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‘WHAT IS BEAUTIFUL IS LOVED’: PHYSICAL ATTRACTIVENESS IN LOVE RELATIONSHIPS IN A REPRESENTATIVE SAMPLE

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Abstract:

From many theoretical standpoints (behaviorist, cognitive, socio-biological, psychodynamic, socialization) it is predictable that Physical Attractiveness of the Other person (PAO) is actually more important in the loving relationships than people usually believe. To verify the working hypotheses derived from this general one, a questionnaire was administered in individual interviews, to a representative sample (n=1949) of the Spanish population. Data about perceived physical attractiveness by the interviewee in his/her partner, and some variables relevant to loving relationships, were collected. Results indicate that PAO is the principal factor in sporadic relationships, and influences the manner of falling in love. It is also important in stable relationships. In addition, PAO is linked both to feelings and thoughts associated with love (intimacy, passion, commitment, idealization) and to satisfaction with the relationship.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2224/sbp.2000.28.3.207

Publication date: January 1, 2000

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