How Well Do Men's Faces and Voices Index Mate Quality and Dominance?

Leslie M. Doll, Alexander K. Hill, Michelle A. Rotella, Rodrigo A. Cárdenas, Lisa L.M. Welling, John R. Wheatley, David A. Puts

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations

Abstract

Previous studies have used self-ratings or strangers' ratings to assess men's attractiveness and dominance, attributes that have likely affected men's access to mates throughout human evolution. However, attractiveness and dominance include more than isolated impressions; they incorporate knowledge gained through social interaction. We tested whether dominance and attractiveness assessed by acquaintances can be predicted from (1) strangers' ratings made from facial photographs and vocal clips and (2) self-ratings. Two university social fraternities, their socially affiliated sororities, and independent raters evaluated men's short- and long-term attractiveness, fighting ability, and leadership ability. Ratings made by unfamiliar men using faces, but not voices, predicted acquaintance-rated fighting and leadership ability, whereas ratings made by unfamiliar women from faces and voices predicted acquaintance-rated short- and long-term attractiveness. Except for leadership, self-ratings aligned with peers' evaluations. These findings support the conclusion that faces and voices provide valuable information about dominance and mate quality.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)200-212
Number of pages13
JournalHuman Nature
Volume25
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Anthropology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'How Well Do Men's Faces and Voices Index Mate Quality and Dominance?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this