Introduction: Issues in Affect Development

  • Michael Lewis
  • Leonard A. Rosenblum
Part of the Genesis of Behavior book series (GOBE, volume 1)


How are we to describe or understand this series of events? We could talk about the child’s growing knowledge about spatial representations, that is, his ability to place blocks in some spatial arrangement. In such a discussion, we could focus our attention on cognitive development. Likewise, we could discuss the development of motor dexterity and physical skills, looking at hand movements: the reaching, placing, building, and scattering of the blocks. Our attention then would be upon physical development. Another perspective is the social exchange and interaction between child and caregiver. Much study has recently been given to both the empirical and the theoretical analysis of dyadic interactions, social exchange, and communication, and we could characterize this set of events in terms of these dimensions. Sociolinguistic development would be still another view, the caregiver giving verbal comment and supplying a lexicon for the motor activity of her child. A final perspective, the one that we wish to pursue, is the affective dimension. In this framework, our interest is drawn to the behaviors of “rapt attention”; laughter at success and sadness and anger at failure; verbal comments such as feeling good, bad, or frustrated; and the interface between action, such as in building a tower, and the internal states underlying or as a consequence of that action.


Affective State Social Exchange Affective Response Biological Model Affective Experience 
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.


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  1. Lewis, M., & Rosenblum. L. A. (Eds.) The origins of fear: The origins of behavior (Vol. 2). New York: Wiley, 1974.Google Scholar

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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael Lewis
  • Leonard A. Rosenblum

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