What do young children, as they grow from infancy to childhood, understand of others and of their social world? How does this understanding change, and what influences its development?
The Beginnings of Social Understanding draws on detailed studies of children within their families - their disputes with mother and siblings, their empathy and cooperation, their `pretend' stories and questions about others, and their `jokes' - to show vividly how children come to understand the social rules of the family and the feelings, intentions and relationships of others.
Illustrating this case with the words of the children themselves, Judy Dunn argues that self-interest is an important force in their social development and that children's emotional experiences and their moral discourse of the family contribute crucially to their growing understanding of their social world.
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