Men get turned on by women who look fertile. Fruitful is sexy. Or at least that’s the story we get from the popularized versions of evolutionary psychology: Men like large, firm breasts, a narrow waist, and curvy hips because it’s this combo of traits that signals high fertility.
Okay. I know plenty of men who like smaller breasts just fine. That fact alone exposes the simplemindedness of this theory.
But let’s grant the above premise. Even so, I poked a couple more gaping holes in this theory just in the time I needed to take a shower this morning. (I do my best thinking in the shower – maybe because the spray wakes up my brain, or maybe just because the kids usually leave me alone for five minutes. Too bad I can’t take my laptop in there.)
So … if fertility really determines sexual attractiveness … then:
- Why is menstruation almost universally subject to taboos? After all, it’s a necessary precondition for fertility, and as such it ought to be celebrated! Men ought to consider it sexy! And yet – it’s not just seen as totally un-sexy, we women often feel less feminine during our period.
- Why the heck would anyone consider a supermodel attractive? The theory requires curves. Most supermodels don’t have ‘em – at least not lower than their ribcage.
- Why have men historically preferred virgins? Why not prefer women who’ve already shown they can conceive and bear a child? Yes, I know that popularized ev psych paints men as competitors who want to avoid supporting another man’s spawn. But assuming a man just refuses to do that, why wouldn’t he prefer to try to impregnate a woman who’s proven her reproductive “fitness”?
Hmmm … maybe that last point explains the MILF phenomenon?
Yeah, I realize these are slightly goofy arguments. That’s what comes from accepting a goofy premise. That’s the penalty for taking seriously ideas that aren’t fruitful; they’re just plain fruity.