Infant Crying pp 307-323 | Cite as

The Infant Cry of Primates

An Evolutionary Perspective
  • John D. Newman


The evolution of the infant cry is essentially a reflection of the evolution of mammals. The origin of suckling behavior and the delivery of milk from the mother gave rise to the intimacy of prolonged contact, a trait that is almost as diagnostic for mammals as the nursing behavior from which it originates. Along with this intimacy came increased possibilities for individual recognition between mother and infant, resulting in the establishment of affiliative bonds that, at least in many primates, extend well beyond the period of infantile dependency into adulthood.


Squirrel Monkey Human Infant Spider Monkey Howler Monkey Vocal Behavior 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Andrew, R. J. The origin and evolution of the calls and facial expressions of the primates. Behaviour, 1963, 20, 1 – 109.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Baldwin, J. D., & Baldwin, J. I. Vocalizations of howler monkeys (Alouatta palliata) in southwestern Panama. Folia Primatologica, 1976, 26, 81 – 108.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bell, S. M., & Ainsworth, M. D. Infant crying and maternal responsiveness. Child Development, 1972, 43, 1171 – 1190.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bowlby, J. The nature of the child’s tie to his mother. International Journal of Pediatrics, 1958, 39, 350 – 373.Google Scholar
  5. Chevalier-Skolnikoff, S. The ontogeny of communication in the stumptail macaque (Macaca arctoides). Contributions to Primatology, 1974, 2, 1 – 174.Google Scholar
  6. Eisenberg, J. R. Communication mechanisms and social integration in the Black Spider Monkey, Ateles fusciceps robustus, and related species. Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology, 1976, 213, 1 – 108.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Epple, G. Comparative studies on vocalization in marmoset monkeys (Hapalidae). Folia Primatologica, 1968, 8, 1 – 40.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Formby, D. Maternal recognition of infant’s cry. Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology, 1967, 9, 293 – 298.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Fossey, D. Vocalizations of the Mountain Gorilla (Gorilla gorilla beringei). Animal Behaviour, 1972, 20, 36 – 53.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Fossey, D. Development of the Mountain Gorilla (Gorilla gorilla beringei): The first thirty-six months. In D. A. Hamburg & E. R. McCown (Eds.), The great apes. Menlo Park: Benjamin/Cummins, 1979.Google Scholar
  11. Gautier, J.-P., & Gautier, A. Communication in Old World monkeys. In T. A. Sebeok (Eds.), How animals communicate. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1977.Google Scholar
  12. Green, S. Variation of vocal pattern with social situation in the Japanese monkey (Macaca fuscata): A field study. In L. A. Rosenblum (Ed.), Primate behavior: Developments in field and laboratory research(Vol. 4 ). New York: Academic Press, 1975.Google Scholar
  13. Green, S. Sex differences and age gradations in vocalizations of Japanese and Lion-tailed monkeys. American Zoologist, 1981, 21, 165 – 184.Google Scholar
  14. Grimm, R. J. Catalogue of sounds of the Pigtailed Macaque (Macaca nemistrina). Journal of Zoology, London, 1967, 152, 361 – 373.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Hodun, A., Snowdon, C. T., & Soini, P. Subspecific variation in the long calls of the tamarin, Saguinus fuscicollis. Zeitschrift für Tierpsychologie, 1981, 57, 97 – 110.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Lawick-Goodall, J. van. A preliminary report on expressive movements and communication in the Gombe Stream chimpanzees. In P. C. Jay (Ed.), Primates: Studies in adaptation and variability. New York: Holt, Rinehart & Winston, 1968.Google Scholar
  17. Lawick-Goodall, J. van. Mother-offspring relationships in free-ranging chimpanzees. In D. Morris (Ed.), Primate ethology. Garden City: Doubleday, 1969.Google Scholar
  18. Lieblich, A. K., Symmes, D., Newman, J. D., & Shapiro, M. Development of the isolation peep in laboratory bred squirrel monkeys. Animal Behaviour, 1980, 28, 1 – 9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Lillehei, R. A., & Snowdon, C. T. Individual and situational differences in the vocalizations of young Stumptail Macaques (Macaca arctoides). Behaviour, 1978, 65, 270 – 281.Google Scholar
  20. MacLean, P. D. Mirror display in the squirrel monkey, Saimiri sciureus. Science, 1964, 146, 950 – 952.Google Scholar
  21. Maskarinec, A. S., Cairns, G. F., Butterfield, E. C., & Weamer, D. K. Longitudinal observations of individual infant’s vocalizations. Journal of Speech and Hearing Disorders, 1981, 46, 267 – 273.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  22. Moynihan, M. Some behavior patterns of platyrrhine monkeys. II. Saguinus geoffroyiand some other tamarins. Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology, 1970, 28, 1 – 77.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Newman, J. D., & MacLean, P. D. Effects of tegmental lesions on the isolation call of squirrel monkeys. Brain Research, 1982, 232, 317 – 329.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Newman, J. D., & Symmes, D. Vocal pathology in socially deprived monkeys. Developmental Psychobiology, 1974, 7, 351 – 358.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Newman, J. D., & Symmes, D. Inheritance and experience in the acquisition of primate acoustic behavior. In C. T. Snowdon, C. H. Brown, & M. R. Petersen (Eds.), Primate communication. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1982.Google Scholar
