The Development of the Person
The Minnesota Study of Risk and Adaptation from Birth to Adulthood
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Copyright Date: 2005
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Copyright Date: 2005
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The definitive work on a groundbreaking study, this essential volume provides a coherent picture of the complexity of development from birth to adulthood. Explicated are both the methodology of the Minnesota study and its far-reaching contributions to understanding how we become who we are. The book marshals a vast body of data on the ways in which individuals' strengths and vulnerabilities are shaped by myriad influences, including early experiences, family and peer relationships throughout childhood and adolescence, variations in child characteristics and abilities, and socioeconomic conditions. Implications for clinical intervention and prevention are also addressed. Rigorously documented and clearly presented, the study's findings elucidate the twists and turns of individual pathways, illustrating as never before the ongoing interplay between developing children and their environments.
“This book summarizes over three decades of research that prospectively followed a group of 180 children born into poverty. The result is a marvelously written account of an impressively in-depth exploration of the experiences and circumstances that build persons over time....For both clinicians and scientists interested in social development, this book is a highly readable, highly useful resource....There are not many 30-year studies out there, but beyond simply being rare, this study is rich in theory and inspiring to anyone who has ever wondered what makes a person who he/she is.”—Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry
“This is a comprehensive, well-conceived and constructed longitudinal developmental study that makes a significant contribution to the understanding of development and its problems. It will be most welcome not only to students of child development, but to all practitioners of psychological disciplines dealing with development and its outcomes.”—Bulletin of the Menninger Clinic
“If you want to be informed on the most up to date, profound thinking about development, this is the one book that should be read. It provides a truly comprehensive view of human development through its presentation of the Minnesota Study, a groundbreaking 30 year longitudinal study of families living in urban poverty....Woven throughout the book is a presentation of the cutting edge theoretical perspective on development....The book is well organized, and flows very nicely....It provides a comprehensive, succinct, and clearly written overview of modern thinking in developmental theory....The detailed description of the Minnesota Study, which makes up the bulk of the volume, is an invaluable guide to the design and implementation of a large scale longitudinal research project....This book would be quite useful as supplementary reading in an advanced undergraduate or graduate-level course on developmental theory, or a more general course on human development. The book would also be suitable reading for anyone with some formal educational background in psychology and/or human development that wanted to become up to date on cutting edge thinking in developmental psychology.”—Journal of Child and Family Studies
“This book is a 'must read' for anybody involved with longitudinal research, developmental psychopathology, or social policy involving children and families. The broad focus on adaptation succeeds in linking social and personality development to domains as diverse as academic achievement, IQ, and psychopathology. The extensive and carefully crafted assessments of individuals from birth through adulthood place the authors in a unique position to test the contribution of early experience to later developmental outcomes. Overall, the authors provide an integrative, challenging, and engaging summary of the diverse pathways taken by children born into low-income families.”—Roger Kobak, PhD, Department of Psychology, University of Delaware
“In this landmark volume, the authors provide a full account of their impressive research on the development of the person from birth to adulthood. The Minnesota Study is one of the classic longitudinal studies in the history of the field of developmental psychology. Moreover, the theoretical approach utilized has been extremely influential in the emergence of the discipline of developmental psychopathology. Developmental and clinical psychologists, developmental psychopathologists, educators, and social policy advocates all will profit from and be interested in this work. Likewise, it is an excellent text for advanced undergraduate and graduate courses in developmental psychology and psychopathology. I recommend this volume with great enthusiasm.”—Dante Cicchetti, PhD, Mt. Hope Family Center, Rochester, New York
“This is the long-awaited, definitive report of a uniquely important longitudinal study of the origins of social and personality development throughout the life course. The Minnesota Study of Parents and Children has been a significant source of new understanding of the importance of early experiences, parent-child relationships, and continuity and change in personality growth, and of the relevance of these issues to psychological strength and vulnerability. This volume draws together decades of research into an integrative, comprehensive report that developmental scientists, students, and practitioners will find valuable, thought provoking, and important.”—Ross A. Thompson, PhD, Department of Psychology, University of California, Davis
