|Health, toy safety, psychology, and whatever interests us
Attachment Security in Infancy and its Consequences
To Print This Page: <ctrl+p>, <enter> (Windows)
Bowlby's Theory of Attachment: a balance between security and exploration
In the 1940s, John Bowlby (1988; cited in Cassidy, 1999) observed that the
nature of the mother-child relationship was of importance not only to the later
functioning of the child, but also of immediate importance. He observed that
children experience intense distress when separated from their mothers, even if
they were primarily fed and physically cared for by others. Bowlby came to
wonder why the mother is so important to the child. At the time, the child's
ties to the mother were commonly explained either by psychoanalytic or
learning theorists as a secondary drive which develops because the mother feeds
the infant. Both bodies of theory posited that the pleasure experienced upon
having hunger drives satisfied comes to be associated with the mother's presence
in positive ways (Cassidy, 1999) .
Dissatisfied with current explanations of the child's attachments, Bowlby
developed a theory of a biologically based desire for proximity to an attachment
object that arose in humans and in many other species through the process of
natural selection. (Bowlby's lifelong interest in evolutionary theory was
reflected, among other things, in his biography of Charles Darwin). Bowlby
proposed that during the time when humans were evolving to the species as we
observe it presently, genetic selection favored attachment behaviors because
they increased the likelihood of child-mother proximity, which in turn increased
the likelihood of protection and provided survival advantage.
Bowlby conceived of his hypothesized attachment drive as primary, equal in
status to that of nutrition, involving a homeostatic drive mechanism for
proximity to the primary attachment object. This mechanism can be activated
either by stress or the threat of stress; among these stresses are included such
presumably innately programmed stimuli as loud noises, large looming objects,
sudden darkness, hunger, illness, novelty, discrepancy, or unexpected stimuli or
events, and pain or physical discomfort; or by the perceived loss of or
rejection by the attachment object, generally the mother.
Bowlby considered the attachment drive system as different from that of hunger, in that it is never turned off completely, but rather functions more like physiological systems such as those regulating blood pressure and body temperature within certain preferred limits. This leaves open the question as why such a drive mechanism would not simply require that the child maintain as close a degree of contact as physically possible as much of the time as possible. According to Bowlby, the attachment behavioral system can be fully understood only in terms of its relation to other biologically based behavioral systems.
Bowlby suggested that the attachment drive existed alongside and in complex relationship with other drives and innate behavioral systems; relevant to the present question is the drive for exploration and increasing mastery of the environment. Piaget (1954) hypothesized that the child has an inherent motive to explore. This, too, has survival advantage. According to Bowlby, the innate drive to explore confers survival advantage by providing information about the working of the environment. Yet unlimited exploration with no regard to potential hazards can be dangerous. The attachment and exploratory behavioral systems are complementary and mutually inhibiting, ensuring that while the child is protected by maintaining proximity to attachment figures, he or she is also able to learn about the environment and gain mastery and skills through exploration. The dynamic equilibrium between these two behavioral systems is even more significant for development and survival than either in isolation.
Ainsworth (cited in Cassidy, 1999) referred to an
"attachment-exploration balance". Most infants respond to a specific
situation after assessing both the environment's characteristics according to
the degree of threat, novelty, or interest, and the mother's availability and
likely behavior. When the infant is distressed, or experiences the environment
as dangerous, exploration is unlikely, and the infant is more likely to seek
proximity to the caregiver. When the attachment system is activated by such
things as separation from or unavailability of the attachment figure, illness,
fatigue, unfamiliar surroundings, or any other form of stress, infant
exploration and play decline. Conversely, when attachment is not activated
(e.g., when a healthy, well-rested infant is in a comfortable setting with an
attachment figure nearby), exploration and play are the likely outcome. A
substantial body of research has demonstrated compelling evidence of the
theoretically predicted associations between maternal availability and infant
exploration (Bergmann, 1999; Ainsworth and Wittig, 1969 cited in Cassidy, 1999)
According to Bowlby, behaviors that arise from the attachment drive are organized into an "attachment behavioral system", a concept from ethology that describes a species-specific system of behaviors that lead to certain outcomes that contribute to reproductive fitness. This system does not consist of a set of behaviors that are constantly and uniformly operative over the lifespan. Rather, a variety of behaviors can serve the function of maintaining proximity to the attachment figure. The very young infant who is as yet unable to locomote in the direction of its mother has available such behaviors as reaching, crying, smiling, and vocalizing. As the child matures into an adult, he or she is able to make use of crawling, walking, driving, telephoning, and writing letters.
