Task-related expressions of pride and shame: Links to attachment security and language development
Lafontant, Margareth M.
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This study was designed to explore relations among children's attachment representations, task-related expressions of pride and shame (TEPS), and the potential influence of gender on these associations. Links between language development and attachment representations, as well as between language development and TEPS were also investigated.;Thirty-four typically developing 3-year-olds were assessed with the Attachment Story Completion Task. Children's tendencies to demonstrate TEPS were measured via the use of a competitive ring stacking procedure. The Test for Early Language Development, 3rd Edition was administered to assess children's language abilities.;The attachment security variable was positively associated with the following pride-related behaviors: confidence children demonstrated in their predictions for success and in their positive and proactive reactions to failure, but not to the actual advent of success itself. The same results were obtained for the deactivation (avoidant) variable, but in the negative direction. Shame was observed very infrequently and thereby eliminated as a study variable. Regression analyses revealed that attachment security was also predictive of children's overall tendencies to express pride-related behaviors.;There was limited support for the claim that gender influences the relationship between attachment and TEPS, due to the low inter-rater reliability for the insecure attachment variable differentiating boys and girls (hyperactivation). Pride expressed upon winning was positively correlated to language scores; supporting the hypothesis linking language development to TEPS. Last, there was little evidence confirming links between attachment and language development.;Overall, findings showed that the association between children's tendency to express pride after winning was chiefly related to their cognitive awareness of such. However, children's tendencies to be confident in their prospects for winning, to persist and show pride in their products after failure, were found to be related to the socio-emotional variables of interest in this study. Discussions highlighted and offered various explanations for the inconclusive results related to the influence of gender and other study limitations. Suggestions for future research were also detailed, especially in light of the heterogeneous nature of the sample and possible cultural differences that may have influenced study results.