Etcoff synthesizes a fascinating array of scientific research and cultural analysis in support of her thesis. Psychologists find that babies stare significantly longer at the faces adults find appealing, while the mothers of "attractive" babies display more intense bonding behaviors. The symmetrical face of average proportions may have become the optimal design because of evolutionary pressures operating against population extremes. Gentlemen may prefer blondes not so much for their hair color as for the fairness of their skin--which makes it easier to detect the flush of sexual excitement. And high heels accentuate a woman's breasts and buttocks, signaling fertility. Is beauty programmed into our brain circuits as a proxy for health and youth? In marked contrast to other writers like Naomi Wolf (The Beauty Myth), Etcoff argues that it is, noting, "Rather than denigrate one source of women's power, it would seem far more useful for feminists to attempt to elevate all sources of women's power." --Patrizia DiLucchio --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
I would recommend this book if the topic interests you.
Firstly, Dr. Etcoff opens her book with a reference to Naomi Wolf; however, her interpretation of The Beauty Myth is deeply flawed, as is much of the book.
Instead, she claims that beauty exists beyond personal preference, and offers evidence that our "love of beauty is deeply rooted in our biology."
This is very much a biological determinist view of sexual attractiveness. More and more, we are seeing that attractiveness is much more cultural, than most people think. Read morePublished 25 days ago by Sean Dial
This book came out in the year 2000 and is peppered with references to 90s models. Ultimately, it became quite repetitive to me - we get it, people are geared toward rewarding... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Lalelilolu
Nancy Etcoff's "Survival of the Prettiest" argues that beauty is not a social construct but that human beings are hardwired to recognize people and things as beautiful. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Billie Pritchett
Although this movie has a solid plot and narrative rhythm, it is the line up of Hollywood megastars that carry its weight. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Shai
Contrary to what many people think there are certain features of the human body and face that have always been considered attractive, in all cultures. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Neuron
Love this! Informative and so very interesting. I highly recommend this book!Published 7 months ago by Neva
This book was well written for anyone who has any interest in the topic. As a non-expert, I was able to understand Etcoff's explanations.Published 13 months ago by kate
a book that combines erudition, sharp observation, and a quirky sense of humor. not just stimulating but also amusing, but never cheap or populist. too good a read.Published 16 months ago by Lin Liu
Are you a female? Read this book. Favorite quote " Every Woman finds herself , without her consent, entered into a beauty contest". Read morePublished 16 months ago by Nancy White