Bowlby referred to an organization or hierarchy of "attachment bonds", a special type of "affectional bond", within the individual. Throughout the lifespan individuals form a variety of important affectional bonds that are not attachments. An affectional bond is persistent; it involves a specific person not interchangeable with anyone else; the relationship is emotionally significant; it motivates a desire for proximity; and the individual feels distressed at involuntary separation from the affectional object. In addition to these five criteria, an additional criterion exists for an attachment bond: the individual seeks security and comfort in the relationship with the attachment object. The attachment is secure if the feeling of security is achieved, and insecure if not; it is the seeking of security that is the defining feature. The attachment bond exists consistently over time, whether or not attachment behavior is present.
Strength of attachment behaviors does not necessarily reflect strength of the
attachment bond. According to Ainsworth (cited in Cassidy, 1999), "...an
infant who explores when his mother is present is not necessarily less attached
than one who constantly seeks proximity to his mother...his freedom to explore
away from her may well reflect the healthy security provided by a secure
attachment relationship". Certainly, this is precisely the kind of thing
observed in the Strange Situation (see below).
What is important to note is that a child is capable of multiple attachments,
and these exist in an apparent hierarchy. Most children become attached to more
than one familiar person during their first year. According to Bowlby,
"responsiveness to crying and readiness to interact socially are the most
relevant variables" in determining who will serve as an attachment figure.
In most cultures this means that the biological parents, older siblings,
grandparents, aunts, and uncles are most likely to serve as attachment figures,
in pretty much that order.
This leads to the question of why an infant requires a primary attachment figure, even when multiple strong attachments are available. Bowlby believed that this tendency contributes to infant survival and reproductive fitness by establishing a relationship in which the primary attachment figure assumes principal responsibility for the child. This should help ensure that care of the child is not overlooked. An alternative system, in which many caregivers have equal responsibility for many offspring, might leave any individual child falling between the cracks. Further, when faced with danger, the child does not have to make a series of assessments and judgments about who may be the most readily available and most responsive caregiver. Rather, the child has a quick and automatic response to seek the principal attachment figure.
Bowlby described "parental bonds" to children and "child
attachments" to parents: parental attempts to seek security from the child
are, according to Bowlby, almost always not only a sign of pathology in the
parent but also a cause of it in the child. [Author's note: the parent's seeking
of security from the child has been demonstrated by Bert Karon as associated
with subsequent or ongoing behavioral pathology and possibly Schizophrenia in
the child. (Karon et al, 1994] I would suggest that active seeking
of security from the child on the part of the parent may be unhealthy, but that
in fact the nature of the attachment bond is essentially the same in both
The Quality of Attachment, its Origins, Persistence, and Consequences
A research assistant of Bowlby's, Mary Ainsworth, demonstrated that there are varieties of attachment between the child and its mother. Using a technique known as the "Strange Situation", in which the mother leaves the child in a novel situation, returns after a short absence, and the nature of the child's exploratory behavior and response to the returning parent is evaluated, she identified infants that showed both secure and insecure attachments.
In her original study (Ainsworth, 1977, cited in Bowlby, 1988), Ainsworth observed a small group of infants at 12 months of age in the Strange Situation, a standardized scenario consisting in its full version of eight episodes. Briefly, the mother twice leaves her baby alone or with a stranger and returns twice to be reunited with the child. The behavior of the infant or older child while alone, while stranger is attempting to interact with him or her, and upon return of the mother is assessed. She observed variations in behavior that classified the infants into four categories: secure, insecure-avoidant, insecure-resistant or ambivalent, and disorganized or disoriented. Studies of infants using this technique have been replicated hundreds of times, with remarkably consistent results.
