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Attachment and Life History Theory: A Rejoinder


  • I am grateful for the thoughtful comments of my laboratory group—Miranda Goodman, Rachel Jochem, Emily Newton, Elita Virmani, Sara Waters, and Abby Winer—in our discussion of the issues raised in the target article and this commentary.

concerning this article should be addressed to Ross A. Thompson, University of California, Davis, CA 95616; e-mail:


Abstract—M. Del Giudice and J. Belsky (this issue) derive several provocative hypotheses from the application of life history theory to attachment, especially concerning the emergence of sex differences in insecurity in middle childhood. This commentary highlights the significant gaps in research knowledge that must be addressed before the merits of their proposals can be evaluated. It also examines the multiple meanings and functions of “attachment” as this term applies to child–parent and adult affectional relationships, and their association. Their ideas certainly deserve further exploration, especially in the broader context of elucidating the life-span implications of early attachment within the framework of life history theory.