INHIBITION OF THOUGHT CATEGORIES UNDER STRESS: AN EXPLORATORY STUDY
MARYLAND UNIV BALTIMORE DENTAL SCHOOL
Pagination or Media Count:
The possibility of learning to stop thinking as a means of avoiding punishment was investigated. A list of words known to produce either a high proportion of antonyms or synonyms was presented 1 at a time to individual subjects. During the presentation of the first half of the list half of the subjects were shocked when they gave an antonym to an antonym-producing word, the other half when they gave a synonym to a synonym-producing word. The remainder of the list was presented without shock. The test results for those subjects who figured out the shock pattern were eliminated. The response latencies and frequencies for antonym-producing words did not differ under synonym or antonym shock. the latencies for response to the synonym-producing words increased under the synonym shock condition, but the frequency of synonym response declined under the antonym shock condition instead of the synonym shock condition. Several methodological issues are suggested as possible reasons for the unsatisfactory results.