chapter  8
46 Pages

Functional Memory and On-Line Attribution

The fundamental characteristic of the model is the representation that it gives of the internal state of the subject . . . a representation of the impression memory which is consistent with the distinction between impression memory and verbal memory made above. In the model it is assumed that, as each adjective is received, its meaning is extracted and combined with the current impression, thus yielding a changed impression. (1963, p. 390)

This is the prototypical on-line model. The two-memory formulation of Anderson and Hubert was the begin-

ning of a more general distinction between reproductive memory and functional memory. Reproductive memory is the traditional conception, epitomized by reliance on recall and recognition measures, that is, by reproduction of the given stimulus materials. Memory researchers have almost unquestioningly assumed that the study of reproductive memory is all-sufficient. Functional memory, in contrast, is concerned with the nature and function of memory in on-going thought and action. The main functions of memory appear in processing given information for goaloriented implications and in assemblage of operating memory. The study of these functions in social cognition required new theory and new methods, outside the reproductive tradition.