bims-chumac Biomed News
on Context effects on human mate choice
Issue of 2020‒11‒15
three papers selected by
Jay Dixit
Storytelling.NYC


  1. PLoS One. 2020 ;15(11): e0241571
    Ghaznavi C, Sakamoto H, Nomura S, Kubota A, Yoneoka D, Shibuya K, Ueda P.
      BACKGROUND: It has been suggested that an increasing proportion of young adults in Japan have lost interest in romantic relationships, a phenomenon termed "herbivorization". We assessed trends in heterosexual relationship status and self-reported interest in heterosexual romantic relationships in nationally representative data.METHODS: We used data from seven rounds of the National Fertility Survey (1987-2015) and included adults aged 18-39 years (18-34 years in the 1987 survey; sample size 11,683-17,675). Current heterosexual relationship status (married; unmarried but in a relationship; single) was estimated by sex, age group and survey year, with singles further categorized into those reporting interest vs. no interest in heterosexual romantic relationships. Information about same-sex relationships were not available.
    RESULTS: Between 1992 and 2015, the age-standardized proportion of 18-39-year-old Japanese adults who were single had increased steadily, from 27.4 to 40.7% among women and from 40.3 to 50.8% among men. This increase was largely driven by decreases in the proportion of married women aged 25-39 years and men aged 30-39 years, while those in a relationship had increased only slightly for women and remained stable for men. By 2015, the proportion of single women was 30.2% in those aged 30-34 years and 24.4% in those aged 35-39 years. The corresponding numbers for men were 39.3% and 32.4%. Around half of the singles (21.4% of all women and 25.1% of all men aged 18-39 years) reported that they had no interest in heterosexual romantic relationships. Single women and men who reported no interest in romantic relationships had lower income and educational levels and were less likely to have regular employment compared to those who reported such an interest.
    CONCLUSIONS: In this analysis of heterosexual relationships in nationally representative data from Japan, singlehood among young adults had steadily increased over the last three decades. In 2015 around one in four women and one in three men in their thirties were unmarried and not in a heterosexual relationship. Half of the singles reported no interest in romantic relationships and these women and men had lower income and educational levels and were less likely to have regular employment.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0241571
  2. Evol Psychol. 2020 Oct-Dec;18(4):18(4): 1474704920972051
    Ghanbarian E, Hajhosseini M, Mikani M, Mahmoudpour A.
      Differentiation of self refers to the capacity of individuals to manage their emotions, remain thoughtful in strong emotional experiences, and the ability to experience intimacy and independence in relationships. Individual differences in differentiation of self may influence the performance of mate retention behaviors. Because poorly differentiated individuals find separation and rejection unbearable and anxiety-provoking, we hypothesized that different levels of differentiation is related to different strategies of mate retention behaviors. However, little empirical attention has been given to the relationship between differentiation of self and mate retention behaviors, particularly in non-individualistic cultures. We aimed to investigate the mediating role of communication patterns in the relationship between differentiation of self and mate retention behaviors. The sample included 282 married individuals from Community Centers (some neighborhoods in Tehran, Iran). The results supported the associations between mate retention behaviors and differentiation of self, and also showed that communication patterns mediate this relationship. This study improves our understanding of differentiation of self and mate retention behaviors in the context of long-term committed relationships from an evolutionary psychological perspective.
    Keywords:  Iran; communication patterns; differentiation of self; evolutionary psychology; mate retention
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1177/1474704920972051
  3. J Pers Soc Psychol. 2020 Nov 12.
    Yang Z, Hung IW.
      The authors propose that an individual's disposition for perspective taking may be facilitated by creative thinking, which involves a cognitive procedure with shifting angles and generating multiple solutions to a problem. Specifically, engaging in creative thinking in an incidental situation may activate a general procedure of changing perspectives, giving rise to a perspective-shifting mindset, which enhances an individual's tendency to take the perspective of targets described in a subsequently encountered, unrelated message, and this consequently affects the message's impact. A pilot study shows that creativity personality is positively correlated with the tendency toward spatial and conceptual perspective taking. In addition, in various persuasive contexts that involve real donations and brand evaluations, the present research demonstrates that participants who adopted creative thinking (vs. control) were more likely to take the perspective of a target described in (a) a charity appeal, and (b) commercial messages. They were more likely to (a) make a donation, (b) evaluate a brand more favorably, and (c) ascribe characteristics of the target to the self. The hypothesized effect is moderated by the nature of the context-whether or not a shift of perspective in processing the message is required. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved).
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1037/pspa0000259