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PSYC 2120 Chapter 9.docx

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PSYC 2120
Irwin Silverman

PSYC 2120 Chapter 9: Interpersonal attractions Major antecedents of attraction - Propinquity effect, the finding that the more we see and interact with people, the more likely they are to become our friends - The propinquity effect works because of familiarity, or the mere exposure effect, which is the finding that the more exposure we have to a stimulus, the more we like it - Also familiarity can occur without physical exposure. These days strangers can get to know each other through electronic mail and computer chat rooms - Similarity, the match between our interest, background, attitudes, and values and those of the other person - Complementarity, attraction to people who are opposite to us - Although it has been said that opposites attract, research evidence proves that it is similarity that draws people together - We tend to think that people who are similar to us will be inclined to like us. They provide us with important social validation for similar characteristics and beliefs. They provide us with feeling that we are right. - When someone disagrees with us on important issues, we tend not to like the person. In addition to feeling validated, we are more likely to feel understood by those who are similar to us - Thus, the desire to be liked, understood, and validated, as well as the desire to have enjoyable interactions, play a role in boosting the attractiveness of a likeminded person and diminishing the attractiveness of someone who is dissimilar - Reciprocal liking, liking someone who likes us in return, is one of the prime determinants of interpersonal attraction. However, people with negative self concepts tend to be skeptical about others actually liking them and therefore do not necessarily reciprocate liking - Though people are reluctant to admit it, physical attractiveness also plays an important role - The “what is beautiful is good” stereotype indicates that people assume that physical attractiveness is associated with other desirable traits - Misattribution of arousal, whereby people make mistaken inferences about what is causing them to feel the way they do Forming close relationships - There probably isn’t a single, simple definition of love because love comes in many forms - Companionate love is defined as the feelings of intimacy and affection we feel toward someone with whom our lives are deeply intertwined. Such as close friendships or familial relationships, or in sexual relationships, where they experience feelings of intimacy but not a great deal of heat and passion - Passionate love involves an intense longing for another person - Ordinary people’s definitions of love include both companionate and passionate love - Although love is universal, there are gender and cultural differences in the definition and experience of love - Men hold a more romantic, passionate view of love than do women, although more recent research suggests that both women and men place the greatest emphasis on companionate love - People who live in individualist cultures are more likely to emphasize passionate love than are people who live in collectivist cultures, where companionate love is valued Why do we love? - Evolutionary approach, an approach derived from evolutionary biology that states that men and women are attracted to different characteristics in each other. Men are attracted by women’s appearance; women are attracted by men’s resources, because this maximizes their reproductive success - The evolutionary approach takes the long view, how people act today is based on behaviour patterns that evolved from our species’ hominid past - Another theory of love also focuses on the past, but on the more recent past; attachment theory states that our behaviour in adult relationship is based on our experiences as infants with our parents or caregivers - The attachment styles states that the kinds o
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