OF mental health care and mentally ill
john bowlby attachment theory
john bowlby attachment theory John Bowlby, a British psychoanalyst, is seen as the ‘father’ of attachment theory.
He described the development of an attachment behavioural system that has the
aim of maintaining the infant’s sense of security and safety. In his initial
formulation of attachment theory, Bowlby argued that the innate capacity of
infants to form relationships has clear evolutionary or species-survival value.
Unlike some other animals, human infants are born in a relative state of
prematurity and are dependent on an older species member for survival. Infants
cannot obtain food, or maintain body temperature, for example, and need a carer to regulate basic and essential physiological processes. The infant begins to form
attachment relationships from birth, and Bowlby described attachment as a
programmed or ‘hard-wired’ innate capacity of the infant.
Methods for assessing the security of attachment relationships in infants and
children and internal working models of relationships in adults, as well as the
clinical implications and applications of attachment theory are discussed in detail in some books
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