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Maternal Deprivation Research

Maternal Deprivation Research


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24.6 x 32.5 cm ⏐ 9.7 x 12.8 in (300dpi)

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To test the strength of the attachment to the cloth mother, many tests were devised. In this visual exploration apparatus, the young monkey learns to operate a lever for the sole reward of seeing the cloth mother through the opened window. Maternal deprivation experiments performed by Harry Harlow of the University of Wisconsin in the 1950's involved separating infant monkeys from their mothers and rearing them with surrogate mothers made of wire or cloth. The monkeys were kept in partial or total isolation, in wire cages or in "pits" or "wells of despair." These experiments found that comfort, security and affection are necessary for a monkey's healthy psychosocial development.

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