Such children feel confident that the attachment figure will be available to meet their needs. Securely attached infants are easily soothed by the attachment figure when upset.
Abstract Attachment theory has been generating creative and impactful research for almost half a century. In this article we focus on the documented antecedents and consequences of individual differences in infant attachment patterns, suggesting topics for further theoretical clarification, research, clinical interventions, and policy applications.
We also review connections between attachment and a child psychopathology, b neurobiology, c health and immune function, d empathy, compassion, and altruism, e school readiness, and f culture.
We conclude with clinical-translational and public policy applications of attachment research that could reduce the occurrence and maintenance of insecure attachment during infancy and beyond.
Our goal is to inspire researchers to continue advancing the field by finding new ways to tackle long-standing questions and by generating and testing novel hypotheses. Using a combination of case studies and statistical methods novel at the time for psychoanalysts to examine the precursors of delinquency, Bowlby arrived at his initial empirical insight: The precursors of emotional disorders and delinquency could be found in early attachment-related experiences, specifically separations from, or inconsistent or harsh treatment by, mothers and often fathers or other men who were involved with the mothers.
Over the subsequent decades, as readers of this journal know, he built a complex and highly generative theory of attachment.
Unlike other psychoanalytic writers of his generation, Bowlby formed a working relationship with a very talented empirically oriented researcher, Mary Ainsworth. Her careful observations, first in Uganda Ainsworth, and later in Baltimore, led to a detailed specification of aspects of maternal behavior that preceded individual differences in infant attachment.
In the present article, space limitations lead us to focus principally on attachment processes early in life and consider the adult attachment literature largely in relation to parental predictors of infant attachment.
Much has been learned at each of several analytic levels, including behavior, cognition, emotion, physiology, and genetics.
Figure 1 summarizes this literature in a simple model. We have selected several of the components in Figure 1 for further discussion. For each component, following a brief background and review of the current state of knowledge, we offer suggestions for future research, based largely on identification of gaps in theory or methodological innovations that make new lines of discovery possible.
We begin by considering one of the central concepts of attachment theory, the internal working model, followed by a consideration of physiological mechanisms that also help to explain the influence of early attachments.
Next, we consider the caregiving behavior that predicts infant attachment and the perplexing issue of the transmission gap between parental Adult Attachment Interview AAI classifications and infant Strange Situation classifications.
We then examine connections between attachment and a child psychopathology, b neurobiology, c health and immune function, d empathy, compassion, and altruism, e school readiness, and f culture. Finally, we discuss the translational application of attachment research to reducing the risk of developing or maintaining insecure attachments and the policy implications of attachment research.Attachment Theory — originally developed by psychiatrist and psychologist John Bowlby (), and later on extended and categorized by developmental psychologist, Mary Ainsworth.
Under this theory, four widely recognized types of attachment are secure, avoidant, resistant and disorganized. Attachment theory has had a profound influence upon child care policies, as well as principles of basic clinical practice for children. Critics of attachment theory point out the lack of parental attachment in many non-Western societies.
References. Bowlby, John.
Attachment and Loss. Mary Ainsworth (December 1, – March 21, ) was a developmental psychologist perhaps best known for her Strange Situation assessment and contributions to the area of attachment theory. Ainsworth elaborated on Bowlby's research on attachment and developed an approach to observing a child's attachment to a caregiver.
Mary Ainsworth is a pivotal figure in psychology. She invented one of the most widely used assessment tools for discovering a child's attachment style. a video of Mary Ainsworth’s Strange Situation experiment. How does this apply today?
By defining specific types of attachment styles, Mary Ainsworth was able to determine the best parenting styles as well as possible difficulties a particular child may face later on in life. Apr 07, · Dr. Ainsworth's research contributed significantly to attachment theory, which emphasizes the importance of intimate human relationships, or attachments, in shaping children's .