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PSYCH 101 Unit X Social Psychology (Dating)

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University of Waterloo
Richard Ennis

PSYCH 101  Social Psychology: Dating The Dating Market Place: • Men tend to seek women who are attractive, youthful, and fertile o Women tend to be willing to offer themselves as being attractive, youthful, and fertile • Women tend to seek men who are masculine, mature, and affluent o Men tend to be willing to offer themselves as being committed (instead of masculine), mature, and affluent Evolution of Dating: 1) Inclusive Fitness: • The basic motive of evolution – to pass on our genes • Deemed as a biological imperative, something that must be successful in order for you to pass on your genes • Three things are needed to be successful: o You must survive to sexual maturity o You must then be able to procreate o You must then be able to raise your offspring and get them to sexual maturity 2) Optimal Strategies to Fulfill the Biological Imperative: • Relative to the men: o Genetic packet: sperm o Availability of genetic packet: millions per minute o Life supply: infinite o Optimal strategy:  Based on this notion, the optimal strategy should theoretically be to have as many partners as possible and to be opportunistic • Relative to women: o Genetic packet: ova (egg) o Availability of the genetic packet: 1 per month o Life supply: approximately 400 months, minus 9 for each success (if she is pregnant) o Optimal strategy:  Based on this notion, the optimal strategy should theoretically be to get the best possible partner, and therefore be very selective when it comes to male partners • However, we will find that for men, the strategy does not work. Women tend to be highly selective, and a male who projects himself as being unfaithful generally is not as successful in the long run. 3) The Family Option: A Social Exchange • Men abandon the opportunistic strategy in favour of paternal investment • Women provide sexual exclusivity and men gain paternal certainty in knowing that the child is his (ideally)
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