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A facial attractiveness account of gender asymmetries in interracial marriage

Lewis, Michael Bevan 2012. A facial attractiveness account of gender asymmetries in interracial marriage. PLoS ONE 7 (2) , e31703. 10.1371/journal.pone.0031703

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Abstract

Background In the US and UK, more Black men are married to White women than vice versa and there are more White men married to Asian women than vice versa. Models of interracial marriage, based on the exchange of racial status for other capital, cannot explain these asymmetries. A new explanation is offered based on the relative perceived facial attractiveness of the different race-by-gender groups. Method and Findings This explanation was tested using a survey of perceived facial attractiveness. This found that Black males are perceived as more attractive than White or East Asian males whereas among females, it is the East Asians that are perceived as most attractive on average. Conclusions Incorporating these attractiveness patterns into the model of marriage decisions produces asymmetries in interracial marriage similar to those in the observed data in terms of direction and relative size. This model does not require differences in status between races nor different strategies based on gender. Predictions are also generated regarding the relative attractiveness of those engaging in interracial marriage.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
Publisher: PLoS
ISSN: 1932-6203
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 03:52
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/28235

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