Assortative mating and the evolution of desirability covariation

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12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Mate choice lies close to differential reproduction, the engine of evolution. Patterns of mate choice consequently have power to direct the course of evolution. Here we provide evidence suggesting one pattern of human mate choice—the tendency for mates to be similar in overall desirability—caused the evolution of a structure of correlations that we call the d factor. We use agent-based models to demonstrate that assortative mating causes the evolution of a positive manifold of desirability, d, such that an individual who is desirable as a mate along any one dimension tends to be desirable across all other dimensions. Further, we use a large cross-cultural sample with n = 14,478 from 45 countries around the world to show that this d-factor emerges in human samples, is a cross-cultural universal, and is patterned in a way consistent with an evolutionary history of assortative mating. Our results suggest that assortative mating can explain the evolution of a broad structure of human trait covariation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)479-491
Number of pages13
JournalEvolution and Human Behavior
Volume40
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2019
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank everyone who participated in this study as well as the research assistants who assisted in translating forms, recruiting participants, and inputting data. The work of Truong Thi Khanh Ha was supported by grants 501.01-2016.02 from the Vietnam National Foundation for Science and Technology Development (NAFOSTED). Anna Oleszkiewicz was supported by the Foundation for Polish Science (START scholarship). This study was conducted in line with project NIR ? 01201370995 ?Cross-cultural and interdisciplinary researches. Biosocial and cross-cultural analysis of models of tolerance and basic values of culture in modern society? (Marina Butovskaya and Daria Dronova). PS and AS were supported by National Science Center?Poland (2014/13/B/HS6/02644).

Funding Information:
We thank everyone who participated in this study as well as the research assistants who assisted in translating forms, recruiting participants, and inputting data. The work of Truong Thi Khanh Ha was supported by grants 501.01-2016.02 from the Vietnam National Foundation for Science and Technology Development (NAFOSTED). Anna Oleszkiewicz was supported by the Foundation for Polish Science (START scholarship). This study was conducted in line with project NIR № 01201370995 “Cross-cultural and interdisciplinary researches. Biosocial and cross-cultural analysis of models of tolerance and basic values of culture in modern society” (Marina Butovskaya and Daria Dronova).

Funding Information:
We thank everyone who participated in this study as well as the research assistants who assisted in translating forms, recruiting participants, and inputting data. The work of Truong Thi Khanh Ha was supported by grants 501.01-2016.02 from the Vietnam National Foundation for Science and Technology Development (NAFOSTED). Anna Oleszkiewicz was supported by the Foundation for Polish Science (START scholarship). This study was conducted in line with project NIR № 01201370995 “Cross-cultural and interdisciplinary researches. Biosocial and cross-cultural analysis of models of tolerance and basic values of culture in modern society” (Marina Butovskaya and Daria Dronova).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 Elsevier Inc.

Copyright:
Copyright 2019 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)

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