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Interpersonal Attraction: Meeting, Liking, Becoming Acquainted Chapter 7 Interpersonal Attraction • What Causes Attraction? • “Need to belong” and “self-actualize” • Propinquity (Proximity) effect – Example: Friends at work, school, neighbors as children… – Example: Consider your closest college friends (and your least favorite people). Does propinquity seem to play a role? • Mere exposure effect – Example: Shoes/TV/outfit – Example: Guy/girl at work – Example: Stare at one another – Example: http://www.sosuave.com/quick/tip29.htm Class Discussion: Online dating • Online Dating: U.S. residents spent $469.5 million on online dating and personals in 2004, the largest segment of “paid content” on the web, according to a study conducted by the Online Publishers Association (OPA) and comScore Networks. • At the end of November 2004, there were 844 lifestyle and dating sites, a 38 percent increase since the start of the year, according to Hitwise Inc. However, market share was increasingly being dominated by several large services, including Yahoo Personals, Match.com, American Singles, and eHarmony. eHarmony CEO Greg Forgatch noted that despite the growing number of sites catering to specific niches "to become a major player, it still takes a large number of people." • In 2002, a Wired magazine article forecast that, "Twenty years from now, the idea that someone looking for love without looking for it online will be silly, akin to skipping the card catalog to instead wander the stacks because 'the right books are found only by accident.' ...serendipity is the hallmark of inefficient markets, and the marketplace of love, like it or not, is becoming more efficient" • What do you think of online dating? MySpace meeting? Research shows that people are very attracted to the person online before meeting. Do you think that this connection before makes the person more “physically attractive” after meeting? Interpersonal Attraction • Similarity – Example: Are your friends similar to you? Boyfriend/girlfriend? Does similarity foster lasting relationships more than “opposites attract”? • Other examples of similarity: – Opinions and personality – Interpersonal style – Interests and experiences • Why is similarity so important? – Like us back – “Self-justification” – People who disagree with our beliefs Interpersonal Attraction • Reciprocal liking – Example: Hearing that a guy/girl likes you – Example: Turning someone down – Why? “Self-fulfilling prophecy?” • Physical attractiveness and liking – Example: Women vs. men Interpersonal Attraction • What is attractive? • http://homepage.psy.utexas.edu/HomePage/Group/LangloisLAB/ind ex.html – Facial features • Example: Babies • Example: Celebrities – Height – Body shape • Hip-to-waist ratio and shoulder-to-hip ratio • Evolutionary – Children Adult Elderly – Too skinny? – Breast/Penis size – Bigger = Better? – Size/weight – Evolutionary = good genes Close Relationships • Love and Relationships – Evolution of love: Choosing a mate • Evolutionary approach to love • The “golden egg” and cheap sperm – Women are more attracted to men who… – Men attracted to… Interpersonal Attraction • Cultural standards of beauty – Most individuals across cultures will rate faces as similar in attractiveness. Why? • The power of familiarity – Example: Text – Superimposed picture • Why? Similarity? Propinquity? Class Discussion • Does physical attractiveness or unattractiveness alter people’s perception of the abilities and efforts students bring to the academic world? • Does the attractiveness or unattractiveness of male students and female students produce the same effects on a person’s perception? – Chia, et al. (1998) • How can these results apply to students and job applicants?
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