social development, emotional development, childhood, behavioral patterns


The study of children's social and emotional development requires that attention be paid to such factors as dispositional/biological factors (e.g., temperament), familial interactions and relationships, social contexts (e.g., school, neighborhood), and culture. For example, Hinde (1995) has advanced the notion that development be considered from a multi-level perspective beginning with individual characteristics and progressing the interaction, relationship, and group levels of analysis and conjecture. At the level of the individual child, developmental scientists have studies such constructs as temperament that might lead to problematic social or behavioral outcomes. One such interpersonal characteristic is that of "difficult" temperament – a phenomenon typically comprising such factors as high activity level and anger proneness, or high emotional reactivity combined with poor regulatory control. Difficult temperament has been thought, by some, to be an early developmental precursor of an externalizing/undercontrolled behavior pattern (e.g., Bates, Bayles, Bennett, Ridge, & Brown, 1991; Rubin, Hastings, Chen, Stewart, & McNichol, 1998; Sanson, Oberklaid, Pedlow, & Prior, 1991). Another dispositional characteristic, behavioral inhibition, has been regarded as a precursor of an internalizing/overcontrolled behavior patterns (e.g., Fox, Rubin, Calkins, Marshall, Coplan, Porges, Long, & Stewart, 1995). The focus of this chapter is on behavioral inhibition and its conceptually related construct and variants; most notably, social wariness, shyness, and social withdrawal.

Original Publication Citation

Burgess, K. B, Rubin, K. H., Cheah, C. S. L., & Nelson, L. J. (2001). Behavioral inhibition, social withdrawal, and parenting. In W. R. Crozier & L. E. Alden (Eds), The self, shyness, and social anxiety: A handbook of concepts, research, and interventions (pp. 137-158). Sussex, UK: Wiley.

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Peer-Reviewed Article

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Family, Home, and Social Sciences


Family Life

University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor