By Arnold P. Goldstein
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P. 200] Thus, it is argued, the infant responds to needs in the only ways it can and these ways involve rather consistently reinforced behaviors which we label protoaggressive because they are precursers of genuinely aggressive behavior. What happens to these protoaggressive behaviors? Whenever a caretaker responds to these need-signalling behaviors of an infant, not only are the needs attended to (which has an immediate impact), the behaviors are reinforced (which has a long-range impact). During all those months before the baby matures sufficiently to acquire linguistic competence, it thus receives considerable reinforcement for its primitive, protoaggressive behaviors.
Not only that, in the intervals of delay between the first distress call and the response of the caretaker, the infant's responses are likely to increase in intensity, so that it is often a very strong response that receives the reward, [pp. 201-202] This argument proceeds to deal with the slow, erratic transformation of protoaggression to aggression : A Research Strategy 29 As socialization proceeds, caretakers become increasingly demanding; [they] elicit and reward more sophisticated responses and endeavor not to reward the more primitive ones.
Nielsen, C. C. Parental acceptance and rejection: A review and annotated bibliography of research and theory. New Haven: HRAFLEX Book No. W6-006, 1978. 2 Vols. Rohner, R. , & Rohner, E. C. Coping with perceived parental rejection: Correlates of social cognition. In L. H. Eckensburger, Y. H. Poortinga, and W. J. ), Cross-cultural contributions to psychology. Amsterdam: Swets and Zietlanger, 1979. Ross, M. H. Cross-cultural sources of internal conflict and external warfare. , August 1980. Russell, E.