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Parent–child attachment as a mechanism of intergenerational (dis)advantage

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A growing literature connects childhood socio-emotional skills to adult socio-economic outcomes. But what explains differing levels of socio-emotional skills? Current theories consider parental investment and socialisation, but neglect the emotional and relational aspects of parenting. Attachment theory offers a model of the micro-level mechanisms that connect parenting processes and socio-emotional development intergenerationally. It has, however, tended to de-emphasise macro, contextual socio-economic factors. Through an extensive, integrative review of the empirical literature on the effects and antecedents of parent–child attachment, we argue that attachment is a mechanism through which socio-emotional – and socio-economic – (dis)advantages persist.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Email: [email protected] 2: Email: [email protected] 3: Email: [email protected]

Publication date: July 2018

This article was made available online on October 6, 2017 as a Fast Track article with title: "Parent–child attachment as a mechanism of intergenerational (dis)advantage".

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