect). Associative and attributional explanations for this phenomenon are reviewed and examined in 3 experiments. Findings were inconsistent with attributional interpretations: (a) transference effects persisted(More)
A pretest was used to identify whether the traits of honesty or intelligence were either central or peripheral to individual subjects' self-conceptions. In a subsequent impression formation task, these subjects' impressions of others were influenced by both subject trait centrality and judgment dimension. When presented with target descriptions containing(More)
In two studies people judged the order in which two real-world events occurred. Ordering performance was better for events that were recent or widely separated in time. Ordering performance was also consistently related to predicted event memorability and to the amount of processing given to an event during encoding. Ordering performance was not(More)
People may choose to rehearse their autobiographical memories in silence or to disclose their memories with other people. This paper focuses on five types of memory rehearsal: involuntary rehearsal, rehearsal to maintain an event memory, rehearsal to re-experience the emotion of an event, rehearsal to understand an event, or rehearsal for social(More)