Relationship between human reproductive behaviour and Sexual Selection

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1. Describe intersexual selection

  • Mate choice; the preference of one sex for the opposite sex that possess favourable characteristics and therefore good genes that will be passed onto offspring
  • Mate choice; members of the same sex compete for access to members of the opposite sex and the winners go on to mate and pass on their genes that helped them win
  • Mate competition; the preference of one sex for the opposite sex that possess favourable characteristics and therefore good genes that will be passed onto offspring
  • Mate competition; members of the same sex compete for access to members of the opposite sex and the winners go on to mate and pass on their genes that helped them win
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2. Issue of inter sexual selection

  • Both sexes had a preference for symmetrical faces as they represented healthier genes
  • Reductionistic to reduce a complex subject of mate choice down to natural selection
  • Deterministic to suggest that natural selection based on based on whether they have good genes completely determines the mate we choose, not all relationships are carried out for reproduction e.g. birth control, homosexual relationships
  • Cause and effect relationship cannot be established

3. Which study found that men were more attracted to women with young faces with characteristics such as large eyes, small nose and chin?

  • Cunningham
  • Singh
  • Waynforth
  • Bruce and Young

4. Describe intrasexual selection

  • Mate competition; the preference of one sex for the opposite sex that possess favourable characteristics and therefore good genes that will be passed onto offspring
  • Mate competition; members of the same sex compete for access to members of the opposite sex and the winners go on to mate and pass on their genes that helped them win
  • Mate choice; members of the same sex compete for access to members of the opposite sex and the winners go on to mate and pass on their genes that helped them win
  • Mate choice; the preference of one sex for the opposite sex that possess favourable characteristics and therefore good genes that will be passed onto offspring

5. What did Buss (1989) find?

  • Short term mating preferences in women allowed the women to leave poor quality relationships and have genetically diverse offspring increasing likelihood of their survival
  • In a cross-cultural study, it was found that men valued physical attractiveness more than women and women valued valued financial success more
  • Across cultures there a preference for a female 0.7 waist to hip ratio going an hourglass figure
  • Both sexes had a preference for symmetrical faces as they represented healthier genes

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