INTRODUCTION The case of Joan R. is taken from a longitudinal, multidiscipline
study of excessive infant crying in relation to parent behaviour. All the infants studied were children of university students living
in the Student Housing Project. The study deals primarily with the interaction between the parents and the infant and the assessment of this interaction as an retiologic factor in crying. Psychodynamic factors influencing the mother's behaviour and the infant's physiologic responses were studied. A description of the mother's handling of the infant was obtained from interviews with her, from observations of her behaviour during her clinic visits, and home visits by a paediatrician and visiting public health nurses.