Posthypnotic amnesia for material learned before or during hypnosis

Explicit and implicit memory effects

A. J. Barnier*, R. A. Bryant, S. Briscoe

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Citations (Scopus)


This article focuses on dissociations between explicit and implicit expressions of memory during posthypnotic amnesia (PHA). Despite evidence of such dissociations, experimental design in this area has not always been consistent with contemporary memory research. Within a paradigm that aimed for conceptual and methodological clarity, we presented 40 high and 38 low hypnotizable individuals with a word list either before or during hypnosis, gave them a PHA suggestion for the word list, and tested them on explicit and implicit memory tasks. In the absence of conscious recollection, highs showed equivalent levels of priming (perceptual and semantic) to lows. However, when analysis focused only on those highs who remained amnesic after the implicit memory tasks, we confirmed perceptual, but not semantic, priming. These findings highlight the impact of methodological choices on theoretical interpretations of memory performance following a suggestion for PHA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)286-304
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes

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