Post-event processing and autobiographical memory in social anxiety: the influence of negative feedback and rumination

Julie Morgan, Robin Banerjee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Two experiments investigated the extent to which the content of feedback and the style of post-event processing are associated with a bias in the retrieval of autobiographical memories by individuals high in social anxiety. In each experiment high and low socially anxious individuals responded to questions about autobiographical experiences, participated in a task involving real or imagined social encounters, and then recalled autobiographical memories. In Experiment 1 (n=50) participants focused on positive or negative feedback following the social task, while in Experiment 2 (n=59) participants engaged in either a ruminative or reflective response style following the social task. Experiment 1 showed that negative feedback led to the recall of memories with a significantly greater average anxiety rating only in the high social anxiety group. Experiment 2 demonstrated that the high social anxiety group who engaged in a ruminative response style recalled memories with the highest average anxiety rating. Implications of these findings for understanding the role of post-event processing as a maintaining factor in social anxiety are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1190-1204
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Anxiety Disorders
Volume22
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2008

Bibliographical note

(c) 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved

Keywords

  • social anxiety
  • autobiographical memory
  • rumination
  • post-event processing

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