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The Nature and Nurture of LoveFrom Imprinting to Attachment in Cold War America$
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Marga Vicedo

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780226020556

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226020693.001.0001

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Bowlby’s Ethological Theory of Attachment Behavior

Bowlby’s Ethological Theory of Attachment Behavior

The Nature and Nurture of Love for the Mother

(p.69) Chapter Three Bowlby’s Ethological Theory of Attachment Behavior
The Nature and Nurture of Love

Marga Vicedo

University of Chicago Press

This chapter examines the development of John Bowlby's views and their scientific and social reception in the United States during the 1950s. Bowlby's assertion that mother love is a biological need for children influenced discussions about whether mothers should work outside the home and supported a gendered division of parental care. It is proposed that Bowlby's influence was heightened because the social interest in his views about the effects of maternal deprivation came at a crucial juncture in debates about women's role in modern society, and also because of the emotional effect his position had on mothers.

Keywords:   John Bowlby, mother love, parental care, maternal deprivation, women, ethological theory, attachment behavior

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