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No evidence for unethical amnesia for imagined actions: A failed replication and extension.

Publication ,  Journal Article
Stanley, ML; Yang, BW; De Brigard, F
Published in: Memory & cognition
July 2018

In a recent study, Kouchaki and Gino (2016) suggest that memory for unethical actions is impaired, regardless of whether such actions are real or imagined. However, as we argue in the current study, their claim that people develop "unethical amnesia" confuses two distinct and dissociable memory deficits: one affecting the phenomenology of remembering and another affecting memory accuracy. To further investigate whether unethical amnesia affects memory accuracy, we conducted three studies exploring unethical amnesia for imagined ethical violations. The first study (N = 228) attempts to directly replicate the only study from Kouchaki and Gino (2016) that includes a measure of memory accuracy. The second study (N = 232) attempts again to replicate these accuracy effects from Kouchaki and Gino (2016), while including several additional variables meant to potentially help in finding the effect. The third study (N = 228) is an attempted conceptual replication using the same paradigm as Kouchaki and Gino (2016), but with a new vignette describing a different moral violation. We did not find an unethical amnesia effect involving memory accuracy in any of our three studies. These results cast doubt upon the claim that memory accuracy is impaired for imagined unethical actions. Suggestions for further ways to study memory for moral and immoral actions are discussed.

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Published In

Memory & cognition

DOI

EISSN

1532-5946

ISSN

0090-502X

Publication Date

July 2018

Volume

46

Issue

5

Start / End Page

787 / 795

Related Subject Headings

  • Young Adult
  • Morals
  • Middle Aged
  • Mental Recall
  • Male
  • Imagination
  • Humans
  • Female
  • Experimental Psychology
  • Amnesia
 

Citation

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Stanley, M. L., Yang, B. W., & De Brigard, F. (2018). No evidence for unethical amnesia for imagined actions: A failed replication and extension. Memory & Cognition, 46(5), 787–795. https://doi.org/10.3758/s13421-018-0803-y
Stanley, Matthew L., Brenda W. Yang, and Felipe De Brigard. “No evidence for unethical amnesia for imagined actions: A failed replication and extension.Memory & Cognition 46, no. 5 (July 2018): 787–95. https://doi.org/10.3758/s13421-018-0803-y.
Stanley ML, Yang BW, De Brigard F. No evidence for unethical amnesia for imagined actions: A failed replication and extension. Memory & cognition. 2018 Jul;46(5):787–95.
Stanley, Matthew L., et al. “No evidence for unethical amnesia for imagined actions: A failed replication and extension.Memory & Cognition, vol. 46, no. 5, July 2018, pp. 787–95. Epmc, doi:10.3758/s13421-018-0803-y.
Stanley ML, Yang BW, De Brigard F. No evidence for unethical amnesia for imagined actions: A failed replication and extension. Memory & cognition. 2018 Jul;46(5):787–795.
Journal cover image

Published In

Memory & cognition

DOI

EISSN

1532-5946

ISSN

0090-502X

Publication Date

July 2018

Volume

46

Issue

5

Start / End Page

787 / 795

Related Subject Headings

  • Young Adult
  • Morals
  • Middle Aged
  • Mental Recall
  • Male
  • Imagination
  • Humans
  • Female
  • Experimental Psychology
  • Amnesia