On reunion after brief separation from parents, securely attached
children at 12 months seek physical contact, proximity, and interaction. If
upset after the separation, they are readily soothed by parents, and return to
exploration and play. At age 6, securely attached children initiate conversation
and pleasant interaction with parents and are responsive to parents' overtures.
They remain calm throughout.
It has been possible to associate parenting styles with each type of child. Parents of the secure children could be generally characterized as responsive to their infants' needs, permitting the infants to play an active role in determining the onset, pacing, and end of activities, beginning with feeding in early infancy. Mother's of babies with insecure-avoidant type of attachment tend to be unavailable and rejecting. They are generally unresponsive to the infant's signals, maintain little close bodily contact, and often display anger or irritation to their infants. Parents of insecure-resistant infants are distinguished by inconsistency in dealing with their children. They respond to their babies' needs at times, other times not, and are generally unaffectionate and awkward with them. The most seriously disordered parenting is found among parents whose infants are of the insecure-disorganized type. These parents often neglect their babies or abuse them physically. This form of attachment behavior seen in the infant tends also to be correlated with diagnoses of serious psychopathology in the mother.
Bowlby (1988, p. 47), reports that Ainsworth, in assessing the mother's behavior in relation to the types of attachment, demonstrated that the primary determinant of attachment type seemed to be the degree to which the mother seems constantly to be tuned in to receiving her baby's signals, how accurately she interprets them, and how promptly and appropriately she responds to them.
Beebe and Lachmann (1988) report a series of studies detailing the patterns
of mother-child interaction which influence attachment in great detail,
demonstrating variations in the adequacy with which mothers respond sensitively
to their infants. Working with infants ages three to four months, they observed
mothers and their infants in face-to-face play, where the only goals are mutual
attention and delight. The situation elicits the infant's greatest communicative
skill. They observed a range of matching of temporal patterns and affective
patterns, in which mothers were more or less sensitive to their infants' needs
to regulate the pace of the interaction.
Beebe and Lachmann present evidence that imitating facial expressions can produce physiological responses in the imitator that accurately reflect the same state in the person whom they are imitating. They suggest that mutual matching of affective states through mirroring facial expressions provides to the infant information about the subjective state of the mother which cannot be accessed directly.
In Beebe's discussion of their results, they suggest that these patterns of
the earliest social interactions are retained as preverbal representations by
the infant, and that the infant learns what to expect from the mother. Further,
these representations become part of the infant's representation of the mother
herself, and of the responses that are required in dealing with her, whether
those responses are open and mutual or require that he regulate his own behavior
and own arousal without the help of or in spite of the responses of the mother.
They discuss studies which show that in addition to representations of the
mother's sensitivity to the infant's timing and level of arousal, these episodes
of face-to-face play also include the synchronization of affective states,
through the copying of facial expressions.
The Role of Temperament
Bowlby (1988, p. 49) addresses the question of whether infants can play a
significant role in determining the nature of the interaction between mother and
child and concludes that they do not, specifically denying the contention that
some infants are "born difficult" and elicit some degree of adverse
reaction from the mother. He cites findings of Ainsworth's during the first
three months of the lives of the infants she was observing, that there was no
correlation between the amount of crying a baby did and the way his mother was
treating him; whereas by the end of the first year mothers who had attended
promptly to their crying babies had babies who cried much less than did the
babies of the mothers who had left them to cry.
Hesse (1999) summarizes evidence that hereditary and stable characteristics are not predominantly operative in attachment security of infants as measured by the Strange Situation. If they were, then secure, avoidant, or resistant infants should behave similarly with each parent. Strange Situation responses are, however, largely independent, with many infants judged secure with one parent and insecure with the other. Also, infants who are insecure with their mothers at 12 months are likely to become secure by 18 months if there are favorable changes in the mother's life circumstances. Finally, if it were presumed that mothers are responding (i.e., sensitively vs. insensitively) to "easy" versus "difficult" infant temperament [see disclaimer above] , then handicapped, sick, and otherwise "difficult" infants should not be as likely to be judged secure as infants in low risk samples. However, this is not the case.
