Child abuse and neglect: Usefulness of the animal data

Dario Maestripieri, Kelly A. Carroll
1998 Psychological bulletin  
This article reviews and critically discusses the relevance of animal data to research on child abuse and neglect. Although parental investment theory can be useful in investigating the adaptiveness, if any, of child abuse and neglect, the evolutionary approach also has some limitations. The most suitable animal models for investigating the psychosocial processes underlying child abuse and neglect are probably found among the nonhuman primates. Whereas the heuristic value of social deprivation
more » ... aradigms may be limited, recent studies suggest that the spontaneous occurrence of infant maltreatment in monkeys may be the closest approximation to child maltreatment provided by nonhuman animals. The investigation of adaptive and maladaptive processes in the parenting behavior of socially living nonhuman primates can inform research on child abuse and neglect and allow investigators to conduct studies that would be difficult or impossible in humans.
doi:10.1037//0033-2909.123.3.211 fatcat:nvucqexsmvhcnhvbwhmgwjcpwq