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Ch 9 Notes.doc

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McGill University
PSYC 100
Daniel Levitin

Chapter 9 Attraction and Close RelationshipsBeing with Others A Fundamental Human MotiveThe need to belong is a basic human motiveSome people are so worries about how they come across that they suffer social anxiety intense feelings of discomfort in situations that invite public scrutiny People who have a network of close social ties in the form of friends lovers family members and coworkers tend to be happier and more satisfied than those who are more isolatedIn fact people who are socially connected are also physically healthier and less likely to die a premature deathThe Thrill of AffiliationNeed for Affiliation The desire to establish and maintain many rewarding interpersonal relationshipsIndividuals differ in the strength of their need for affiliation but it seems that people are motivates to establish and maintain an optimum balance of social contact sometimes craving the company of others sometimes wanting to be alonePeople would rather celebrate together than aloneStanley Schachter One condition that strongly arouses our need for affiliation is stress External threat triggers fear and motivates us to affiliate particularly with others who share the same threat and fearPeople who were expecting to get electric shocks would rather wait with people who were in the same situation as them rather than aloneHowever when engaging in embarrassing behavior people would rather be aloneYacov Rofe People love company in misery because of Utility Stress increases the desire to affiliate only when being with others is seen as useful in reducing the negative impact of the stressful situationFacing embarrassment being with others is more likely to increase stress than reduce itPeople facing an imminent threat seek each other out in order to gain cognitive clarity about the danger they are in The Agony of LonelinessShyness can arouse from different sources It can be a personality trait or shyness could have developed due to failed interactions with otherThus interpersonal problems of the past can cause social anxieties about the futureThere is some continuity that this shy aspect of our personalities may be predictable from our temperament and behavior as young children The problem stems from a paralyzing fear of rejectionLoneliness A feeling of deprivation about existing social relationsLoneliness is triggered by a discrepancy between the level of social contact that a person has and the level he or she wants Loneliness is more likely to occur during the time of disruption or transitionLoneliest group in North America are 1830 year olds Loneliness seems to decline over adulthoodThe Initial AttractionAffiliation is a necessary step in the formation of a social relationshipPeople are attracted to others with whom a relationship is rewarding The rewards may be direct attention money status information or the rewards may be indirect as when it feels good to be around someone beautiful smart funny or who happens to be in our presence when times are goodHuman beings all over the world exhibit patterns of attraction and mate selection that favor the conception birth and survival of their offspringFamiliarity Being There1We are more likely to become attracted to someone whom we have seen and become familiar with The 2 basic and necessary factors in the attraction process proximity and exposureThe proximity EffectThe best single predictor of whether two people will get together is nearnessPeople were most likely to become friends with residents of nearby apartments than those who lived far awayThe Mere Exposure EffectProximity does not necessarily spark attraction but to the extent that it increases frequency of contact its a good first stepRobert Zajonc found that the more often people saw a novel stimulus the more they came to like it He called this the mere exposure effect the more often people are exposed to a stimulus the more positively they evaluate that stimulusPeople do not even have to be aware of their prior exposures for this effect to occurFamiliarity can even influence our selfevaluationPhysical Attractiveness Getting Drawn InWe react more favorably to other who are physically attractive rather than those who are notPhysically attractive men and women earn more money and fare better than uglier people What is beautySome believe that certain faces are inherently more attractive than others There are 3 sources of evidence for this proposition1There is typically a high level of agreement2 People like faces in which the eyes nose lips and other features are not too different from the average People like averaged faces because they are more prototypically facelike and as such seem more familiar to us Some think that symmetry is what we find attractive because it is associated with health fitness and highfertility3 Babies have preference for faces considered attractive by adults Young infants spend more time looking at attractive faces In contrast to this some researches believe that physical attractiveness is subjective because people of different cultures enhance their beauty in different ways tats piercing paint fat women in Africa are attractiveAlso standards of beauty change over time The hourglass figure for women is becoming more slender Also people often see people as more attractive after they have grown to like themIn fact the more in love people are with their partners the less attracted they are to others of the opposite sex People feel less attractive after viewing super models of the same sex than after seeing homelier personsWhile exposure to highly attractive people of the opposite sex put people in a good mood doing the same for the same sex did just the oppositeWhy are we Blindsided by BeautyRegardless of how beauty is defined its clear that people seen as physically attractive are at a social advantageWe derive pleasure from being around beautiful peopleWhen averagelooking men and women are seen alongside someone else of the same sex they are rated as more attractive when the other person is good looking and as less attractive when he or she is plain lookingWhatisbeautifulisgood stereotype when people tend to associate physical attractiveness with other desirable qualitiesIn movies the more attractive characters were the more frequently they were portrays as virtuous romantically active and successful2
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