Attachment disorders: an evolutionary perspective

H. Minnis, J. Reekie, D. Young, A. Gray, T. O'Connor, A. Ronald, R. Plomin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We were interested to read Dr O’Connell’s response to our paper. Unfortunately we did not have space to do justice to a discussion of reactive attachment disorder from an evolutionary point of view, although we agree that this is an important theoretical perspective. Dr Minnis first became interested in reactive attachment disorder when working as an orphanage doctor in Guatemala. Most of the children there displayed symptoms of the disinhibited form of the disorder and it seemed clear that these behaviours were adaptive in a setting where primary attachment figures were lacking. We have touched on the maintenance of these behaviours from an evolutionary perspective in a previous paper (Minnis et al, 2006).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)460
Number of pages1
JournalBritish Journal of Psychiatry
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2007


  • attachment disorder
  • attachment theory
  • child attachment


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