“This remarkably lucid and accessible book tells the story of the authors' groundbreaking 30-year longitudinal study of families living in urban poverty. The findings of their research provide the backdrop for an extraordinarily textured, broad, yet coherent explication of the complexities of developmental process. While concerned explicitly with the interface of socioemotional development, attachment, and psychopathology, this enormously ambitious and immensely readable book conveys the essential principles of development in a way that will be fascinating to anyone interested in infants, children, and families.”—Arietta Slade, PhD, Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology, City University of New York
“Four stars for this remarkable book! It offers a detailed picture of a varied set of children as they move from infancy to adulthood, noting how early interactions between parent and child play out in subsequent social relationships. It shows how each developmental phase adds new relational elements, which nevertheless emerge from, and depend on, what came before. It identifies some of the childhood roots of pathology, while also highlighting the kinds of parent-child interactions that underlie a child's growing competence and emotional well-being. Any serious teacher or student of psychosocial development will want to have this book within arm's reach.”—Eleanor E. Maccoby, PhD, Department of Psychology, Stanford University
“This is the book that developmental psychologists and clinicians have been awaiting for more than 25 years—even if they didn't know it. We finally have a systematic prospective study from birth to young adulthood of nearly 200 people, using state-of-the-art measures and including all the probable variables affecting development. At the same time, the authors keep an eye on the clinical implications of this developmental sweep. This book is a monumental achievement. It not only summarizes a decades-long programmatic study, but will also be the starting point for the next generation of developmental research with clinical relevance. Essential reading for all in the field.”—Daniel Stern, MD, Department of Psychology, University of Geneva, Switzerland, and Department of Psychiatry, Weill Medical College of Cornell University
Table of ContentsI. Understanding Development
1. The Challenge
2. A Perspective on Development
4. The Follow-Up Strategy
II. Development and Adaptation
5. Adaptation in Infancy
6. Adaptation in the Toddler Period: Guided Self-Regulation
7. Adaptation in the Preschool Period: The Emergence of the Coherent Personality
8. Adaptation in Middle Childhood: The Era of Competence
9. Adaptation in Adolescence: Autonomy with Connectedness
10. The Transition to Adulthood
III. Development and Psychopathology
11. The Developmental Process
12. Behavioral and Emotional Disturbance
13. Clinical Implications
14. The Tasks Ahead
Appendix A. Longitudinal Study Assessments
Appendix B. Life Stress Scale
Appendix C. 12-Month Interview
Appendix D. Tool Problem-Solving Task Ratings: 24 Months
Appendix E. Teacher Nomination Procedure
Appendix F. Capacity for Vulnerability: Camp Reunion Rating
Appendix G. Selected References by Topic
About the AuthorsL. Alan Sroufe
, PhD, is the William Harris Professor of Child Development at the University of Minnesota, where he is also Adjunct Professor of Psychiatry. He is a member of the Society for Research in Child Development and is on the editorial boards of three professional journals. An internationally recognized expert on early attachment relationships, emotional development, and developmental psychopathology, Dr. Sroufe has published six books and more than 100 articles.
, PhD, is the Irving B. Harris Professor of Child Development at the University of Minnesota and Codirector of the Irving B. Harris Training Center for Infant and Toddler Development. He is on the board of directors of a number of national organizations, including Prevent Child Abuse America. Dr. Egeland is widely published in the areas of child maltreatment, developmental psychopathology, and prevention programs for high-risk families.
Elizabeth A. Carlson
, PhD, is a Research Associate and Instructor in the Institute of Child Development at the University of Minnesota. She has published numerous papers on early experience and emotional and behavioral disturbance, the internalization of experience, and the mutual influence of representation and experience. Dr. Carlson is internationally recognized as a trainer in infant attachment assessment.
W. Andrew Collins
, PhD, is Morse-Alumni Distinguished Teaching Professor of Child Development and Psychology at the University of Minnesota. He has written widely on mass media influence, parent-adolescent and peer relationships during adolescence, and romantic relationships in early adulthood. Dr. Collins currently serves as Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board for the NICHD Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development.