Biological and Evolutionary Reasons of Mate Choice Essay

5554 Words Jan 17th, 2013 23 Pages
Rules of attraction: Biological and evolutionary reasons of mate choice


Within the past decade we have witnessed a series of new developments and an enormously growing interest in the understanding of human behaviour, especially when it comes to the basic principles of human mate choice. Mate preference is something which is often considered a very individual choice and appears to be influenced by cultural and economic norms. However, on the basis of numerous research works, it is a today’s acceptation that attractiveness represents a signal resulting from sexual selection. Although we have different preference for facial expression, body shape or height, recent findings suggest that mate preferences are mainly cued on
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In the majority of cases the two fighting individuals are male. The second mechanism of choice is based on the conspicuous appearance of a male and the choice is usually made by the female. In the course of evolution, features like horns, increase in body size, colourful feathers or bird song were developed through these mechanisms to impress or attract a possible mate (Grammer, Fink, Møller, Thornhill, 2003). Those signals are common in nature and are used to guide the counterparts’ behaviour into a certain direction.

What applies to animals also seems likely for humans. Human mate choice therefore is strongly influenced by attractiveness and our appearance. People who are attractive have less difficulties to socialize with others, mostly have an earlier encounter with sexual experiences (Rhodes, 2006) and an overall better integration in social relationships.

Beauty can also be considered a visual signal because human beauty can trigger different innate characteristics such as sympathy, kindness, or protective behaviour. This may influence our choice for a partner as e.g. individuals with features signalling good health, youth, fertility or strength are chosen above individuals that lack those qualities. (Grammer, Fink, Møller, Thornhill, 2003). Thus, beauty may also represent genetic advantages which we can pass down to our offspring. On that account, it is also obvious that humans are constantly aiming to manipulate

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