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Title: The effect of maternal mood on mother-infant emotional synchrony and infant affective social referencing: a preliminary study in different cultural settings
Authors: Rozhko, Maria
Keywords: Social sciences::Psychology
Issue Date: 2022
Publisher: Nanyang Technological University
Source: Rozhko, M. (2022). The effect of maternal mood on mother-infant emotional synchrony and infant affective social referencing: a preliminary study in different cultural settings. Master's thesis, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
Abstract: Affective social referencing is an important early form of social appraisal that is conditioned on the repertoire of socioemotional responses displayed by the “model”, typically a parental caregiver. Infants are adept at synchronising their own emotional and neural states with that of adult members of their community. Emotion synchrony allows a young child to simulate and learn vicariously about culturally appropriate emotional responses to unfamiliar objects and events in the environment, providing the basis for her own actions and interaction. However, the effect of social and cultural factors on mother-infant emotional synchrony and affective referencing in the first year of life are poorly understood. Cultures differ in their emotional expressivity, predicting that levels of emotional synchrony between adult “models” and infant learners may also differ across cultures, yielding differential patterns of infant affective referencing and social learning in their young. Yet few studies have systematically assessed these cross-cultural differences in emotional synchrony and affective learning. Here, we compare maternal expressivity, parent-infant emotional synchrony and affective referencing in dyads from the UK and Singapore. An infant’s early social environment has been shown to play a substantial role in shaping individual developmental trajectories. Moreover, long-term consequences of a compromised mother-infant relationship have been shown to extend into adolescence and adulthood. However, the underlying mechanisms of this effect are poorly understood. Here we assess the impact of maternal depressive symptoms and negative affect sensitivity on the generation of mother-infant emotional synchrony and on infant performance in an affective referencing task. Moreover, we examine the relationships between these factors in two different cultures: the UK and Singapore.
DOI: 10.32657/10356/166567
Schools: School of Social Sciences 
Rights: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC 4.0).
Fulltext Permission: open
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
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