Find Paper, Faster
Example:10.1021/acsami.1c06204 or Chem. Rev., 2007, 107, 2411-2502
Divergent Thinking in Survival Processing: Did Our Ancestors Benefit From Creative Thinking?
Evolutionary Psychology  (IF1.506),  Pub Date : 2021-02-25, DOI: 10.1177/1474704921994028
Jeanette Altarriba, Mary C. Avery

The survival processing advantage is a robust mnemonic device in which information processed for its relevance to one’s survival is subsequently better remembered. Research indicates that elaborative processing may be a key component underlying this memory effect, and that this mechanism resembles divergent thinking, whereby words with a greater number of creative uses in a given scenario are better remembered. If this particular function underpins adaptive memory, then individual differences in creativity may play a part in the degree to which people benefit from this advantage. We expected that highly creative individuals who engage more in divergent thinking would not necessarily benefit to a greater degree than less creative individuals, due to potential redundant processing. In this between-subjects experiment, participants rated words according to their relevance to the typical grasslands survival scenario or according to their pleasantness (a control common to the survival paradigm and known to enhance memory). While we did find a main effect of both condition (survival v. pleasantness) and creativity (high v. low), there was no interaction. This set of findings suggests that creative individuals may not benefit to a greater degree in survival processing, despite their ability to think divergently.