The adoption of the attachment theory in the forensic context shows the problematic interaction between law and psychological science, in two main aspects. The first concerns the risk of oversemplification of constructs and theories of the human development to be easily applied to the legal cases at hand. The second refers to the confusion between the clinical and psycho-forensic categories given the higher familiarity of the formers among practitioners. A further issue refers to the ideological implications of a causal account of the relationship between the child’s insecure pattern of attachment and the adult’s responsibility, which might be detrimental to civil and criminal proceedings involving families. An informed collaboration between legal and psychological practitioners, respectful of the epistemological fundamentals of the two disciplines, is to be recommended to avoid inappropriate applications of psychology to the forensic arena.

The attachment theory and the (still) ambiguous role of psychology in forensic proceedings

Curci Antonietta
2023-01-01

Abstract

The adoption of the attachment theory in the forensic context shows the problematic interaction between law and psychological science, in two main aspects. The first concerns the risk of oversemplification of constructs and theories of the human development to be easily applied to the legal cases at hand. The second refers to the confusion between the clinical and psycho-forensic categories given the higher familiarity of the formers among practitioners. A further issue refers to the ideological implications of a causal account of the relationship between the child’s insecure pattern of attachment and the adult’s responsibility, which might be detrimental to civil and criminal proceedings involving families. An informed collaboration between legal and psychological practitioners, respectful of the epistemological fundamentals of the two disciplines, is to be recommended to avoid inappropriate applications of psychology to the forensic arena.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11586/442160
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