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Cultural-Historical Psychology

Publisher: Moscow State University of Psychology and Education

ISSN (printed version): 1816-5435

ISSN (online): 2224-8935


License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published since 2005

Published quarterly

Free of fees
Open Access Journal

Affiliated ISCAR


Artist's Memory 1317


Melik-Pashaev A.A.
Doctor of Psychology, Head of the Laboratory of Psychological Problems of Artistic Development, Psychological Institute of RAO, Moscow, Russia

The article describes the phenomenon of ancestral (or historical emotional) memory; it is similar to emotional memory that is a part of one's personal experience, but it covers events that transcend the limits of individual experience. Flashes of such memory plunge a person in the historical past as if it was his/her own past that is happening "here and now". With no intention of giving any causal explanations of this phenomenon, the author shows that this kind of memory is the base of artist's historical sense and the essential condition of creative success in those cases when the subject matter of a work of art is related to events or images of the past. The author also draws concrete examples of such attitude towards the past from literature and describes how the disappearance of time distance between a person and various events of the past resulted in great scientific discoveries, for instance, in history and paleoarchaeology.

Keywords: emotional memory, history, art

Column: Psychology Of Art

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