Reactivating a Reactivation Theory of Implicit Memory

Consciousness and Cognition 5 (1-2):27-72 (1996)
Implicit and explicit memory tasks are interpreted within a traditional memory theory that distinguishes associations between different classes of memory units . Associations from specific sensory features to logogens are strengthened by perceptual experiences, leading to specific perceptual priming. Associations among concepts are strengthened by use, leading to specific conceptual priming. Activating associations from concepts to logogens leads to semantic and associative priming. Item presentation also establishes a new association from it to a representation of the personal context, comprising an “episodic memory.” Such contextual associations play a major role in explicit memory tasks such as recall or recognition. A critical assumption of the theory is that presentation of a given item strengthens its sensory and contextual associations independently; this permits the theory to explain various dissociations of implicit and explicit memory measures. Furthermore, by assuming that brain-injured patients with global amnesia have a selective deficit in establishing novel associations to the context, the theory can explain their deficits in explicit memory along side their intact implicit memory
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DOI 10.1006/ccog.1996.0004
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Stephen E. Robbins (2009). The Cost of Explicit Memory. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 8 (1):33-66.

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