Collective mental time travel: remembering the past and imagining the future together

Kourken Michaelian*, John Sutton

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    21 Citations (Scopus)


    Bringing research on collective memory together with research on episodic future thought, Szpunar and Szpunar (Mem Stud 9(4):376–389, 2016) have recently developed the concept of collective future thought. Individual memory and individual future thought are increasingly seen as two forms of individual mental time travel, and it is natural to see collective memory and collective future thought as forms of collective mental time travel. But how seriously should the notion of collective mental time travel be taken? This article argues that, while collective mental time travel is disanalogous in important respects to individual mental time travel, the concept of collective mental time travel nevertheless provides a useful means of organizing existing findings, while also suggesting promising directions for future research.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)4933–4960
    Number of pages28
    Issue number12
    Early online date26 May 2017
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2019


    • memory
    • episodic future thought
    • mental time travel
    • collective memory
    • collective future thought
    • collective intentionality
    • intentional stance


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