The influence of fathers' interactive and child-care characteristics on infants' social behavior is explored in 5 experimental studies of infant-father interaction. Problems of methodology are discussed and father-caregiving patterns are noted. The relationship to the father was seen to be independent of the extent of his involvement in child care, although some minimal level of interaction seemed necessary. Extensive paternal caregiving was related to the preference for the father in the laboratory and shortened durations of separation protest. The final study demonstrated that manipulation of father-infant interaction at home directly influences infant-father interaction in a laboratory setting. Bibliography. (Author abstract modified)
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