ANT2301- Professor Thomas
Concealed Ovulation to Marriage Practices
50 Multiple Choice
• What is Concealed Ovulation?
o The exact timing of female ovulation (able to get pregnant) is unknown to both
the male and female of species. Humans have concealed ovulation
• What is Estrus?
o Marked by increases in female sexual behavior and attractiveness at the period
of highest fertility just before ovulation. Period of genital swelling. When one is
• What are these three things? Receptivity, Proceptivity, Attractiveness
o Receptivity: readiness to copulate when solicited by a male. No difference b/w
humans and primates.
o Proceptivity: active encouragement and solicitations by females to copulate.
More limited in primates during estrus.
o Attractiveness: females become sexually exciting to males. During estrus, males
find females attractive
• How do they differ between primates and humans?
o Receptivity has no difference between primates and humans. Proceptivity is
more limited in primates during estrus. For attractiveness, most of the female
primate menstrual cycle is characterized by sexual disinterest in males.
• What times of the months are humans Receptive, Perceptive, Attractive?
o Constant receptivity. Perceptive usually during estrus. Attractive most during
estrus. Chimps have estrus.
• Bipedalism (anytime you see a list, it’s usually a “all of the following” or “all of the
o Centralized foramen magnum
o The vertebral column has distinct S-curve
o The pelvis rotates forward in humans, becomes shorter and bowl shaped
o The femur angles inward to the knee
o The foot develops a distinct arch
o Abducted big toe, used for toe off walking
• Biomechanics: what kinds of things affect it?
o Movement of genitals to underneath the pelvis
o Need a reduction in swelling to maintain biochemical efficiency
• Visual Cue is lost. It is not an advertisement anymore
o Reducing swelling and movement of genitals = males cannot see if females are
ready to become pregnant. • Olfactory cues: we have no hair but we have hair in our armpits, genitals
o Males most often prefer a females odor during ovulation (when not on
• Know about t-shirt study (when males smell shirts of females, what stage of ovulation
was more attractive? During ovulation (follicular phase)
• Lap dancers that got the most tips were ovulating and not using contraception
• Voice changes: higher pitch (fertile phase)= more attractive
• Behavioral Theories
o Competition – concealed ovulation reduces male-male competition and
enhances cooperation among male hunters. Males cannot compete for females
that are ovulating.
o Pair-bonding – concealed ovulation enhances bond between man and woman
by making woman continuously receptive, proceptive, and attractive.
o Food sharing – Male chimps are more likely to share foo with females in estrus.
o Paternity – concealed estrus exploits male paranoia over paternity, enhances
pair bond. Used to confuse paternity and prevent infanticide
o Increased paternal care – concealed ovulation increases the chances for male
paternal care. With male care giving, the female can have children more often
and increase reproductive success
• Among the Hadza, can they smell when a female is ovulating?
o No, because they all smell like smoke.
• Males say females get pregnant right after menstruation, which is completely not right.
o Menstruation: pollution
o Males are forbidden to touch, look, go into, or repair huts, under risk of death
• Kodi: Blue Dye Fermentation
o Secret complex of female arts
o Females: Blue witches; inherited through female side of family
• Blueness is inherited, STDs are blamed on women having sex during menses
• We’re always trying to look for increased reproductive success
• Females that are ovulating prefer a more masculine face. When not ovulating, less
masculine (more feminine)
• Less masculine = better parental care
• Confer study
o Females stick to facial attraction no matter what type of relationship
o Males are more attracted to body attractiveness for short term. Facial
attractiveness for long term
• Olfactory Genetics o Everything goes away when contraception is used
• Major Histocompatibility Complex
o It’s about immune system so we share a lot of it with relatives, which is why you
don’t think they smell very good (somebody who has a different immune
• Age Factor
o Men prefer younger, Women prefer older.
o As males get older, they prefer younger and younger. Teenage males prefer
• Evolutionary Explanation
o Women reach their reproductive peak around the age of 20. Graph is peaked at
puberty and then goes down.
• A lot is based on gender roles
• Females are choosing based on resources, food, health, ambition, jobs Females value
resources more than males do
• Burger King study: Females preferred a less attractive, higher status male than an
attractive Burger King employee
• Dominance: when male was being dominant, attractiveness went up. No change in
female because it did not matter if female was submissive or dominant. Looks were the
• Parenting ability: Photos of male taking good care of kids is more attractive
• Jealousy: Males find sexual infidelity worse than females. Females find emotional
infidelity worse than males do.
• Homosexual: biggest determining factor for preferring older or younger partners if they
are searching for a feminine or masculine role (this correlates with age they are looking
o Males favor fertility a lot more than women
o Women favor intelligence a lot more than men
• Males find attractiveness more important
• Fluctuating Asymmetry: males with low FA are more symmetrical and are more
• Health: symmetrical males and females are assumed to be healthier than asymmetrical
• Composite faces are more symmetrical because you’re averaging a face.
• Koiniophilia: you want somebody that looks normal, not odd
o Idea that when sexual creatures seek a mate, they prefer that mate not to have
any unusual, peculiar features
• When we look at attractiveness, we are not necessarily just looking at the face
• Hormonal markers: testosterone makes larger cheekbones, lengthening of face etc. • Facial hair: hair growth with higher testosterone levels. Hair provides strong
social/sexual signals. Ancestry plays a role.