Gender Differences in the Motivational Processing of Facial Beauty

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Gender Differences in the Motivational Processing of Facial Beauty

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Title: Gender Differences in the Motivational Processing of Facial Beauty
Author: Chi, Won; Levy, Boaz; Lukas, Scott; Ariely, Dan; Mazar, Nina; Elman, Igor

Note: Order does not necessarily reflect citation order of authors.

Citation: Levy, Boaz, Dan Ariely, Nina Mazar, Won Chi, Scott Lukas, and Igor Elman. 2008. Gender differences in the motivational processing of facial beauty. Learning and Motivation 39(2): 136-145.
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Abstract: Gender may be involved in the motivational processing of facial beauty. This study applied a behavioral probe, known to activate brain motivational regions, to healthy heterosexual subjects. Matched samples of men and women were administered two tasks: (a) key pressing to change the viewing time of average or beautiful female or male facial images, and (b) rating the attractiveness of these images. Men expended more effort (via the key-press task) to extend the viewing time of the beautiful female faces. Women displayed similarly increased effort for beautiful male and female images, but the magnitude of this effort was substantially lower than that of men for beautiful females. Heterosexual facial attractiveness ratings were comparable in both groups. These findings demonstrate heterosexual specificity of facial motivational targets for men, but not for women. Moreover, heightened drive for the pursuit of heterosexual beauty in the face of regular valuational assessments, displayed by men, suggests a gender-specific incentive sensitization phenomenon.
Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.lmot.2007.09.002
Citable link to this page: http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:3203284

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  • FAS Scholarly Articles [7470]
    Peer reviewed scholarly articles from the Faculty of Arts and Sciences of Harvard University
 
 

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