  26. Oppenheimer, J. R. Communication in New World monkeys. In T. A. Sebeok (Ed.), How animals communicate. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1977.Google Scholar
  27. Ostwald, P. The sounds of infancy. Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology, 1972, 14, 350 – 361.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Ostwald, P. F., Phibbs, R., & Fox, S. Diagnostic use of infant cry. Biologia Neonatorum, 1968, 13, 68 – 83.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Ploog, D., Hopf, S., & Winter, P. Ontogenese des Verhaltens von Totenkopf-Affen (Saimiri sciureus). Psychologische Forschung, 1967, 31, 1 – 41.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Pola, Y. V., & Snowdon, C. T. The vocalizations of pygmy marmosets (Cebuella pygmaea). Animal Behaviour, 1975, 23, 826 – 842.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Pook, A. G. A comparative study of the use of contact calls in Saguinus fuscicollisand Callithrix jacchus. In D. G. Kleiman (Ed.), The biology and conservation of the Callitrichidae. Washington, D. C.: Smithsonian Institution, 1977.Google Scholar
  32. Prechtl, H. F. R., Theorell, K., Gramsbergen, A., & Lind, J. A statistical analysis of cry patterns in normal and abnormal newborn infants. Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology, 1969, 11, 142 – 152.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Prescott, R. Infant cry sound developmental features. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 1975, 57, 1186 – 1191.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Robinson, J. G. An analysis of the organization of vocal communication in the titi monkey (Callicebus moloch). Zeitschrift für Tierpsychologie, 1979, 49, 381 – 405.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Rowell, T. E., & Hinde, R. A. Vocal communication by the rhesus monkey (Macaca mulatta). Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London, 1962, 138, 279 – 294.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Simons, R. C., & Bielert, C. F. An experimental study of vocal communication between mother and infant monkeys (Macaca nemestrina). American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 1973, 28, 455 – 462.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Stark, R. E. Stages of speech development in the first year of life. In G. H. Yeni-Komshian, J. F. Kavanagh, & C. A. Ferguson (Eds.), Child phonology(Vol. 1 ). New York: Aca¬demic Press, 1980.Google Scholar
  38. Stark, R. E., & Nathanson, S. N. Spontaneous cry in the newborn infant: Sounds and facial gestures. In J. F. Bosma (Ed.), Development in the fetus and infant, Fourth Symposium on Oral Sensation and Perception. Bethesda, Md.: U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare, 1973.Google Scholar
  39. Struhsaker, T. T. Auditory communication among vervet monkeys. (Cercopithecus aethiops). In S. A. Altman (Ed.), Social communication among primates. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1967.Google Scholar
  40. Symmes, D., Newman, J. D., Talmage-Riggs, G., & Lieblich, A. K. Individuality and stability of isolation peeps in squirrel monkeys. Animal Behaviour, 1979, 27, 1142 – 1152.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Truby, H. M., & Lind, J. Cry sounds of the newborn infant. In J. Lind (Ed.), Newborn infant cry. Acta Paediatrica Scandinavica, 1965, 163 (Suppl.).Google Scholar
  42. Wasz-Höckert, O., Lind, J., Vuorenkoski, V., Partanen, T., & Valanne, E. The infant cry: A spectrographic and auditory analysis. Clinics in Developmental Medicine29. Philadelphia: Lippincott, 1968.Google Scholar
  43. Winter, P. Social communication in the squirrel monkey. In L. A. Rosenblum & R. W. Cooper (Eds.), The squirrel monkey. New York: Academic Press, 1968.Google Scholar
  44. Winter, P., Ploog, D., & Latta, J. Vocal repertoire of the squirrel monkey (Saimiri sciureus), Its analysis and significance. Experimental Brain Research, 1966, 1, 359 – 384.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Winter, P., Handley, P., Ploog, D., & Schott, D. Ontogeny of squirrel monkey calls under normal conditions and under acoustic isolation. Behaviour, 1973, 47, 230 – 239.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Wolff, P. The natural history of crying and other vocalizations in early infancy. In B. M. Foss (Ed.), Determinants of infant behaviour(Vol. 4 ). London: Methuen, 1969.Google Scholar
  47. Young, G., & Gouin DeCarie, T. An ethology-based catalogue of facial/vocal behaviour in infancy. Animal Behaviour, 1977, 25, 95 – 107.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • John D. Newman
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Comparative Ethology, National Institute of Child Health and Human DevelopmentNational Institutes of HealthBethesdaUSA

Personalised recommendations