University of Worcester Worcester Research and Publications

Are Everyday Heroic or Altruistic Acts More Desirable in Human Mate Choice?

Farrelly, Daniel ORCID:, Curley, Briar and Bhogal, Manpal Singh (2023) Are Everyday Heroic or Altruistic Acts More Desirable in Human Mate Choice? Letters on Evolutionary Behavioral Science, 14 (1). pp. 18-21. ISSN 1884-927X

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Previous research has shown that heroic acts are valued traits in human mate choice, due to their desirability particularly for long term partners. There is however inconsistency as to whether heroism is a more valued trait than more general forms of altruism, or if both signal the same underlying desired trait in partners. To assess this, the current study looked to directly compare the desirability of heroic and altruistic acts when both are options that individuals may choose. Here, both male and female participants were provided with descriptions of hypothetical individuals who chose to behave either heroically or altruistically in the same everyday scenario, and asked to rate their desirability for both short and long term relationships. It was found that although both heroic and altruistic individuals were considered more desirable for long term than short term relationships, there were no differences in the ratings of heroic and altruistic acts nor were there any sex differences. Accordingly it is concluded that heroism is not a distinct trait in mate choice than altruism when potential confounding factors are controlled for, and both signal the actor’s underlying prosocial personality characteristic that is valued in long term relationship for both men and women.

Item Type: Article
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Copyright (c) 2023 Daniel Farrelly, Briar Curley, Manpal Singh Bhogal

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Uncontrolled Discrete Keywords: heroism, altruism, mate choice, relationship length, desirability
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Divisions: College of Business, Psychology and Sport > School of Psychology
Depositing User: Daniel Farrelly
Date Deposited: 06 Apr 2023 11:10
Last Modified: 06 Apr 2023 11:11

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