chapter  9
12 Pages

The Adult Attachment Interview


The Adult Attachment Interview (AAI) is a semi-structured interview created ‘to assess the security of the adult’s overall working model of attachment, that is, the security of the self in relation to attachment in its generality rather than in relation to any particular present or past relationship’ (George et al. 1985: 78). Since the 1980s when that seminal research into adult attachment was introduced, the AAI has been used or referenced in the literature hundreds of times. Its validity and reliability have been extensively explored and established, and it has generated great discussion and prompted investigation into the phenomenon of working models of attachment or attachment representations (Hesse 2009). Despite the expense involved in using the interview with respect to training, time, and money, it is the most infl uential and possibly the most valuable method for assessing representational attachment security in adults. The importance of representational attachment security is discussed in the companion volume: The Routledge Handbook of Attachment: Theory (Holmes & Farnfi eld 2014).