Several studies from this approach (Páez, Basabe, González, 1997; Pennebaker, Páez & Deschamps, 2006) show data from different regions of the world (Europe, Latin America and Japan) about social psychological processes involved in the formation, consolidation and transformation of collective memories in relation to traumatic events in large samples of population. The large samples of cases surveyed (more than 1,300 subjects were part of the study presented in Pennebaker, Páez & Deschamps, 2006) indicate that interests, worldviews and subjective experiences embedded in a specific culture and historical time shape the formation, consolidation, change and oblivion of collective memories. Moreover, the construction of collective memories is determined by closeness to the present and self-relevance. In other words, people tend to consider more relevant historical events, which to some extent can be temporally and physically connected to personal experiences. However, a large proportion of the data collected in these studies comes from self-reports and questionnaires to college students which are far from showing how collective memory works in real-world activities.
Halbwachs, M. (1992). On Collective Memory. Chicago: Chicago University Press.
Páez, D., Basabe, N. & González, J.L. (1997) Social processes and collective memory: a cross-cultrual approach to remembering political events. In J.W. Pennebaker, D. Páez & B. Rimé (eds.), Collective Memory of Political Events: Social Psychological Perspectives (pp.147-174). Hillsdale: Lawrence Erlabaum.
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Pennebaker, J.W, Páez, D. & Rimé (eds.) (1997). Collective Memory of Political Events: Social Psychological Perspectives. Hillsdale: Lawrence Erlabaum.
Pennebaker, J.W., Páez, D. & Deschamps, J.C. (2006). The social psychology of history: defining the most important events of the last 10, 100, and 1000 years. Psicología Política 32, 15-32.
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