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Social Psychology

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Richard Ennis

Social Psychology - dating November 15 2012 Social exchange: Love in the Want ads Relationships are based on equal value of giving and receiving. “Sex for success” exchange. Man brings success and woman brings sexual favor to the relationship. In the 50’s to test this theory, social psych. looked at want ads in the paper. Men did seek psychical attractiveness, men did offer however some sense of security – men wanted women younger than themselves. Women who placed the ads had a mirror of this, they did offer youth and beauty and health also in return they sought commitment. Since that study, the pattern has diminished slightly because women are more secure nowadays. Dating rituals: Evolution: that theory makes evolutionary sense. Inclusive fitness = the evolutionary competition is at the gene level. We all have a biological imperative to procreate and in the interest of our species the “best” have to procreate, you must also see that offspring reach sexual maturity. (If you can’t become a grandparent than that means your biological imperative hasn’t been fulfilled.) Optimal strategies = what would be the best sexual strategy for each gender? For men: Sperm – Virtually unlimited. And there is no deduction for success. Therefore he should procreate with as many women as possible and as often as possible. (Opportunistic strategy) For women: Egg – Has one per month, and 40 years to procreate (12x40) = 480 chances. -9 months every time an egg is conceived. Therefore she should choose the best ‘mate’ and selective. She has a very finite set of genetic packets, very few opp. to produce offspring therefore she should not waste the eggs on any sperm. (Selective strategy) - Alternative plan (the family alternative) – the opportunistic strategy won’t work anymore, if men want to procreate, they must commit and help in the raising of the offspring to puberty. None of the men have paternal certainty, women do have maternal certainty. If the men do that, then they will commit in a monogamous relationship. But if they’re going to do that then the women need to choose the right male. The competition = to convince the women that they should choose them to be in a relationship with. Want a strong, protective male – bring resources. Therefore he needs to be muscular, in that world that these would indicate success. The male needs to be willing to commit and attach, male needs to be capable of emotional bonding = romantic. Testing for husband and father throughout the dating process. Dating ritual among the aps. Women choose, men don’t do the choosing. Men will want as many of the eggs as they can get, hourglass shape - according to evolutionary theory
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