The role of gestures in autobiographical memory

Aydın, Çağla and Göksun, Tilbe and Ötenen, Ege and Tanış Şapcı, Selma Berfin and Şentürk, Yağmur Damla (2023) The role of gestures in autobiographical memory. PLoS One, 18 (2). ISSN 1932-6203

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Speakers employ co-speech gestures when thinking and speaking; however, gesture’s role in autobiographical episodic representations is not known. Based on the gesture-for-conceptualization framework, we propose that gestures, particularly representational ones, support episodic event representations by activating existing episodic elements and causing new ones to be formed in the autobiographical recollections. These gestures may also undertake information-chunking roles to allow for further processing during remembering, such as a sense of recollective experience. Participants (N = 41) verbally narrated three events (a past autobiographical, a future autobiographical, and a non-autobiographical event) and then rated their phenomenological characteristics. We found that, even though gesture use was not different across the three event conditions, representational gestures were positively associated with the episodic event details as well as their recollective quality within the past autobiographical event narratives. These associations were not observed in future event narrations. These findings suggest that gestures are potentially instrumental in the retrieval of details in autobiographical memories.
Item Type: Article
Divisions: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences > Academic programs > Psychology
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Depositing User: Çağla Aydın
Date Deposited: 07 May 2023 19:33
Last Modified: 07 May 2023 19:33

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