Psychology Repression of Memories

The brain was believed not to have any function which could do this. However recent studies on memory and attention have elicited that a biological basis is behind the chain of events (A biological basis, Executive control functions are believed to be involved. Repression has been believed to be a blessing in disguise for those who have been emotionally or psychologically traumatized (Brandon, 1998). Another concept says that suppression attempts can fail occasionally and lead to the opposite situation of more frequent unwanted thoughts through a rebound phenomenon. An abundance of this paradoxical effect can lead to psychological problems. Recollections (Eldridge, 2000), distractions caused by environmental reasons like the onset of winter or a heavy rains or cognitive origin by recent worries or bereavement (Chao, 1995) and intelligence can all cause suppression of memory. The processes in the brain are not fully understood yet. However, the dorsolateral prefrontal region and the hippocampus are known to be the brain areas which subserve suppression of memories (Davachi, 2003).
The first one tested whether it was the motor actions or the executive control actions which governed the act of repression by using the go/no-go method in a memory retrieval task. The second experiment was to confirm whether the attempt to prevent awareness would prevent its later retrieval in a think/no-think task. The third one, the same-probe test, and the fourth, the independent-probe test for the subject’s memory for the word pairs and the implications of suppression of memory were done.
32 college students participated in the first 3 experiments and 16 for the fourth one. They were introduced to 40 pairs of essential words and 10 other pairs. Each person was shown a computer screen of the word and its pair for 5 seconds each. Then they were to say aloud the pair when shown a word.