Emotions in Cocaine-Exposed Infants
Margaret Bendersky University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey Steven M. Alessandri Medical College of Pennsylvania Michael Lewis University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey
Emotions are studied as the infant's primary means of communicating with the outside world. Emotional expressions are seen as influencing and reflecting the quality of the infant's interaction with his or her social environment. Recent theory and research on infant emotion has demonstrated that infant emotional reactivity is an important feature of the infant's temperament and that the display of affect is an important mediator of interpersonal relationships in the first year of life ( Cicchetti, Ganiban, & Barnett, 1991; Lewis & Michalson, 1983; Malatesta, Culver, Tesman, & Shepard, 1989). In regard to the study of infant emotions, this implies examining endogenous infant traits, their emotional expression, and their interaction with socialization experiences to produce particular patterns of emotional behavior.