1 Bowlby thinks that a strong attachment to a mother
figure is essential for a child's health. If attachments to a
mother figure are broken or absent then the effects
could be serious. However, this can change if the
mother figure returns or there is a mother substitute.
1.1 Bowlby selected 44 thieves and compared them to 44 boys not
convicted. He then classed 14 of the thieves as "affectionless
psychopaths" , 12 of the 14 affectionless psychopaths had
been separated from their mother.
1.1.1 His sample wasn't reprensative and there were only boys so it was
gender biased. His data was also retrospective so may be inaccurate.
Bowlby may be biased as he was in regular contact with is participants.
You cannot assume cause and effect.
2 Rutter suggested that a child separated due to a divorce, or due to
an addiction such as alcohol had a worse impact on the child. He
did an experiment with 2000 boys and looked at the relationship
between separation and delinquency. If separation was due to
psychological disorders of the parent, the boys were four times
more likely to become delinquent. The stress before the separation
is the likely factor.
2.1 The data was collected retrospectively so may
not be accurate. Cause and effect cannot be
estabalished. It is gender biased.
3 Goldfarb looked at the effects of being raised in an institution. The first group
had been fostered after being separated from their mother immediately. The
second group had been in the institution for six months to 3.5 years. The second
group had a lower IQ and were less able to form relationships and less likely to
3.1 There may have been individual differences in the two groups, for example IQ
and attractiveness. Goldfarb also argued that problems with the second group
were from a failure to attach as an infant, but it is thought it could be down to
the conditions that they were raised in the institution, the infants were given
little contact apart from feeding and changing for the first 9 months in their life.
4 Spitz and Wolf studied 100 children who had been
depressed after hospitalisation. A full recovery was
usually made if they had stayed in hospital for less than
4.1 However this experiment was carried out in the 1940's
where hospital care was a lot different.
5 Spitz studied in poor orphanages in South America and found that many
of the children showed little affection. The children in the orphanage
were shown little attention so no attachment was formed.
6 Dougal found that children who had spent more than a
week in hopsital before the age of 4 were more likely to
have behaviour problems as a teenager and to be poor
7 Rutter suggested that Bowlby couldn't define the
difference between privation and deprivation.