Learning Theory Of Attachment And The Other Being Bowlby's Evolution Theory

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Early social development is the study of the development of persons from infancy to adulthood. Research is conducted into how childhood experiences affect people’s development in later life. Attachment theories are studied and the effect of no attachment or disrupted attachment is studied and aimed to be resolved. John Bowlby defined attachment as the emotional and physical connection that makes two people stay close to one another. It is between children and their primary caregivers (Psychologistworld.com, 2016). This essay will discuss and evaluate two theories of attachment: one being Dollard and Miller’s learning theory of attachment and the other being Bowlby’s evolution theory. Dollard and Miller’s attachment theory argues that nurture is more influential than nature in terms of attachments, taking the view that attachment is a set of learned behaviours resulting from an individual’s surroundings. In contrast, Bowlby’s theory of attachment insists nature is more dominant, defining nature as innate or instinctive characteristics everyone has. To further discuss Bowlby’s theory, this essay will also utilize the Genie case study and how it shall be used to discuss the social and emotional effects of attachment. The learning theory put forward by Dollard and Miller (1950) attempts to explain why attachments are formed in terms of nurture. They claim that attachment involves a set of learned behaviours through classical and operate conditioning. Classical conditioning
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