The Role of Mental Representations in Predicting Mother-Infant Interaction
Research has revealed that as early as the neonatal period infants possess innate capacities such as categorization and amodal perception that help them formulate representations of the "self and "other." This paper posits that in order to formulate these representations, the infant also requires exposure to a motivational environment that provides insight into the relationships between people. "Previewing," a process deriving from the interaction between caregiver and infant, contributes to our understanding of how the caregiver's predictions are transferred to the infant, fostering the infant's achievement of a coherent sense of self and an adaptive social interaction with the caregiver.
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Paul V. Trad, M.D.
Paul V. Trad, M.D., is Director of the Child and Adolescent Outpatient Department, Cornell University Medical Center, Westchester Division, 21 Bloomingdale Road, White Plains, New York 10605.