As the final word on this topic, at least in the present article, I would like to point out that Kagan (1998) has demonstrated a relatively rare type of infant, characterized by broad face, sturdy build, and low autonomic responsivity, who is classed as uninhibited virtually regardless of the mother's behavior, and an opposite type, whom he classes as shy or inhibited, again, regardless of parental style.
Pursuing the consequences of maternal-infant interactions later in the
lifespan, Mary Main and a variety of co-workers (1985; also cited in Hesse,
1999) developed a procedure called The Adult Attachment Interview, which
assessed a parent's memories and representations of attachments and emotions
regarding his or her own parents. Replicable and consistent data collected over
many years of research has shown that characteristics of the parent's report of
perceptions of his or her relationship with his or her own parents was highly
and reliably correlated with the classification of the reporting parent's own
child in the Strange Situation.
Main and Goldwyn's (cited in Hesse, 1999) initial work showed that rating scales reflecting a parent's current state of mind with respect to his or her own attachment experiences were strongly correlated to aspects of the infant's behavior toward that parent in the Strange Situation five years previously. In the Adult Attachment Interview, parents are asked to produce and reflect upon memories related to attachment in a coherent discourse with the interviewer. This is not as easy as it at first seems, since the interview moves rapidly, requiring the speaker to reflect upon and answer a multitude of complex questions regarding life history. Ample opportunities are provided for speakers to contradict themselves, find themselves unable to answer questions clearly, and/or to be stimulated into excessively lengthy or digressive discussions on particular topics. Respondents are classified "secure/autonomous" when they speak coherently and interactively with the interviewer about their experiences, whether experiences themselves are reported as having been favorable or unfavorable. They answer questions with sufficient but not excessive elaboration, and then return the conversational initiative to the interviewer. By this system, an individual providing a coherent narrative that includes descriptions of physical or sexual abuse by parents will still be judged secure/autonomous. The children of coherent speakers are consistently classified as secure.
Respondents are classified as "dismissing" when the responses appear to minimize the discussion or importance of attachment-related experiences. Responses are typically internally inconsistent, and often excessively short. Relationships with parents are usually described as highly favorable, but without supporting evidence, and such evidence as is given tends to contradict the global evaluation. Children of speakers in this category are consistently classified as insecure-avoidant.
Respondents classified as "preoccupied" are often unable to maintain a focus on or direct responses to a given question. Instead, memories aroused by the question, rather than the intent of the question itself, seem to draw the subject's attention and guide the subject's speech. This can result in lengthy, angry recounting of childhood interactions with parents, which may inappropriately move into the present tense or into discussions of a present relationship. The speaker may also digress to remote topics, use vague language, and describ a parent negatively and positively in the same sentence. Infants of these speakers are typically judged insecure-resistant/ambivalent.
Respondents classified as "unresolved/disorganized" frequently demonstrated substantial lapses in reasoning or discourse. For example, the individual may briefly indicated belief that the dead person is still alive in the physical sense, or that this person was killed by a childhood thought. The respondent may lapse into prolonged silence or eulogistic speech. Infants of speakers in this category are typically classified as disorganized/disoriented.
Note that none of these categories of interview response has any relation to
the actual content of the responses, but rather to the manner in which the
subject's memories and experiences are described in response to the interview
questions. It is thus not the experiences of the parent per se that predicts
care giving behavior, but rather the manner in which the parent represents these
experiences in his or her own mind and talks about them when asked.
To rule out the possibility that Adult Attachment Interview - Strange Situation correlations might be the result of the influence of the infant upon the parent's state of mind, later studies administered the interview prior to the birth of the subject's first child. Again, a high correlation between the two measures resulted.
