Psychology, Department of


Date of this Version



Edwards, C.P. (1993). Behavioral sex differences in children of diverse cultures: The case of nurturance to infants. In M. Pereira & L. Fairbanks (Eds.), Juvenile Primates‑‑Life History, Development, and Behavior (pp.327-338). NY: Oxford,


Copyright © 1993 Oxford University Press, Inc.


This chapter draws on the data from the Children of Different Worlds study (Whiting & Edwards, 1988) to consider the origin of sex differences in children’s behavior worldwide, in particular: (1) how different kinds of social behavior are elicited by different contexts of socialization (defined by the sex, age, status, and kinship of social interactants, ongoing activities, and other potent dimensions of setting); (2) how these contexts of socialization are distributed across cultures and associated with various adult subsistence strategies, family structures, household patterns, and forms of social networks; and (3) how boys and girls of each age in diverse cultures come to occupy different contexts of socialization.