Mate preference talk in speed dating conversations
A few years ago, Swami and an international group of psychologists led by Martin Tovée of Newcastle University surveyed the female body preferences of men (and women) in the United Kingdom and among the Zulu of South Africa.Participants flipped through a photo booklet of real but blurry-faced women wearing tight gray leotards and rated each one.I must stress here to my girlfriend and mother that I do not do this to admire the view. But another part of me likes to observe the reactions we—we're a caravan, now—receive from the menfolk we pass.To walk this way is to witness the spasmodic necks and detoured eyes and high-pitched whistled salutes and deep, perfumed inhalations and even, at times, affected indifference that together form the grand choreography of male desire.It doesn't take a psychologist to know what men want.But give a whole lot of them a whole lot of time and you begin to understand the considerable nuance that governs what men want.A subsequent study corroborated the shortcomings of a global thin ideal, as well as the role of Western media in propagating it.Women need not move to Mpolweni to find such flexibility in action.
Average-looking women, mind you—"moderately attractive," even "slightly unattractive"—in casual clothes. It was important that the young man remain coherent. Extrapolating the finding to the real world means that on any given first date, the man would sooner sleep with the hostess than dine with his companion. Pack up the lab equipment, please, shut off the lights, and move on to more important behavioral studies. And our motives for sex have diversified (as have women's)—a reality Hatfield now calls "one of our planet's most important new developments." We want sex, but sometimes we want it to enhance the emotional relationship.Some people like pulp in their orange juice, after all.Often while walking the streets of Manhattan I adjust both the pace and position of my stride so as to follow close behind, but not illegally close behind, an attractive woman.As their social networks changed, so did male preferences.
Maybe men don't lock their eyes onto 36-24-36 like some broken slot machine after all, but instead possess a "flexible behavioral repertoire" that adapts sexual preferences to changing environments, the researchers conclude in .
While men in developed societies go numb for sinuous curves, those in many developing countries surrender to a larger, more parallel contour.