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Strange Situation AAAAAhhhhh. Cross-cultural Variation Child rearing practices vary considerably from place to place – Environment – Traditions – Beliefs.

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Presentation on theme: "Strange Situation AAAAAhhhhh. Cross-cultural Variation Child rearing practices vary considerably from place to place – Environment – Traditions – Beliefs."— Presentation transcript:

1 Strange Situation AAAAAhhhhh

2 Cross-cultural Variation Child rearing practices vary considerably from place to place – Environment – Traditions – Beliefs about children Does this result in different attachment patterns? Universal vs. culturally specific

3 Cross-cultural Research Van Ijzendoorn & Kroonenberg (1988) – Meta analysis of studies of attachment in different countries – Looked at proportions of different SSC attachment types Secure attachment always the most common, but significant variation

4 Cross-cultural Research SecureAvoidantResistant USA65%21%14% Regular close contact Germany57%35%8% Independence is valued Israel64%7%29% Communal care in kibbutz Japan68%5%27% Mother & child rarely separated

5 Cross-cultural Research Many studies have limited samples – Cannot claim to be representative of each culture – E.g. in Israel kibbutz vs. urban Probably more variation within cultures than between them

6 Cross-cultural Research Reliable findings – Grossman & Grossman (1991) - high proportion of ‘ avoidant ’ children in Germany – Takahashi (1990) - 32% of children resistant; none avoidant From US/UK point of view such findings might seem alarming

7 Cross-cultural Research Important not to judge other cultures from our own perspective – Japan – children rarely separated from mother – find SSC very stressful –‘ Avoidant ’ behaviour very rude – actively discouraged – Germany – greater personal distance is the norm; proximity seeking not encouraged

8 Cross-cultural Variation Findings suggest attachment has some universal features There is variation both between and within cultures SSC may not be best tool for cross-cultural research as it assumes behaviour always has same significance as in US/UK

9 Aims, procedures, findings, conclusions, criticism. APFCC

10 Next -To understand what is meant by separation, privation and institutionalisation -To discover the range of effects these experiences have on children -To consider factors which influence whether these effects are permanent or temporary

11 Privation Bowlby’s Maternal Deprivation Hypothesis (1953) – Critical period – first 12 months – Monotropy – innate tendency to bond with one adult female – If mother-infant attachment is broken in the first years of life, the child’s emotional and intellectual development would be seriously and permanently harmed. – However, Bowlby did not differentiate between deprivation and privation

12 Deprivation (Disruption) Deprivation occurs when the attachment bond is formed but is broken later. Robertson and Robertson studied John who was looked after in a residential nursery when his mother went into hospital.

13 Privation Privation is when a child does not form any attachment with a significant person. – Prolonged stays in hospital – Neglected/abused children – Institutional care Curtiss (1989) Case study of Genie

14 This study shows that extreme privation has serious and lasting effects, on both emotional development (attachment) and cognitive development (language), but that these effects can be reversed to some extent with high quality care.

15 Koluchova (1976) – ‘Czech twins’ Give handout.

16 Look at the love quiz Take the test

17 Effects of institutionalisation Children who live in large children's homes do not necessarily have the same opportunity to form an attachment to a single primary caregiver as children in normal family homes. Whilst this is not as severe as privation, the lack of a sensitive primary caregiver still has negative effects on social and intellectual development Several studies have looked at the extent of the negative effects of institutionalisation and whether or not the effects can be reversed.

18 Longitudinal Hodges & Tizard (1989) carried out a longitudinal study on 65 children who had been placed in a children's home when they were less than 4 months old. The children's home had a policy forbidding the staff to form attachments with the children, and so the care given was functional and lacked warmth. By the age of 4 years, 24 of the children had been adopted by foster parents, 15 had been returned to their natural families, and the rest remained in the home. The children that had been adopted and 'restored' were assessed at ages 8 and 16, their parents, teachers and peers were interviewed, and the findings were compared with a group of control children who had not been institutionalised.

19 The findings of the study were that the adopted children fared better than the 'restored' children in that they tended to form closer attachments to their adopted parents than the 'restored' children did to their natural parents. However, both groups of children were less successful than the control children at forming peer relationships, and both groups also tended to seek far more adult attention and approval than the control children did. This suggests that relatively privated institutionalised children are able to overcome some of the negative effects of their privation if they are able to form attachments to sensitive and caring adults (the natural parents may not have been as good parents as the foster parents), but overcoming the negative effects does not necessarily extend to peer relationships outside the family home.

20 Romanian Orphans (Rutter et al, 2007) In the 1980s and 1990s many children were discovered in overcrowded Romanian orphanages with very little care provided by the staff running the institutions. The children were fed, clothed and kept warm, but the vast majority had never experienced any form of sensitive care on an emotional level. A number of the orphans were adopted by Western families, and Rutter et al (2007) followed a group who had been adopted by British families, some before the age of 6 months and some older than 6 months. The children were assessed at the ages of 4, 6 and 11 years with the findings that the children adopted younger than 6 months developed normally in line with British adopted children, but those adopted older than 6 months showed disinhibited attachments (forming an attachment with any adult rather than maintaining a strong bond with one primary caregiver) and had problems forming peer relationships. This suggests that the effects of privation can be overcome if an attachment is formed within the first 6 months, but after 6 months the negative effects tend to be more permanent.

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