here’s an interesting post from an anthro professor regarding a study done on ovulation in female humans and display (studied through shopping habits). the results of the study found that women bought sexier clothing when they were ovulating as opposed to when they were not.
however, there were some problems with the research. for one, as the anthro prof rightly points out, because of the way the researchers checked the hormone levels of the women in the study, they might have erroneously included some women who were not ovulating. oops. also, the study group was composed of, as per usual, western college students and they might not be 100% representative of all women on the planet.
however, as the anthro prof herself admitted:
“I have noticed more cycle-related variation in emotion [since she had a baby]. In particular, my patience and tolerance for rude behavior, and my tendency to cry sentimentally at even the lamest greeting card, skyrocket in my premenstrual phase. I already have low tolerance for rudeness, and I already cry easily. But something about progesterone decline — which is a normal process towards the end of ovulatory cycles — seems to make it harder for me to repress these behaviors in order to fit in culturally with those around me.
“I tell this to you to say, I don’t doubt that hormones, and hormonal variation through the cycle, plays some role in variation in female behavior and emotion.”
hormonal variation plays some role in female behavior and emotion?! gimme a break. hormonal variation plays a HUGE role in female behavior and emotion! not that there’s anything wrong with that. (~_^) that’s just how it works.
good lord. people really have to get over the notion that humans are “rational actors” and come to terms with the fact that we are just a bunch o’ animals like the rest of the creatures on this planet. we (some of us) do have some capacity for rational thought, but most people run around most of them time operating on automatic pilot. they just feel like they’re the ones making all the decisions. that, however, is (prolly) mostly an illusion.
also, the anthro prof seems kinda stuck on the idea that western women are “objectified.” i get the impression (maybe i’m wrong) that she doesn’t really like that idea, either. she suggests that western women buy more sexy clothes due to this objectification process. it’s something cultural, i guess. i dunno.
well, maybe. but plenty of women i have known like to be looked at and admired (by the right guys) — kinda. like. objects. and men apparently see scantily clad women as objects — in their brains, that is. not that there’s anything wrong with that! (~_^) and should we be surprised? a man sees a sexy woman and “thinks” (or reacts subconsciously) — “i’d like to get my hands on that|her!” so what? that doesn’t mean that all men always think of women as objects. just on one, very basic, biological level they do.
and, so, some women in the world behave accordingly. what’s the big deal?
these behaviors are just the surface expressions of the biological drives that work on us to get us to reproduce, that’s all.
p.s. – here’s some other research that found that women “dress to impress” when they’re ovulating.
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