Associated Systems Theory: A Systematic Approach to Cognitive Representations of Persons


From its inception, the purpose of the Advances in Social Cognition series has been to present and evaluate new theoretical advances in all areas of social cognition and information processing. An entire volume is devoted to each theory, allowing the theory to be evaluated from a variety of perspectives and permitting its implications for a wide range of issues to be examined. The series reflects two major characteristics of social cognition: the high level of activity in the field and the interstitial nature of the work.

The present volume examines the area of person impression formation with a detailed conceptualization of person impressions and the processes that give rise to their construction.

Carlston's lead article provides "a comprehensive account of the representational systems that underlie people's exposure to social stimuli and their ultimate production of memories, judgments and behaviors. The theory attempts to explain where different kinds of representations come from, how they are related to each other, and how they relate to important cognitive and behavioral activities." In pursuing this ambitious objective, Carlston identifies four fundamental systems -- visual, verbal, behavioral and affective -- and postulates the manner in which the systems interact.

Additional information

Includes content by:
  • Colin Martindale
  • Scott Van Manen
  • Susan T. Fiske
  • Robert S. Wyer Jr.
  • Klaus Fiedler
Publisher: Place of publication:
  • Hillsdale, NJ
Publication year:
  • 1994


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