This article is based in part upon the author's doctoral dissertation. Acknowledgment is due to the members of his dissertation committee—Robert Abelson, Robert Crowder, Patricia Linville, William McGuire, and Gary Schwartz. Robert Emmons, Dan McAdams, and Peter Salovey were also valuable sources of feedback and suggestions. This research was funded through a National Science Foundation grant to Gary Schwartz and Yale University.
Affective Responses to Autobiographical Memories and Their Relationship to Long-Term Goals
Version of Record online: 28 APR 2006
Journal of Personality
Volume 58, Issue 3, pages 535–563, September 1990
How to Cite
Singer, J. A. (1990), Affective Responses to Autobiographical Memories and Their Relationship to Long-Term Goals. Journal of Personality, 58: 535–563. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-6494.1990.tb00242.x
- Issue online: 28 APR 2006
- Version of Record online: 28 APR 2006
- Manuscript received February 3, 1989; revised October 9, 1989.
ABSTRACT It was hypothesized that affective responses to memories could be predicted from a memory's relevance to the attainment or nonattainment of an individual's long-term goals. In Study 1, 30 subjects received 15 goals, based upon Murray's (1938) needs, as cues to retrieve memories. They rated both affective responses to memories and the relevance of the memories to the attainment of the cuing goal. On average, affective responses were significantly correlated with the relevance of the memories to goal attainment. In Study 2, 62 subjects retrieved 20 memories from four different content categories and rated the relevance of each memory to the attainment of all 15 goals. Factor analysis yielded three goal factors—avoidance, self-gratification, and academic accomplishment. Depending upon the memory content (family, friends, school, or activities), memories varied in how much the affect they evoked was related to the attainment of particular goals. Goals played a differentiated role in subjects' current affect about past events.