THE NATURE VERSUS NURTURE argument has been debated at length and, this week, new research has claimed that the root causes of violence and anti-social behaviour are developed in the first three years of life.
A seminal study, conducted in New Zealand, showed that nurses could predict the criminal tendencies of children 18 years in advance – just by watching them play as infants.
Clinical Criminologist George Hosking, an international expert on the prevention of violent crime, says a cycle of abuse can be perpetuated through generations. He also believes it can be successfully broken with early intervention methods.
This argument seems to present the case that people’s environment – and not their heredity – has a bigger effect on a person’s development. It also reasons that a changing environment can alter one’s behaviour and disrupt a cycle of violence.
So, today, we ask what do you think? Which has a bigger effect on how a child turns out – nature or nurture?