Universality of attachment?


I think that what Ganz (2018) is saying in his article (referenced below) is that attachment is pretty much universal, but not perfectly universal.  He goes on to describe how in the ultra-orthodox community sensitivity isn’t a prized or central.  And clearly the community is surviving and even multiplying at higher rates than more secular parts of Israeli society.  Maybe his position could be summarized as “attachment is largely universal but not independent of culture and context.” (my words not his).  I agree with that position.
So for example, let’s say that in the micro-society of a certain family that the caregivers abuse the child.  As a result the child develops disorganized attachment (fearful avoidant attachment).  Then let’s assume that this disorganized attachment contributes greatly to the development anti-social and/or paranoid personality disorders, in adulthood.  (I do believe disorganized attachment is at the root of many personality disorders.) Well in that family both fear and aggression would have been legitimately adaptive learnings (schemas) and lenses through which to see the world.  I’d say that that’s what the environment demanded of the child!  

Moreover, certain societies possess lower indices of collaboration, and baseline levels of trust between individuals.  

See this quote:  “Global comparisons of trust attitudes around the world today suggest very large time-persistent cross-country heterogeneity. In one extreme, in countries such as Norway, Sweden and Finland, more than 60% of respondents in the World Value Survey think that people can be trusted. And in the other extreme, in countries such as Colombia, Brazil, Ecuador and Peru, less than 10% think that this is the case.” (Ortiz-Ospina & Roser (2016))



An argument could be made that in low societies the development of strong aggressive and/or fearful traits which are associated with both disorganized attachment and antisocial and paranoid personality disorders could be *more* adaptive than in the context of high trust societies.  (I think this is only the relatively the case not absolutely).

Now, I would, however, expect that anxiety, depression, dissociation, and complex PTSD would still present themselves in this individual as these conditions would present themselves in a person with a similar attachment-traumas in the US or Finland.  
I would think the the ‘syndrome’ of disorganized attachment would still ‘quack like a duck’ in that low trust society like it would in ours.  But, still, it could be marginally less maladaptive in that larger low-trust society and most certainly less maladaptive in the micro-culture of that family.

In a sense I think we come to ontological questions of “Is a thing the same thing independent of context?”  I think no, in the absolute sense.  But, in a more relative sense.  I’d say it’s still useful to take the view that a thing is often, pretty much, the same thing in different contexts, but just not absolutely so.  Given these very loose ontological standards, it’s useful/skillful to view attachment as largely universal (intentionally weak claim).

So what I am getting at?  The postmodern, culture-contextualized view is useful, and kind of true.  But so is a more substantialist view that seems to posits fixed objectivity and universality.  
I think here we see how the view we take gives us the answer consistent with that view and not a fixed and ultimate truth.

Ganz, Z., (2018) Attachment Theory’s Universality Hypothesis: Clinical Implications for Culturally Responsive Assessment, Smith College Studies in Social Work, DOI:  [Attachment Theory’s Universality Hypothesis: Clinical Implications for Culturally Responsive Assessment: Smith College Studies in Social Work: Vol 88, No 4](https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/00377317.2018.1507369%0A)

Ortiz-Ospina, E., & Roser, M. (2016) – “Trust”. /Published online at OurWorldInData.org./ Retrieved from: ‘https://ourworldindata.org/trust’ [Online Resource]

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