Collective Memory from a Psychological Perspective

William Hirst, Jeremy K. Yamashiro, Alin Coman

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

138 Scopus citations


Social scientists have studied collective memory for almost a century, but psychological analyses have only recently emerged. Although no singular approach to the psychological study of collective memory exists, research has largely: (i) explored the social representations of history, including generational differences; (ii) probed for the underlying cognitive processes leading to the formation of collective memories, adopting either a top-down or bottom-up approach; and (iii) explored how people live in history and transmit personal memories of historical importance across generations. Here, we discuss these different approaches and highlight commonalities and connections between them.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)438-451
Number of pages14
JournalTrends in Cognitive Sciences
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience


  • collective memory
  • generations
  • generative social science
  • mnemonic convergence
  • networks
  • social representations


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