Thursday, November 14th, 2013

Pretty People Are Better: Science

"None of this absolutely proves Dr Elia’s hypothesis. But it looks plausible. If she is right, facial beauty ceases to be an arbitrary characteristic and instead becomes a reliable marker of underlying desirable behaviour. It is selected for both in the ways beautiful children are brought up, and in the number of children the beautiful have."

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dialectric (#6,128)

The premise is interesting, but the descriptors seem different, and more specific, than those used in some other 'science of beauty' articles – symmetry and youthful features.

None of it proves Dr. Elia's hypothesis in any way, shape, or form. I just read the Elia article and there's so much handwaving in it, I'm surprised she didn't take flight. Her general idea is that domestication of dogs and foxes breeds for more juvenile behavior and appearance (friendly puppy behavior). Humans also like things that look babies, hence a verrrrrry small preference for things like larger eyes (and I mean very, very small). So basically, she's arguing that the beautiful are also more childlike in their behavior, and thus lack the sophisticated emotional maturity of us uglies.

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