In This Chapter

Disorganised attachment and reactive attachment disorders

Authored by: David Shemmings

The Routledge Handbook of Attachment: Theory

Print publication date:  July  2014
Online publication date:  June  2014

Print ISBN: 9780415538268
eBook ISBN: 9781315762098
Adobe ISBN: 9781317647157


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Persistent and often deep-rooted disagreements exist between researchers and clinicians over the difference between disorganised attachment – DA (Main & Hesse 1998) and reactive attachment disorder – RAD (e.g. Zeanah 1996); indeed in 2003 a special edition of the journal Attachment and Human Development was devoted to the exploration of these differences. This chapter seeks not to reconcile them but to examine their distinctive features and emphases as it is ‘quite clear that that disorganized attachment is not synonymous with RAD’ (Zeanah & Gleason 2010: 9).

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