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Strategic reactions to unfaithfulness: female self-presentation in the context of mate attraction is linked to uncertainty of paternity

Dosmukhambetova, Dina and Manstead, Antony Stephen Reid 2011. Strategic reactions to unfaithfulness: female self-presentation in the context of mate attraction is linked to uncertainty of paternity. Evolution and Human Behavior 32 (2) , pp. 106-117. 10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2010.08.006

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Abstract

People are motivated to self-present to their potential romantic partners. We hypothesized that due to the uncertainty of paternity, one of the self-presentational behaviors that human females engage in when they are motivated to attract a long-term mate is designed to communicate to prospective partners that they are likely to be faithful. In Study 1, we show that females in a long-term-romance mindset are less likely to agree to going to a concert with another female known to be unfaithful (cheater) than with a female known to have many sexual partners (player) or a non-flirtatious control female (control). Females in the long-term-romance mindset are also less willing to be the unfaithful female's friend and less willing to indicate that she is similar to them. In Study 2, we show that the effect is gender specific. In particular, we show that in the presence of a potential long-term partner, females (but not males) express more rejecting emotions towards a same-sex acquaintance who reveals a predilection to be unfaithful. These studies provide strong support for the role of uncertainty of paternity in the female self-presentational behaviors in the context of mate attraction.

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
Uncontrolled Keywords: Mate attraction ; Self-presentation ; Uncertainty of paternity ; Evolutionary psychology
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 1090-5138
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 04:01
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/30950

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