What is this?

This is the blog for the Psychology of Attractiveness Podcast, a monthly science show that covers the most interesting and cutting edge research on the psychology of attraction and relationships.

The podcast is produced by Dr. Rob Burriss, a research fellow at Northumbria University in Newcastle, UK.

If you prefer to read rather than listen, you can find a text version of the podcast here.

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

August 2011: Carin Perilloux on avoiding sexual assault

The risk factors for rape: is sexual assault indiscriminate or are some women at greater risk than others? I speak with Carin Perilloux to find out. Also this month, can a conservative fall for a liberal, or is the bedroom a politics-free zone? And how exercising with the opposite sex bewilders your biochemistry.

Download the MP3

The Slut Walks that were held worldwide earlier this year demonstrate that advice about how women might avoid sexual assault is often unwelcome, especially if it focuses on changing women's behaviour. However, as Carin Perilloux told me in this month's interview, "it should be presented as 'here is all the information; you're educated women, you can make your own choices, you decide what you want to do.'" Listen in to discover more about Carin's research on the risk factors for rape.

The trailer for Politics of Love, a romcom set during the 2008 presidential campaign which is currently enjoying a very, very limited release. Coincidentally enough, political scientist Casey Klofstad published research this month suggesting that politics might be important for long-term couples, but that very few people advertise their political predilections when seeking a partner.

The articles covered in the show:

Felson, R. B., & Cundiff, P. R. (in press). Age and sexual assault during robberies. Evolution and Human Behavior. Read summary

Perilloux, C., Duntley, J. D., & Buss, D. M. (2011). Susceptibility to sexual victimization and women’s mating strategies. Personality and Individual Differences, 51, 783-786. Read summary

Miller, S. L., Maner, J. K., & McNulty, J. K. (in press). Adaptive attunement to the sex of individuals at a competition: the ratio of opposite- to same-sex individuals correlates with changes in competitors' testosterone levels. Evolution and Human Behavior. Read summary

Klofstad, C. A., McDermott, R., & Hatemi, P. K. (in press). Do bedroom eyes wear political glasses? The role of politics in human mate attraction. Evolution and Human Behavior. Read summary

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

July 2011: Is physiognomy really a pseudoscience?

How the roundness of a man’s face can predict whether he’s a liar, why testosterone fuelled men don’t like helping around the house, and how a woman’s fertility influences the warmth of her personality.

Download the MP3

Physiognomy used to be considered a pseudoscience, but it's now experiencing a resurgence, thanks in part to improved methods and a more rigid application of the scientific method.

The articles covered in the show:

Haselhuhn, M. P., & Wong, E. M. (in press). Bad to the bone: facial structure predicts unethical behaviour. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B. Read summary

Pollet, T. V., van der Meij, L., Cobey, K. D., & Buunk, A. P. (2011). Testosterone levels and their associations with lifetime number of opposite sex partners and remarriage in a large sample of American elderly men and women. Hormones and Behavior, 60(1), 72-77. Read summary

Markey, P., & Markey, C. (in press). Changes in women’s interpersonal styles across the menstrual cycle. Journal of Research in Personality. Read summary