Psychological Implications Of Interpersonal Attraction

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Introduction Human beings are the most social of social animals and the desire to be liked and accepted is very strong. This desire is forged by interaction with others, which forms interpersonal attraction and judgement of beauty. There are several reasons that could explain why interpersonal attraction occurs in social settings. Repeated exposure to a certain stimulus, allows individuals to develop stronger impressions and greater familiarity towards the stimulus, promoting interpersonal attraction (Zajonc, 1968), while similarity between individuals enhances initial attraction (Vinacke, Shannon, Palazzo & Balsavage, 1988), and allows social validation (Byrne, 1971). Physical attractiveness, one of the most important determinants of interpersonal attraction is often seen as a sign of fertility, strength, or health (Buss, 1999; Thornhill, 1998). Physical attractiveness individuals has been shown to be treated preferentially and more positively to the extent that it influence outcomes of interpersonal interactions (Rhode, 2010), where attractive employees get paid with higher wages (Frieze, Olson & Russell, 1991), and attractive criminals were given lighter sentences (Stewart, 1980). This phenomenon could be explained by the “Halo Effect” (Nisbett, & Wilson, 1977), where evaluations of one attribute of a person are generalized to influence evaluations of other attributes. In the landmark paper ‘‘What Is Beautiful Is Good,’’ written by Dion, Berscheid and Walster (1972)
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