Reminiscing: the state of the art as a basis for practice

Int J Aging Hum Dev. 1991;33(1):1-32. doi: 10.2190/F8YP-D4X5-MV9M-CGMH.


This integrated review presents the state of the art in reminiscing and life review as derived from a review of the literature from 1960-1990. Reports, reviews, and research are categorized and critiqued with the purpose of clarifying the use of reminiscing for practice. Out of ninety-seven published articles describing reminiscing, only seven report negative outcomes; the remainder are either positive or nonevaluative. As a result, the author concludes that clinicians should use reminiscing in their practice, and researchers should continue to define the variables that lead to successful reminiscing.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Communication*
  • Geriatrics*
  • Humans
  • Life Change Events*
  • Memory*
  • Research / standards*
  • Research Design / standards