The peaks of life: the differential temporal locations of the reminiscence bump across disparate cueing methods

Jonathan Koppel, Dorthe Berntsen

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Abstract

The reminiscence bump has generally been assessed through either (1) the cue word method, or (2) several related methods which we refer to under the umbrella of the important memories method. Here we provide a review of the literature demonstrating that the temporal location of the bump varies systematically according to cueing method, with the mean range of the bump located from 8.7 to 22.5 years of age for word-cued memories, versus 15.1 to 27.9 for important memories. This finding has hitherto been under-acknowledged, as existing theoretical accounts of the bump generally hold its location to be stable across cueing methods. We therefore re-evaluate existing theoretical accounts of the bump in light of these varying locations, addressing each account's consistency with (1) the respective bumps found through each method taken individually, and (2) the sensitivity of the bump's location to cueing method.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)66-80
JournalJournal of Applied Research in Memory and Cognition
Volume4
Issue number1
Early online date15 Dec 2014
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • autobiographical memory
  • cultural life script
  • important memories
  • reminiscene bump
  • word-cue memories

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