A relatively new area of investigation (Hesse, 1999) which I find
particularly fascinating and relevant to several of the topics covered in the
present paper, involves the relationship among unresolved parental attachment
status as measured by the Adult Attachment Interview, frightened or frightening
parental behavior, and disorganized infant attachment as measured in the Strange
Situation. Most studies investigating care-giving behavior as related to adult
attachment status have focused upon differences in "sensitive
responsiveness" in secure vs. insecure parents. (See section on the work of
Beebe et al., above.) Main and Hesse (1999, 1990, cited in Hesse, 1999) have
suggested that lapses of reasoning during discussion of traumatic events
produced by the insecure-unresolved parents may stem from alterations in normal
consciousness caused by intrusion of dissociated, frightening ideas or memories.
In this discussion of attachment behavior, it is important to make the distinction between infant attachment, which is assessed in regard to attachment to a particular parent, and adult attitudes and states of mind relative to attachment, assessed by the Adult Attachment Interview, and not related to whether or not the adult is insecurely attached to another person at the time of interview.
The Child's Representation and Internalization of Self and the Mother
In order for the infant to develop representations of himself, his mother or
other primary caregiver, and the expected nature of their interactions, it is
obviously necessary that infants be capable of constructing and retaining these
representations in some form of nonverbal or preverbal memory. Self and object
representation and constancy has been an area of theorizing for the
psychoanalysts, whose general view has been that an infant emerges from a fusion
or symbiosis with the mother only toward the latter part of the first year of
life, and that for the first couple of months after birth the infant is
generally unresponsive and unaware of the physical and social environment, but
rather lives in a sort of autistic fantasy. Over the past 25 years, the notion
that even a very young infant does not distinguish itself as separate from its
environment nor develops representations of objects and events has been
systematically refuted by experimental observations of infants by a large number
Bowlby (1988, chapter 6) provides a detailed discussion of the consequences for the individual of the acquisition of maladaptive representations of interactions with parents. According to Bowlby, children of especially insensitive parents have stopped communicating their distress to the parents by the age of twelve months. Bowlby elucidates the process by which physical, sexual, or psychological abuse leads to particular kinds of psychopathology in children and later in adulthood, by causing paradoxical, contradictory, or impossible representations of the parent and interactions with the parent to be established as part of the child's core sense of self, and sense of himself in relation to others. A typical result of this situation is that much of the child's emotions and early perceptions become unavailable to him, and the ability to form relationships is seriously and perhaps permanently impaired.
Bowlby (1988, chapter 8) discusses the implications of his theory for psychotherapy (he was an analytically oriented psychotherapist before he engaged in behavioral research). According to Bowlby, the therapist applying attachment theory provides the conditions in which the patient can explore and restructure representational models of himself and his attachment figures. To do this he provides five things:
Annie Bergmann (1999) presents in detail the clinical and case study data accumulated in decades of work at the Mahler clinic and nursery in New York. She describes anecdotally the degrees of sensitivity or insensitivity observed in interactions between attending mothers and their infants. This is reflected in the case studies of seriously disturbed, in fact diagnostically psychotic or autistic children, in which a consistently sensitive attachment figure and secure base is provided by the therapist in the therapeutic situation. This process of reattachment, although occurring only for an hour or so several days a week, proves adequate in its healing capacity, judging by the succesful results of the clinic.
John Bowlby has formulated a theory of attachment behavior grounded in ethology and modern evolutionary theory. Research by Beebe, Stern, Ainsworth, Main, and many others have elucidated the mechanisms through which variations and types of maternal-infant interaction can affect the infant's models of self, mother or other principal caregiver, and self with other, and the effects of these models on the infant's and the growing child's attachment behaviors, sense of security and the resulting ability or inability to interact with the world, to form healthy attachments through the lifespan, and to provide parenting for his or her own offspring.
