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Keith E Rice's Integrated SocioPsychology Blog & Pages

Aligning, integrating and applying the behavioural sciences

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The Biological Impetus to Attachment

 Updated: 31 March 2017 The largely complementary attachment theories of John Bowlby (1969) and Rudolph Schaffer (Rudolph Schaffer & Peggy Emerson, 1964; Schaffer, 1996) mostly focus on the conscious cognitive and affective aspects of the formation of an attachment bond between the child and its primary caregiver (usually the mother), being in broad agreement that this is usually in place by the time the child is 6-7 months old. However, Bowlby (1958) was convinced that there existed an innate drive to attachment between child and mother and that this was adaptive. For evidence from an Evolutionary perspective, Bowlby was initially dependent on animal studies of imprinting such as those of Konrad Lorenz (1935). Lorenz had shown that animals such as geese and ducks imprint on the first thing they see after breaking the egg and treat it as their ‘mother’. (Famously, Lorenz got greylag goslings to imprint on his wellington boots, after which they would follow him around when wearing them!) Lorenz proposed that imprintability is genetically switched on and then switched off, effectively anticipating the development of Epigenetics. From this, Stephen Lea (1984) proposed that instinct gives the gosling chicks the concept or template of the mother but the environment has to supply… Read More

Attachment Theory

Updated: 10 October 2017 Mary Ainsworth & Sylvia Bell (1970) define an attachment as:  “An affectional tie that one person or animal forms between himself and another specific one – a tie that binds them together in space and over time. The behavioural hallmark of attachment is seeking to gain and maintain a certain degree of proximity to the object of attachment.” Rudolph Schaffer (1996) adds that separation from the attachment figure can lead to distress. Daphne Maurer & Charles Maurer (1988)  state that attachments “…are welded in the heat of interactions.”  Modern affective Attachment Theory, in its application to infants, has its origins in the work of John Bowlby. Bowlby was a psychoanalyst and psychiatrist working at the London Child Guidance Clinic in the 1930s. He had become interested in the effect of children’s disrupted relationships with their parents when, as a medical student, he volunteered to work in a residential children’s home and encountered a range of abnormal behaviours. His famous study of 44 ‘juvenile thieves’ (1944) identified Maternal Deprivation as being associated with delinquency and all sorts of problematic emotional and behavioural issues, including in the extreme what Bowlby termed ‘Affectionless Psychopathy’, the symptoms of which are now incorporated into Reactive Attachment Disorder. Bowlby’s… Read More

Bibliography K

 A    B    C    D    E    F    G    H    I    J    K    L    M    N    O    P-Q    R    S     T     U    V    W    X-Y-Z Kadushin, Alfred (1970): ‘Adopting Older Children’ (Columbia University Press) Kagan, Jerome (1976): ‘New Views on Cognitive Development’ in Journal of Youth & Adolescence 5/2 Kagan, Jerome (1984): ‘The Nature of the Child’ (Basic Books, New York NY) Kagan, Jerome (1994): ‘Galen’s Prophecy: Temperament in Human Nature’ (Basic Books, New York NY) Kagan, Jerome & Howard Moss (1962): ‘Birth to Maturity: a Study in Psychological Development’ (John Wiley & Sons, New York NY) Kagan, Jerome & Robert Klein (1973): ‘Cross-Cultural Perspectives on Early Development’ in American Psychologist #28 Kagan, Jerome, Steven Resnick & Nancy Snidman (1988): ‘Biological Bases of Childhood Shyness’ in Science #240 Kagan, Soeren (2015): ‘Germany’s Muslim Demographic Revolution’ (Gatestone Institute) http://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/6423/germany-muslim-demographic (Accessed: 23/11/15) Kahane, Adam (2012): ‘Working together to change the Future: Transformative Scenario Planning’ (Berrett-Koehler Publishers, San Francisco CA) Kahn, Meehran (2017): ‘UK GDP Growth slows to 0.3% in Q1’ in Financial Times (28 April) Kahn, Stephen, Gary Zimmerman, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi & Jacob Getzels (1985): ‘Relations Between Identity in Young Adulthood and Intimacy at Midlife’ in Journal of Personality & Social Psychology… Read More

Tribal War in South Ossetia

As the Russian-Georgian conflict in South Ossetia inches towards a volatile, dangerous and perhaps quite short-lived peace, it is a good time for those who would intervene – ‘soft cops’ like France’s President Nicolas Sarkozy and ‘hard cops’ such as American Vice President Dick Cheney – to study the nature of such conflicts, how they arise, how they can be managed, hopefully resolved and, better still, prevented. Better informed, their interventions may have a chance of working. With ethnic Russian breakaway forces in Abkhazia equally determined to resist Georgian attempts at reintegration and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov pronouncing that Moscow cannot work with Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili, with both armies bloodied and ready to resume combat at the slightest provocation, with civilian dead estimated in the thousands and the two governments hurling accusations of ethnic cleansing and would-be genocide at each other, there is every potential for an awful lot more lives to be lost in the next few months. At root South Ossetia is a conflict of PURPLE tribalism. The PURPLE vMEME seeks security in belonging; in belonging to some, it demarks itself from others – all too easily leading to prejudice & discrimination against those who are “not… Read More