Men’s Long Term Mating Strategies CHAPTER 5 Why do Men Commit? Because women demand it… Access to mates Increase in paternity certainty Increase in offspring survival Increase in status and alliances Assessing Reproductive Value Concealed ovulation- shifts focus from estrus detection to reproductive value detection Reproductive Value: the average expected number of children a person is likely to have in the future Fertility: actual reproductive performance- how many viable offspring are produced? Preference for Youth “moko dude” females are preferred worldwide Men prefer women about 2.5 years younger With increasing age, the age preference gap grows Adolescent boys prefer slightly older females Helps to examine alternative explanations for preferences Older men prefer women in mid 30’s- beyond maximum fertility Compromise between desire and reality? Compatibility? Evolved Standards of Beauty “Beauty is in the adaptations of the beholder” Don Symons Physical cues Hair quality Skin quality Facial femininity Facial symmetry Facial averageness http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hibyAJOSW8U What Makes a Face Feminine? Averaging Faces Beauty Continued Standards emerge in infancy Standards are consistent across cultures Pleasure centers of the brain are activated by beautiful faces- they are rewarding Body Preferences: Waist to Hip Ratio Waist-to-hip ratio of .70 Correlates strongly with fertility Excellent indicator of health Correlates with cognitive function New studies find it predicts cognitive development in children Body Preferences: Slim or Plump? Most culturally variable body preference More a function of resource scarcity In the US, women’s ideals are thinner than men’s Sex Differences and Cultural Evolution Consistently over time and culture, physical attractiveness is more important to men The importance placed on attractiveness has increased over the past century Do Men Know When Women are Ovulating? Men have much to gain from detecting ovulation Channeling efforts and resources Mate guarding Evidence that men may detect ovulation Facial changes- rosier and lighter Decrease in waist-to-hip ratio Ovulating women are touched more in bars Men prefer scent of ovulating women Facial attractiveness increases Can men detect it or are they just responding to women’s behaviors? The Problem of Paternity Uncertainty The challenge of concealed ovulation Marriage as one solution Desire for premarital chastity Depends largely on status of women in a society Quest for postmarital fidelity Role of sexual experience and promiscuity Context Effects on Men’s Mating Behaviors Men with resources are most able to actualize their preferences As income goes up, men seek younger partners Exposure to attractive women lowers men’s perceptions of and commitment to their partners Spiraling competition- eating disorders and plastic surgery The Role of Testosterone T plays a key role in mating effort and intrasexual competition T is hard on the immune system Higher T is associated with lower parenting effort T levels drop when a man is mated long term, but less if he is still pursuing other mating opportunities T levels drop when men have children- even after they hold babies Men’s Behaviors: Personal Ads Men respond to women’s ads more than women respond to men’s Younger women receive more responses than older women Mentioning physical attractiveness produces more responses, especially by men Men’s Behavior: Marriage and Competition Men are older at marriage: 3 years, 5 years, and 8 years (first, second, third marriages) Women respond to men’s preferences Makeup and hair enhancements Dieting and exercise (and plastic surgery) Women are more likely to lie about age Female derogation tactics Appearance Fidelity Eating disorders: a byproduct of sexual competition?