Re: the beauty myth

Patrick Powers (
10 Apr 1995 19:26:03 GMT

A recent study "showed" that computer images that were the average of
several women were considered more beautiful than the individuals involved.
I felt this study was flawed in that it was entirely possible that
averages of several images of the same subject would be considered more
beautiful than any one. A later study contradicted the results and
"showed" that some unusual features were considered more beautiful.
Both studies seemed oversimplified to me.

Taken in a historical context, modern ideals of feminine beauty are
quite atypical with an anamolous emphasis on low fat. My guess is that
fat offered a survival advantage when famine was commonplace, while
now heart disease is more the issue.

The issue of beauty exists throughout the animal kingdom, as many
creatures have distinct beauty features that clearly offer a survival
disadvantage. Though this is not clearly understood, it is believed
that such selection can lead to the extinction of a species.

In article <3ma82p$>,
Joni R Beaulieu <JRB8947@UTARLG.UTA.EDU> wrote:
>absolut skeptic ( wrote:
>: I've always wondered if the idea of beauty is biologically determined
>: or mostly culturally influenced.
>: Has any anthropologist tried to find the answer ??
>I would vote for the idea of beauty being culturally defined. Didn't
>Kroeber do a study of women's fashons and show that they were connected
>to the economy? And wasn't it Mead who did a study on gender ... tho'
>not conected to beauty, would indicate that beauty is in the eye of the
>beholder. Isn't there any recent studies? This t'would be an interesting
> Joni