Faculty Publications

Title

Fathers' and mothers' responses to infant smiles and cries

Document Type

Article

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Infant Behavior and Development

Volume

1

Issue

1

First Page

187

Last Page

198

Abstract

Forty-eight mother-father pairs watched a 6-minute videotape presentation of an infant during which time their skin conductance and blood pressure (systolic and diastolic) were monitored. Mood scales were also administered. Half of the subjects saw a crying baby, while the other half viewed a smiling infant. The baby was labeled as "normal," "difficult," or "premature," to equal proportions of the sample. All parents completed standard questionnaires concerning their own child. The smiling infant triggered positive emotions and negligible changes in autonomic arousal, whereas a crying infant was perceived as aversive and elicited diastolic blood-pressure and skin-conductance increases. Skin-conductance increases were especially apparent when the infant was described as "premature." Mothers and fathers did not differ either in their responses to the stimulus baby or in their perception of their own child. © 1978 Ablex Publishing Corporation.

Original Publication Date

1-1-1978

DOI of published version

10.1016/S0163-6383(78)80029-0

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