Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 26 May 2019

Abstract and Keywords

In this chapter, we consider the possibility that attachment theory provides a strong, researchable relational framework for positive psychology. We first present a brief overview of attachment theory and discuss the role that the sense of attachment security plays in fostering physical and mental health, social adjustment, and psychological growth. We then review evidence showing that chronic (i.e., dispositional, trait-like) as well as contextual activation of mental representations of attachment security attenuates defensive motives that might otherwise distort social perception and cognition and lead to interpersonal and intergroup conflict. We also summarize evidence for the claim that attachment security, which can be experimentally enhanced, acts as a growth-enhancing agent, fostering prosocial motives and cognitions, promoting personal development and improved relationships, and leading to the development of what classic personality theorist Carl Rogers (1961) called a “fully functioning person.”

Keywords: attachment, close relationships, security, mental health, resilience, coping, psychological growth

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.