ERIC Number: ED254315
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Conflicts and Conundrums in Child Development.
Shantz, Carolyn Uhlinger
Social and cognitive theories indicate that conflict plays an important role in an individual's psychological development. Research findings bearing on this conundrum provide initial hints about what social conflict in children is like and how it relates to characteristics of the child, but the short and long term positive and negative effects of social conflict on development remain unknown. A second conundrum concerns the fact that, while conflict is a dyadic relationship, it may not be studied as such. Studying children's natural social behavior in the past decade has shown how difficult it is to think "dyadically." To understand conflict, it could be very important to focus on the identity of the dyad. A third conundrum concerns whether or not the study of conflict can reveal the structure of the social environment to which the child adapts and can illuminate aspects of that environment as it adapts to the child. Most major theories of development do not address systematically the interaction of the developing child and the social environment. Over time and over many conflicts, messages are provided from the group to the child and from the child to the group concerning circumstances important enough to generate conflict. Analysis of conflict at the group level may reveal some major structures of information in the child's social environment. (RH)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Developmental Theory; Dyadic Interaction Analysis
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association (92nd, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, August 24-28, 1984).