Molly O (molly4114) wrote in philomafia,
Molly O

  • Music:

"To be loved, be lovable," advised Ovid.

...Touching is a crucial aspect of all human relationships. As the main avenue by which the need for intimacy is satisfied, skin contact is biologically essential to an infant. For this reason, perhaps, the nerve fibers that connect the skin to the central nervous system are the most highly developed organs in the newborn baby's body. (Nor is this phenomenon limited to human babies. In a series of famous experiments psychologist Dr. Harry Harlow some years ago separated monkey babies from their mothers and substituted "dummy" mothers. One was built out of a bare wire frame, and another of sponge rubber covered with terry cloth. Both had wooden heads and artificial breasts. In half of each set of "mothers" a contraption enabled milk to be suckled through the breasts. Though it had always been assumed that the satisfaction of suckling was the prime cause of emotional attachment between infants and mothers, Harlow's monkey babies all became attached to the terry-cloth dummies, whether or not they were equipped to give milk. The infant monkeys spent hours clinging to the terry-cloth frames for the pleasure of physical contact alone.)
- Styles of Loving, Marcia Lasswell and Norman M. Lobsenz
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