Attachment in institutionalized and community children in Romania

Charles H. Zeanah, Anna T. Smyke, Sebastian F. Koga, Elizabeth A Carlson, Charles A. Nelson, Susan W. Parker, Nathan A. Fox, Peter J. Marshall, Hermi R. Woodward

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

376 Scopus citations


This study examined attachment in institutionalized and community children 12-31 months of age in Bucharest, Romania. Attachment was assessed using ratings of attachment behaviors and ratings of caregiver descriptions in a structured interview. As predicted, children raised in institutions exhibited serious disturbances of attachment as assessed by all methods. Observed quality of caregiving was related to formation and organization of attachment in children living in institutions. These results held even when other variables, such as cognitive level, perceived competence, and quantitative interaction ratings, were controlled for. Ratings of attachment behavior in the Strange Situation and caregiver reports of signs of Reactive Attachment Disorder converged moderately. The implications of these findings for different perspectives on attachment are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1015-1028
Number of pages14
JournalChild development
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2005


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