Contributions of genetics and heredity to the tendency to form secure attachments remain an open question. It appears that there exist some temperamental [see disclaimer above] types that are particularly vulnerable or invulnerable to the sensitivity of maternal care, but that generally speaking, attunement of the mother's behavior to the infant's needs, beginning at birth, is the prime determinant of the security of the infants attachment to the mother, and sense of security and efficacy throughout life. Especially disordered patterns of infant-maternal interaction are shown to result in disordered self-perception, and to be related to certain classes of psychopathology. The nature of the parent-child interaction is shown to be reflected in the adult's concept of his or her early attachment relationships, and thus to have an intergenerational effect on that adult's adequacy as a parent. Attachment theory, finally, implies that a key feature of successful psychotherapy is its ability to provide a secure, temporary object for reattachment.
A few things occurred to me while reading the material for this paper. Bowlby
seems to be saying that the attachment to the primary caregiver remains a
constant, more or less, throughout the life span. If that is true, it would make
it a rarity that an adult would be able to cope effectively with the eventual
and inevitable loss of that person. I think that the processes of representation
to which he subscribes allow a transfer of the security-providing qualities of
the attachment objectís representation by the individual to become part of the
individualís concept of self.
Speaking of other sorts of security, Kagan (1994) presents the concept that any relative competence or superiority possessed by the individual with respect to his physical and social environment, that is, to the expectation and demands he faces, adds to a sense of security with all its consequences for the freedom to behave. This, I think is exemplified in Mahlerís proposed construct of the "practising subphase". Generally speaking, casual observation tells us that physical, intellectual, or other forms of perceived adequacy or superiority provide an individual with some of the security associated to secure attachment situations. Vince Lombardi, legendary (deceased) former coach of the Green Bay Packers, is quoted as saying "Fatigue makes cowards of us all". The behavioral results of being in shape, being smart enough, being healthy, even being good enough at making money, can be hard to distinguish from being securely attached to a consistently available other person, until you look at behaviors related specifically to the interpersonal. Thus, each capacity within the person results in a more or less persistent self-representation of that capacity which permits effective (secure) behavior in ways related to that capacity.
Ainsworth, M. D. S., Blehar, M., Waters, & Wall, S. (1978). Patterns of attachment: A psychological study of the strange situation. Hillsdale, N. J.: Erlbaum
Beebe, Beatrice, and Lachmann, Frank M. (1988). The Contribution of Mother-Infant Mutual Influence to the Origins of Self- and Object Representations. Psychoanalytic Psychology, (1988), 5: 305 - 337. For
Bergman, Anni. (1999) Ours, Yours, Mine: mutuality and the emergence of the separate self. Northvale, New Jersey: Jason Aronson, Inc.
Bowlby, John (1988) A Secure Base New York: Basic Books, Inc.
Cassidy, Jude (1999) The Nature of the Child's Ties. Ch. 1 in Cassidy, J., and Shaver, P. R., ed., Handbook of Attachment: Theory, research, and Clinical Applications.
Champagne FA, Chretien P, Stevenson CW, Zhang TY, Gratton A, Meaney MJ. (2004). Variations in nucleus accumbens dopamine associated with individual differences in maternal behavior in the rat. J Neuroscience 24(17):4113-23
Dawkins, Richard (1976). The Selfish Gene. London: Oxford Press.
Gunnar, Megan R. (1994) Psychoendocrine studies of Temperament and Stress in Early Chidhood: Expanding Current Models. in Bates, John E. & Wachs, Theodore D. (Editors) (1994) Temperament: Individual Diferences at the Interface of Biology & Behavior Pp 175 - 198.
Reviews findings of a number of researchers egarding the role of the two major neuroendocrine stress-sensitive systems: sympathetic-adrenomedullary, which is fast-acting and produces adrenaline and noradrenaline; and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenocortical (HPA - cortisol-secreting), which acts more slowly and produces effects over a longer period. Author points out that Kagan's findings of elevated cortisol in inhibited children has not been consistently replicated, although other signs of autonomic stress reactions appear consistent. It appears sympathetic activity may reflect effort, excitement, and vigilance, but HPA activation indicates an added negative emotional component, and is situational. Author argues that inhibited children may actually use withdrawal as coping mechanism to avoid emotionally unpleasant HPA stress response. Outgoing children, as well as dominant males, show higher cortisol levels in group experiences of novelty or stress, because they seek out rather than avoid stressful experience. [This would seem to suggest that inhibited/uninhibited dimension is the expression of a more fundamental construct.]
