Date of Award
Major Research Paper
Master of Arts (MA)
Early Childhood Studies
This study examined ethno-cultural influences on attachment representations by using a Grounded Theory analysis of the Working Model of the Child Interview (WMCI). Six participant interviews were transcribed and coded. Four main themes related to caregivers and their children emerged from this qualitative analysis: emotion regulation, stress response, caregiver roles and personality/relationship descriptors. Results indicated that there are both universal and ethno-cultural variations related to different components of attachment representations. Attachment story telling, caregiver language and parenting styles reflected variations in cultural values and beliefs of independent and interdependent cultures. Emotion regulation, stress response and caregiver roles were more reflective of universal attachment. Recommendations for further inquiry into the ethno-cultural influences on attachment representations are discussed. Clinical implications suggest that ethno-cultural context must be acknowledged when interpreting WMCI interviews with non-dominant interviewee backgrounds. As well, evidence is provided to support developing a culturally sensitive system for interpreting WMCI interviews.
Garfinkel, Stephen, "Working model of the child interview : a cross-cultural examination of attachment representations" (2009). Theses and dissertations. Paper 478.