To begin to understand the attachment theory one must first understand and have a clear definition of what attachment is. From my point of view attachment is a lasting, secure and positive bond between a child and a caregiver, a reciprocal relationship.
“Attachment, as a behavioural system introduced by Bowlby (1969, 1973, 1979, 1980), is thus a set of behaviours (crying, smiling, clinging, moving, looking, etc) that function together to achieve proximity to the primary caregiver. The biological purpose of such an innate behavioural system is to keep the infant close to the mother and protect it during its early and most vulnerable years”(http://psychology.about.com) 1
A baby who has formed an attachment responds well with the adult she has bonded with, this response makes the adult continue providing the care, nourishment, nurturing and stimulation the child needs to ensure a healthy well-rounded development. As the baby grows mechanisms are developed to allow this bonding to continue, traditionally a baby would have been carried around by the mother, usually in a papoose, till old enough to crawl around. Then when the baby could crawl it could follow its mother, reach objects on its own and explore, a
He received and accepted a request of the WHO to write a report on the fate of homeless children in post-war Europe. They cowered in fear and became distressed. CriticismsHarlow"tms monkeys were suffering from maternal privation, they were denied completely any interaction from a parent, in fact they had no attachment to a parent whatsoever, having been removed within hours of birth, yet the findings were compared and likened to those of children who were suffering from maternal deprivation, temporary loss of their parent, they had already formed an attachment and this was then broken. They had been deprived of stimulation, education and integration which happens normally in life, this further compounded the Attachment Theory, was seen as direct proof by all involved that babies needed more than just food from their mothers. These days we recognise that the attachment can be formed on many levels and with many different care givers, the primary or main care giver is not necessarily the mother and in this busy day and age more and more children are in nurseries, creches and with childminders and the level and standard of care should be as such that the child is losing nothing vital with this arrangement. The monkeys had formed an attachment to the cloth "mother" they would sleep with it and cling to it just as they would with their own mothers. (Forty-Four Juvenile Thieves, their characters and home lives (published in 1944) 4 from the information gleaned he deduced that there was a link to maternal deprivation and delinquent behaviour, what he claimed as affectionless psychopathy. It was also noted that when the monkeys were reintroduced to the pack they did not, or could not interact with the others, they had no social skills, new nothing about the order of the pack and had none of the skills the other monkeys had. Earlier theories and theorists insisted that separation was not an issue and that the bond was either through conditioning i.