Data shows that inhibited children in new social settings have lower, not higher cortisol levels than bold children, but this reverses as social group becomes more familiar. Results are reported showing correlation of attachment types and cortisol levels after Strange Situation in inhibited vs uninhibited 18-month infants.
Hesse, Erik (1999) The Adult Attachment Interview. Ch. 19 in Cassidy, J., and Shaver, P. R., ed., Handbook of Attachment: Theory, research, and Clinical Applications.
Lyons-Ruth, K., Spielman, E. (2004). DISORGANIZED INFANT ATTACHMENT STRATEGIES AND HELPLESS-FEARFUL PROFILES OF PARENTING: INTEGRATING ATTACHMENT RESEARCH WITH CLINICAL INTERVENTION. Infant Ment Health J. 25(4): 318Ė335
Kagan, Jerome (1989) Temperamental Contributions to Social Behavior (1988 APA Award Address). American Psychologist, 44(4), 668-674
Auth. 2008: The whole idea of temperament may turn out to be - well -
politely - off track, dead end, etc. See the more recent works of Meaney
and his group (reference below). [see disclaimer above]
Presents study which selected 54 consistently inhibited and 53 consistently uninhibited children from a group of 400. Behavioral styles at 21 or 31 months was predictive of behavior at 7 1/2 years. Inhibited children were shy, cautious in situations of moderate risk, and motorically tense. An argument is made for the discontinuity of the observed phenomena, i.e., it is suggested that these are types rather than points on a normal continuum. A physiological index was obtained for each child, comprising heart rate, heart rate variability, morning (salivary) cortisol levels, and other parameters indicative of autononomic arousal. This index correlated highly with the index of behavioral inhibition at all ages. The author presents a discussion of possible neural pathways, and concludes with the suggestion that "eventual display of inhibited behavior in the second year of life requires some form of environmental stress in order to actualize the temperamental disposition".
Kagan, J. (1994) Galen's Prophecy: Temperament in Human Nature. New York: Basic Books
This book was recommended by the author as representative of the current
state of knowledge in temperament research [phone interview, 7/25/01].
Kagan, Jerome. (1998) Temperament in Damon, W. (Ed) Handbook of Child Psychology, v. 3 pp. 177-209 New York: John Wiley & Sons
Karon BP, Widener, AJ (1994) Is there really a Schizophrenogenic Parent?
Psychoanalytic Psychology 11(1):47-61 .
Kegan, Robert. (1982) The Evolving Self. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press.
Liu D, Diorio J, Day JC, Francis DD, Meaney MJ (2000). Maternal care, hippocampal synaptogenesis and cognitive development in rats. Nature Neuroscience 3(8):799-806. Pups of high-grooming M's showed enhanced HC development, cognitive ability as adults; pups of low-grooming dams did also if cross-fostered to high-contact M's. High-contact pups were not as sensitive to rearing effects because HC receptors were more mature at birth.
Main, M., Kaplan, N., & Cassidy, J. (1985) Security in infancy, childhood, and adulthood: A move to the level of representation. In I. Bretherton & E. Waters (Eds.), Growing points of attachment theory and research. Monographs of the Society for Research in Child Development, 50 (1 - 2, Serial Number 209), 66-104.
Piaget, J. (1954). The construction of reality in the Child. New York: Basic Books.
Rovee-collier, C., & Dufault, D. (1991). Multiple contexts and memory retrieval at three months. Developmental Psychobiology, 24, 39-49.
Stern, Daniel N. (1985) The Interpersonal World of the Infant. New York: Basic Books.
Werner, J. S., and Siqueland, E. R. (1978). Visual recognition memory in the preterm infants. Infant Behavior and Development, 1, 79 to 84
Grolnick, Simon A. (1990). The Work and Play of Winnicott. Northvale, New Jersey: Jason Aronson, Inc.