Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




Faculty of Science

First Advisor

Anne Wilson

Advisor Role

Thesis Supervisor


The current research examined whether the impact of people's past conflicts on their current relationships is associated with (1) the way people think about the conflicts, (2) their self-regard. Specifically, we expected that people's relationships should be more negatively influenced if they recall conflicts in a vivid manner, focusing on "how" the conflicts happened and recalling them in vivid detail, rather than if they recall conflicts in a pallid manner, focusing on "why" the conflict occurred and recalling little detail. We also predicted that past conflicts are more likely to adversely affect the appraisals of the relationships of low self-esteem people than those of high self-esteem people. Three studies were conducted to test the hypotheses. Participants recalled a past conflict with their partner in either a vivid or pallid manner according to the manipulation. Participants' self-esteem and their subsequent evaluations of the conflict and their relationship were measured. The hypothesis concerning self-esteem but not the one concerning recall style was supported.

Convocation Year


Convocation Season


Included in

Psychology Commons