The Structure and Recall of Narrative Prose
CALIFORNIA UNIV SAN DIEGO LA JOLLA CENTER FOR HUMAN INFORMATION PROCESSING
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This report describes a study of the recall of narrative prose. Subjects listened to repeated presentations of a tape recording of two pages from a history book, with verbal recalls collected after each presentation. The elements of the passage were organized according to a serial structure based on order in the passage and a story grammar structure based on casual relations. While the serial structure at first influenced which elements of the passage were remembered, as the subjects remembered more of the passage, the story grammar structure became the dominant influence over the elements remembered on subsequent recalls.