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Identity Formation and Autobiographical Memory: Two Interrelated Concepts of Development

Authors: Anna R. Alyusheva, Veronika V. Nourkova


The aim of the present paper is to investigate the interdependency among ego-identity status, autobiographical memory and cultural life story schema. The study shows considerable differences between autobiographical memory characteristics and “family script", which is typical for participants (adolescents, M age years = 17.84, SD = 1.18, N = 58), with different ego-identity statuses. Participants with diffused ego-identity status recalled fewer autobiographical memories. Additionally, this group of participants recalled fewer events from their parents- life. Participants with moratorium ego-identity status dated their first recollections to a later age than others, and recalled fewer memories relating to their childhood. Participants with achieved identity status recalled more self-defining memories and events from their parents- life. They used more functions from the autobiographical memory. There weren-t any significant differences between the foreclosed identity status group and the others. These findings support the idea of a bidirectional relation between culture, memory and self.

Keywords: autobiographical memory, autobiographical narrative, cultural life script, ego-identity

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