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Infants' Responses to Strangers: Midget, Adult, and Child

Jeanne Brooks and Michael Lewis
Child Development
Vol. 47, No. 2 (Jun., 1976), pp. 323-332
Published by: Wiley on behalf of the Society for Research in Child Development
DOI: 10.2307/1128785
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1128785
Page Count: 10
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Infants' Responses to Strangers: Midget, Adult, and Child
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Abstract

Infants respond differentially, and at times with fearlike behavior, to unfamiliar persons. This study was designed to see how infants discriminate among strangers. Since it has been shown that infants respond differently to children and adults, the physical characteristics of persons used to make such differentiations were of interest. Facial configuration and height were systematically varied as 4 different strangers-a male and female child, a female adult, and a small female adult the same height as the children (midget)-each approached 40 different infants. The infants responded as if there were 3 classes of persons-adult, child, and small adult, suggesting that both size and facial configuration cues were used. Infants as young as 7 months of age reacted to the size-facial configuration discrepancy of the small-adult condition.

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