Emotion, Memory, and Conscious Awareness In Schizophrenia

Jean-Marie Danion, Caroline Huron, Lydia Rizzo and Pierre Vidailhet

in Memory and Emotion

Published in print January 2004 | ISBN: 9780195158564
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199848126 | DOI:

Series: Series in Affective Science

Emotion, Memory, and                         Conscious Awareness In Schizophrenia

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This chapter reviews evidence that both memory disturbances and emotional disturbances characterize schizophrenia and examines how memory and emotion interact in schizophrenics, whether these patients exhibit a particular difficulty in remembering emotional events, and whether they still show the Pollyanna tendency. Because conscious awareness may represent the fundamenal impairment in schizophrenia, this chapter emphasizes not only objective accuracy of memory but also states of awareness associated with emotional memories. It argues that memory for emotional material operates “normally” in schizophrenic states when emotional aspects of experience are genuinely noted. Of course, often these experiences are not interpreted by a person with schizophrenia in a fashion that accurately reflects the event's emotionality, with a corresponding memory impairment. But in many cases the emotional characteristics of an event require little controlled attention, and, under these conditions, we should expect to see intact emotional memory, even in this population which is disrupted in so many other ways. The chapter concludes by suggesting that intact emotional processing potentially plays a role in perpetualing delusional cognitions, through constructive memory processes.

Keywords: memory disturbances; emotional disturbances; schizophrenia; memory; experience; emotionality; memory impairment; delusional cognitions; emotion; conscious awareness

Chapter.  11025 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Cognitive Psychology

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