Publication details [#2857]

Abed, Farough. 1994. Visual puns as interactive illustrations: Their effects on recognition memory. Bakhtiniana: Revista de Estudos do Discurso 9 (1) : 45–60. 16 pp.


Whereas typical interactive illustrations associate two objects, others associate two ideas and require a higher level cognitive processing. A typical illustrations are especially useful for influencing affective behavior and can set an emotional tone to accompany factual information. Included in this class are visual puns, which combine two or more symbols (picture and/or text) to form a new meaning. The viewer must mentally elaborate on the visual stimulus to interpret the message. In this study, two treatment groups were shown either 15 interactive visual puns or 15 noninteractive images with equivalent messages. These images were intermixed with either meaningful or nonmeaningful, noninteractive distractors. Recognition tests that were administered immediately and at 2 weeks and 8 weeks revealed that visual puns generally facilitated recognition memory relative to noninteractive images. Memory loss for visual puns was seen in the context of meaningful distractors but not with nonmeaningful distractors. (Farough Abed)