A Discussion and Critique of RAD

What Is Adaptive and What Is Pathology?
Part of the SpringerBriefs in Psychology book series (BRIEFSPSYCHOL)


Findings of research and the theories for etiology of RAD present an apparent paradox: there is evidence of a genetic footprint, yet by definition a severely adverse environmental force is required at an early, critical stage of childhood. Gross neglect of an infant is inherently pathogenic for our species, in which the period of infant dependence is so prolonged. Neglect should decrease parental fitness, as measured by survival of offspring and this effect is magnified, not reduced, in situations of peril. Basic reflexes of our species (as in most mammals) serve to detect danger and to promote proximity of parent and infant, so that at speed, action comes first, reflection later. Powerful evolutionary pressure applies against abandonment because, compared to most species, the human infant has little chance for survival, without direct and close protection.


Anorexia Nervosa Parental Investment Secure Attachment Insecure Attachment Reproductive Fitness 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Carilion ClinicRoanokeUSA

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