Developments and Regressions in Rule Use: The Case of Zinedine Zidane

Jacob A. Burack, Natalie Russo, Tammy Dawkins, Mariëtte Huizinga

Research output: Chapter in Book/Entry/PoemChapter

2 Scopus citations


Zinedine Zidane's "head-butt" of the Italian defender Marco Materazzi in the championship game of the 2006 World Cup provides the context for asking why people make clearly detrimental decisions, even in contexts in which they are experienced and expert. Werner's developmental notion of regression is an essential component of a developmental framework that can be used to understand Zidane's impulsive behavior, as even well-ingrained rules can be overwhelmed by lower developmental behaviors in certain circumstances. In this context, the notion of the development of rule learning and use is more nuanced than the simple attainment of the understanding or even the ability to of a rule in certain situations, but entails the adaptability to flexibly implement the optimal choice of rules in particularly challenging and stressful situations, such as the World Cup final.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSelf- and Social-Regulation
Subtitle of host publicationExploring the Relations Between Social Interaction, Social Understanding, and the Development of Executive Functions
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780199776962
ISBN (Print)9780195327694
StatePublished - May 1 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Developmental regression
  • Expertise
  • Heinz werner
  • Orthogenetic principle
  • Rule use
  • Stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology


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