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Beauty and Attraction

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By laurabee94
Words 568
Pages 3
The subjects of attraction and beauty are topics I have almost always found to be very curious and intriguing, so I was very excited to learn about them in this chapter. Before reading this chapter, I questioned whether our attraction to physical beauty is a disposition we are born with or if it is something that we become more responsive to due to the way our society promotes and idolizes it. I also wonder why people become so obsessed with this idea of physical beauty that they are willing to take extreme measures to obtain it. In this chapter, I was very surprised to learn that our attraction to beauty is not entirely the result of the culture we are raised in, but it is also due to our human nature. A study described in this chapter found that infants (too young to have been affected by culture’s idea of beauty)spent more time staring at attractive faces versus unattractive faces (p. 347).This supports the idea that we are born to favor physical beauty. But how do we classify what is beautiful? I think the idea, proposed by Judith Langlois and Lori Roggman, makes a lot of sense. They proposed that people tend to find “averaged” faces as attractive because they are more prototypical and familiar (p. 347). This made sense to me because in my introductory to psychology class, we learned that when people are asked to imagine an apple, they picture a red, shiny, flawless apple. We do this because it’s easier for our brain to take a shortcut by imagining an average of all the traits instead of thinking about all the individual traits of each apple we have ever seen. Maybe this is why we are more favorable to beautiful people. Perhaps we like to look at attractive or “average” faces because there is less to process, whereas, looking at someone who has more distinctive facial features makes more work for our brains (and humans don’t like work). I also think this…...

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