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Culture and Emotional Development • Cultural differences in parenting practices and values contribute to differences in emotional expression. (e.g. empathy)

Culture and Emotional Development Cultural differences in parenting practices and values contribute to differences in emotional expression. (e.g. empathy)

Dec 30, 2015



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  • Culture and Emotional DevelopmentCultural differences in parenting practices and values contribute to differences in emotional expression. (e.g. empathy)

  • Culture and Emotional DevelopmentParents ideas about the usefulness of particular emotions vary within subcultures of the major culture (e.g. Mothers living in a dangerous neighborhoods more tolerant of aggression, especially in girls)

  • How Parents Socialize Their ChildrenParents socialize their childrens emotional development through:Their expression of emotion with their children and other people (e.g. Expression of positive related to social competence, low aggression, high self-esteem; Negative expressions related behavioral problems and social and learning difficulties). Correlational!!!Their reactions to their childrens expression of emotionTheir discussions with their children about emotion and the regulation of emotion

  • Depression by Gender and Age

  • Emotional Expression in AdolescenceIs the gender difference genuine?Is it a difference in level of emotionality or expression?What factors might be underlying this gender difference?

  • Attachment

  • Themes: Nature and Nurture The Sociocultural Context Individual Differences

  • Historical Underpinnings1930s and 1940s children raised in orphanages, or refugee camps during WWII or other institutions were, despite have their physical needs metSeemed to have no concern for othersWithdrawn, isolatedOthers overactive and abusivePhysically and mentally retardedSick, depressed, and more likely to die (37%) than at institutions with daily contact with mothers (0%)

  • Wire Mothers?

  • Wire Mother Resultsthe monkeys spent significantly more time with the cloth mother (15 hours) than the wire mesh mother (2 hours), regardless of who provided the milk

    goes against behaviorism and psychoanalytic theories which treated food as the only reinforcement important to children.

    emphasized the need to have emotional and psychological needs met in addition to physical needs

  • Harlows Wire Mother Experiment Video

  • Harlows Wire Mother Experiment Video

  • Historical Underpinnings...Harlows MonkeysRaised infant monkeys in isolation from birthWhen placed with other monkeys at 6 months they had severe disturbances(biting and rocking themselves, avoiding other monkeys, unable to communicate or learn from others, females had no interest in sex, if impregnated they did not know what to do with their babies (ignore, reject, or kill them)Weakness = total social isolation not just caregiver bond butStrongly supports the view that normal development and social emotional competence is rooted in early social interactions

  • Historical Underpinnings contd...Infants who had been allowed to develop a bond with mothers and then were separated showed signs of intense grief and depressionAdoption--the earlier the betterLed researchers to understand the importance of having their psychological /emotional needs met--importance of attachment

  • What is Attachment?an emotional bond with a person that is enduring over time and in different contexts

    But are all attachments with caregivers the same? Are there different attachment patterns that lead to different outcomes in the childs behavior?

  • individual differences in attachmentAinsworth, et al. hypothesized that differences in the quality of attachment relationships could be detected by the interaction between mother and infant, the infants reactions to separations and reunions with mother, and reactions to strangers

    The Strange Situation was designed to assess the degree of security between infant and caregiver

  • Strange SituationVideo!

  • Patterns of AttachmentSecure (about 65%)Infants actively seek proximity to caregivers upon reunionCommunicate their feelings of stress and distress openly and then readily return to playInsecure-Avoidant (about 20%) (Group A)Infants who do not seem distressed during separation and ignore caregiver upon return. (more angry and negative than other 2 groups)Insecure-Ambivalent (about 15%) (Group C)Infants who become extremely distressed when the caregiver departs but are ambivalent or resistent on her return. They run to her but then arch away or push her.Disorganized/Disoriented (~5% of insecurely attached)Changeable, confused behavior, exhibit fear toward mom but still approach

  • Harlows Wire Mother : Secure Base Video

  • what determines attachment style?the care-giving hypotheses

    Secure parentingSensitivity (responding promptly, consistently, and appropriately)Positive attitutude, affectionateSupport/attentivenessStimulation

    Avoidant parentingLess of secure attributesAversion to bodily contactRejecting More angry and yet less emotional expression overall

    Ambivalent parentingLess of secure attributesanxiousMore evidence of difficult temperament

  • Attachment and TemperamentBecause of the correlational nature of the studies on parenting style and attachment cant determine direction or if third variable

    E.g. childs temperament could lead to changes in parenting style

    Or, the moms and infants behavior could correlate due to shared genes

  • Culture, Experience, and Attachment

    Northern Germany: Parents encourage children to be independent and discourage close clingy behavior. More German babies show avoidant attachment than US babies.Intense separation anxiety (characteristic of ambivalent style) more common in Japan where caregivers rarely leave their children with substitute caregivers.Thus, childs early experiences (amount of contact with strangers, day care etc) can explain some of the differences on the Strange Situation

  • Long Term Effects?Securely Attachedage 2-6. Better problem solvers (persistent and enthusiastic), more complex creative play, more positive emotions, cooperative and sympathetic, more attractive playmates.age 11-15. Better social skills, better peer relations more likely to have more close friends

    Insecureage 2-3. Socially and emotionally withdrawn, hesitant to initiate play behaviors with peers, less curious, less interested in learning.age 11-15. Poor peer relations, fewer close friendships, more likely to have psychopathological symptoms. Avoidant = more likely to display deviant behaviors (disruption/disobedience)Ambivalent = easily frustrated, less competent

  • Long Term Effects?

    Is this because of the importance of the very first interactions between caregiver and infant? Or because good parents tend to stay good parents and bad, bad?Regardless of the cause intervention seems helpful