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Attractiveness Is beautiful or handsome synonymous with good?

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Presentation on theme: "Attractiveness Is beautiful or handsome synonymous with good?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Attractiveness Is beautiful or handsome synonymous with good?

2 Is beauty only skin deep? Is attractiveness a superficial feature? The survival of a genetic line hinges on mate selection. Like it or not, physical appearance plays a major role in life. 82% of males and 93% of females are actively oriented toward maintaining an attractive appearance.

3 Is beauty culturally universal? 6 month old infants turn their heads toward attractive faces and away from unattractive faces (Rubenstein, Kalakanis, & Longlois (1999). People in different cultures generally agree on which faces are attractive (Cunningham et al. 1995; Langlois et al. 2000; Perrett et al. 1994)

4 Looking up to leaders Since 1900, the taller candidate has won 19 of 28 presidential elections –Obama 62, McCain 59 –Only 3 of 43 American presidents -- James Madison, Benjamin Harrison and Martin Van Buren -- have been under 5 feet 7 inches

5 Size matters For Men Half of all CEOs are 6 or more. A 2004 study found that every inch of height adds $789 in salary per year. The study controlled for gender, weight and age. Someone who is 6 tall earns $5,525 more annually than someone who is 56. For Women Taller women earned more as a result of their height, though they gained only two- thirds that of the men. In a British study, both sexes judged taller women to be more intelligent, assertive, independent and ambitious.

6 The Beauty is good stereotype Dion, Berschied, & Walster (1972) developed the beauty is good stereotype. –Childrens fairly tales equate beauty with goodness –Popular TV reality shows emphasize vanity –Celebutards: Jessica Simpson, Britney Spears, Lindsay Lohan Tabloids and womens magazines focus on looks

7 A double standard for attractiveness? Older male news anchors –Daine Sawyer = 64 –Wolf Blitzer = 62 –Bill OReilly = 61 –Katie Couric = 53 Older male actors –Sean Connery, Harrison Ford, Bruce Willis Heavy set actors vs. actresses Men become distinguished with age

8 Biology and attractiveness Evolutionary selection: –facial attractiveness affects mate selection and the likelihood of reproductive success.

9 Facial symmetry Facial symmetry and proportionality is preferred –Bilateral symmetry: left and right sides of the face are mirror images –Proportionality: equally sized features

10 Asymmetrical faces

11 Averageness faces with average features are preferred faces that are closer to average are consistently rated as more attractive

12 Sexual dimorphism For female faces, greater feminization is preferred For male faces, results are mixed –More recent studies show a slight preference for feminized male faces –Womens preferences shift toward masculine faces during ovulation –Men, gay or straight, prefer high sexual dimorphism in the faces of the sex that they are attracted to.

13 Sexual dimorphism Examples of masculinized (right) and feminized (left) versions of a male face.

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