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Human mate choice and the wedding ring effect: Are married men more attractive?

Uller, Tobias and Johansson, Christoffer LU (2003) In Human Nature 14(3). p.267-276
Abstract
Individuals are often restricted to indirect cues when assessing the mate value of a potential partner. Females of some species have been shown to copy each other’s choice; in other words, the probability of a female choosing a particular male increases if he has already been chosen by other females. Recently it has been suggested that mate-choice copying could be an important aspect of human mate choice as well. We tested one of the hypotheses, the so-called wedding ring effect—that women would prefer men who are already engaged or married—in a series of live interactions between men and women. The results show that women do not find men signaling engagement, or being perceived as having a partner, more attractive or higher in... (More)
Individuals are often restricted to indirect cues when assessing the mate value of a potential partner. Females of some species have been shown to copy each other’s choice; in other words, the probability of a female choosing a particular male increases if he has already been chosen by other females. Recently it has been suggested that mate-choice copying could be an important aspect of human mate choice as well. We tested one of the hypotheses, the so-called wedding ring effect—that women would prefer men who are already engaged or married—in a series of live interactions between men and women. The results show that women do not find men signaling engagement, or being perceived as having a partner, more attractive or higher in socioeconomic status. Furthermore, signs of engagement did not influence the women’s reported willingness to engage in short-term or long-term relationships with the men. Thus, this study casts doubt on some simplified theories of human mate-choice copying, and alternative, more complex scenarios are outlined and discussed. (Less)
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author
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Human mate choice - Mate-choice copying - Wedding ring effect
in
Human Nature
volume
14
issue
3
pages
267 - 276
publisher
Springer
external identifiers
  • scopus:0346938372
ISSN
1045-6767
DOI
language
English
LU publication?
no
id
bcc098f0-0c42-4d49-980a-ff31f157a874 (old id 951354)
date added to LUP
2008-01-24 16:19:17
date last changed
2018-05-29 10:48:10
@article{bcc098f0-0c42-4d49-980a-ff31f157a874,
  abstract     = {Individuals are often restricted to indirect cues when assessing the mate value of a potential partner. Females of some species have been shown to copy each other’s choice; in other words, the probability of a female choosing a particular male increases if he has already been chosen by other females. Recently it has been suggested that mate-choice copying could be an important aspect of human mate choice as well. We tested one of the hypotheses, the so-called wedding ring effect—that women would prefer men who are already engaged or married—in a series of live interactions between men and women. The results show that women do not find men signaling engagement, or being perceived as having a partner, more attractive or higher in socioeconomic status. Furthermore, signs of engagement did not influence the women’s reported willingness to engage in short-term or long-term relationships with the men. Thus, this study casts doubt on some simplified theories of human mate-choice copying, and alternative, more complex scenarios are outlined and discussed.},
  author       = {Uller, Tobias and Johansson, Christoffer},
  issn         = {1045-6767},
  keyword      = {Human mate choice - Mate-choice copying - Wedding ring effect},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {3},
  pages        = {267--276},
  publisher    = {Springer},
  series       = {Human Nature},
  title        = {Human mate choice and the wedding ring effect: Are married men more attractive?},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/},
  volume       = {14},
  year         = {2003},
}