|Title||Early Reasoning about Affiliation and Caregiving|
|Publication Type||Conference Poster|
|Year of Publication||2015|
|Authors||Spokes, AC, Spelke, ES|
|Conference Name||Cognitive Development Society (CDS)|
|Number||ID: 325/PS-III: 39|
Considerable research has examined infants’ reasoning about and evaluations of social agents, but two questions remain unanswered: First, do infants organize observed social relations into larger structures, inferring the relationship between t wo social beings based on their relations to a third party? Second, how do infants reaso n about a type of social relations prominent in all societies: kinship relations that modulate caregiving? In a series of experiments using animated events, we ask whether 9 - , 11 - , and 15 - to 18 - month - old infants expect two babies who were comforted by the same caregiver, or two caregivers who comforted the same baby, to affiliate with one another. We find that older infants make these inferences in a caregiving context, but n ot in a different context involving social interactions among adults. Thus, infant s are sensitive to at least one aspect of kinship relations — caregiving — and organize these relations into larger social structures.
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