Thursday, 18 Dec, 2008 Science

Women Choose Prestige Over Coercive Tactics in Potential Partners


According to a new study published in the journal "Personal Relationships," women choose mates that are appreciated among their peers for their abilities and achievements. The study says that women are less likely to prefer a man who uses aggressive tactics to subordinate their opponents. Coercive tactics were found attractive only when men applied them at athletics competitions.

Scientists carried out three studies, where they examined college women at two American universities. Jeffrey K. Snyder, Lee A. Kirkpatrick, and H. Clark Barrett asked the participants to evaluate theoretical potential mates characterized in written vignettes. Researchers had the goal of analyzing the respective effects of men's dominance and status on women's evaluation of men. They found that when evaluating men as possible mates, women are sensitive towards the domineering behaviors expressed by men. Women were more attracted to such behaviors in athletics competitions, but within interpersonal relationships, they found such traits unattractive.

It is worth mentioning that when choosing possible partners for lasting relationships, women are less attracted to dominance, instead they show more interest in prestige.

The authors of the study mention that their findings come into direct contradiction with the dating advice of some modern psychologists, who recommend their male clients to show aggressiveness in their social relations.

"Women most likely avoid dominant men as long-term romantic partners because a dominant man may also be domineering in the household," they say.

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