Luberti

Do Same-Sex Peers’ Attractiveness and Income Affect Socio-Political Attitudes? Psychological Responses to Mating Market Competition

Luberti, F. (UNSW Sydney), Blake, K. (UNSW Sydney), Brooks. R. (UNSW Sydney)

Socio-political attitudes, such as preferences for progressive or conservative social norms, markedly vary among individuals. Here we investigated the extent to which these attitudes are influenced by two characteristics of same-sex peers in a person’s environment: their attractiveness and income. In Study 1 (N = 151 women and 229 men), a between-subjects design randomly allocated single participants to experimental conditions where the same-sex peers in their local county were attractive, average-looking, or unattractive, or to a control group. In Study 2 (N = 173 women and 234 men), a between-subjects design randomly allocated single participants to experimental conditions where the same-sex peers in their local county had high incomes, average incomes, or low incomes, or again to a control group. Results showed that same-sex peers’ attractiveness influenced women’s, but not men’s, attitudes towards benevolent sexism and traditional family values. Same-sex peers’ income affected both men’s attitudes towards wealth redistribution, and women’s attitudes towards traditional family values. We interpret these results in light of the costs and benefits of holding particular socio-political attitudes, given the degree of romantic competition in the local mating market.

f.luberti@unsw.edu.au

Twitter: @francescarlub

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Reconciling Nature and Nurture Symposium