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Rev Neurosci. 2004;15(4):241-51.

Remembering emotional experiences: the contribution of valence and arousal.

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Department of Psychology, Harvard University, Athinoula A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging, Cambridge, MA, USA.


Emotional experiences can be described by two factors: valence (how negative or positive) and arousal (how calming or exciting). Although both dimensions appear to influence memory, they may do so via distinct mechanisms. The amygdala likely plays a specific role in modulating memory for arousing experiences, whereas non-amygdalar networks may be instrumental in enhancing memory for non-arousing positive or negative events.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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