ERIC Number: ED292554
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1987-Jul
Reference Count: 0
An Interactive Approach to the Study of Infant Temperament, Maternal Caregiving, and Behavioral Outcome.
Crockenberg, Susan B.
This paper reviews research on the relationship between infant temperament and maternal caregiving, and discusses conflicting findings. After emphasizing the central importance of independent measures in tests of interactions between temperament and caregiving, the paper reports two studies designed to clarify the relationship. In Study One, 48 mothers and infants participated in an investigation of the extent to which maternal sensitivity at the end of the infant's first year could be predicted from prenatal maternal attitudes, infant irritability during the neonatal period, or an interaction between both. Findings were consistent with the view that the impact of infant temperament on caregiving depends on caregiver characteristics, such as developmental history, personality, experience, and stress. An association between infant irritability and maternal insensitivity appeared to evolve over time. In Study Two, conducted from infants' 3rd to 24th month, 40 mothers and their infants participated in an investigation of the antecedents of angry and punitive maternal behavior and the predictors of child anger, noncompliance, low confidence, and social withdrawal. Findings suggested that the origins of anger, noncompliance, and low confidence in children cannot be attributed solely to patterns of maternal care. Concluding discussion explores implications of the findings for studies of attachment and recommends directions for future research. (RH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Biennial Meeting of the International Society for the Study of Behavioral Development (9th, Tokyo, Japan, July 12-16, 1987).