Attraktivitätskriterien und deren Wahrnehmung

Aus dem Buch Do Gentlemen Really Prefer Blondes?: Bodies, Behavior, and Brains–The Science Behind Sex, Love, & Attraction darüber wie schnell wir Schönheit aufnehmen:

To find out exactly how quickly we can tell if a person is hot or not, neuroscientists Ingrid Olson and Christy Marshuetz devised a sneaky experiment. They exposed men and women to a series of pre-rated faces, some gorgeous and other homely, and asked them to rate their appearance. The twist was that the faces flickered on the screen for ony thirteen milliseconds — a flash so fast that the exasperated viewers swore they didn’t see anything. Yet when forced to rate the faces they thought they didn’t see, the judges were uncannily accurate. Without knowing why, they gave good-looking faces significantly higher scores than unattractive ones.

The fascinating implication here is that beauty is perceived subconsciously. It’s not as if the subjects had much time to meditate on anyone’s hotness — they weren’t even aware of seeing a face. To a great extent, first impressions of people’s looks are less about choice and culture and cultivated tastes, and more about something deeper and universal. Judging attractiveness seems to happen just as automatically and matter-of-factly as judgng identity, gender, age, and expression.

Die Studie dazu:

Those who are physically attractive reap many benefits—from higher average wages to a wider variety of mate choices. Recent studies have investigated what constitutes beauty and how beauty affects explicit social judgments, but little is known about the perceptual or cognitive processing that is affected by aesthetic judgments of faces and why beauty affects our behavior. In this study, the authors show that beauty is perceived when information is minimized by masking or rapid presentation. Perceiving and processing beauty appear to require little attention and to bias subsequent cognitive processes. These facts may make beauty difficult to ignore, possibly leading to its importance in social evaluations.

Quelle: Facial Attractiveness Is Appraised in a Glance (PDF)

Das Schönheit sehr schnell aufgenommen werden können, überrascht nicht: Sieht man Schönheit und Attraktivität als eingespeicherte Partnerbewertungskriterien dann ist eine richtige und schnelle Aufnahme dieser eine der wichtigsten Aufgaben für das Gehirn. Alles was mit Fortpflanzung zu tun hat, ist für eine Selektion hoch anfällig. Gene, die dafür sorgen, dass die Träger dieses Genes eher Personen gut finden, mit denen sie sich gut fortpfanzen könen, reichern sich schnell im Genpool an.

Interessant in dem Buch auch die Passage über die Auswahlkriterien von schönen Frauen:

The evolutonary psychologists recruited a rotating team of male and female interviewers who paired up and evaluated more than two hundred married participants in the Midwest. Each subject was judged for physical attractiveness and assessed in three separate sessions for the factors they valued and insisted on in choosing a mate. The prettiest women had the highest standards — they wanted and expected their partners to be masculine, fit, physically attractive, loving, educated, a few years older than themselves, and desirous of home and children, with a high income potential. Surprising to the researchers there was only one quality beautiful women did not insist on more than plainer women did: intelligence.

Interessant auch eine Aufstellung bei „Hooking Up Smart“

  • good-looking (43%)
  • intelligent (40%)
  • good income potential (40%)
  • control of social resources (37%)
  • food provided (36%)
  • control of material resources (36%)
  • protective toward female (35%)
  • male older (30%)
  • male dominant toward female (28%)
  • confident (26%)
  • well-educated (23%)
  • good build (23%)
  • aggressive (22%)
  • generous (22%)
  • accurate focus (21%)
  • chemistry (21%)
  • eye contact (19%)
  • baby fantasies (18%)
  • outstanding talent (17%)
  • high status (16%)
  • tall (16%)
  • good with children (15%)
  • female’s parents approved (5%)

Und auch über „Hooking up Smart“:

The attraction to most of these traits is a manifestation of female hypergamy–especially “good-looking,” which turns out to have quite a different meaning for women than for men: “Every woman responds to a man whose looks correspond to her particular stereotype of power,” Remoff observes in a passage she italicizes.

Meiner Meinung nach eine sehr wichtige Erkenntnis. Status ist abhängig von dem, was die jeweilige Frau nach ihrer Kultur, Subkultur oder Gruppe etc als Status bildend ansieht. Zu den Unterschieden hatte ich auch schon einmal etwas in „Sozialer Status und Evolution“ geschrieben.