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Discuss the relationship between sexual selection and human reproductive behaviour (24)

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´╗┐Discuss the Relationship between Sexual Selection and Human Reproductive Behaviour (24) Intrasexual selection, also known as mate competition is when members of one sex compete for each other. The victors have their genes passed on as they are able to mate. The trait that lead to the success is passed on. This is mainly seen between males as it enables them to secure the best female. On the other hand, intersexual selection is mate choice. It involves the preference of certain qualities. For example, if females prefer tall males, over time, there would be an increase in tall males. This preference determines the area of competition. Females must choose a male who will have high parental investment. According to the parental investment theory, men evolved a greater desire for casual sex and seek sex earlier in the relationship, these are also characteristics of short term dating. A man is more likely to impregnate a large number of women as he has an unlimited amount of gametes. ...read more.


They then asked them one of three questions: 1. Would you go on a date with me? 2. Would you go back to my apartment with me? 3. Would you have sex with me? Of the females approached, 50% agreed to go on a date, 6% to go back to his apartment and 0% to have sex. Of the males approached, 50% agreed to a date, 69% were willing to back to her apartment and 75% agreed to have sex. This provides evidence that men have evolved psychological mechanisms to ensure success in short term mating. These include a desire for sexual variety, the tendency to let a little time lapse before seeking sexual intercourse and willingness to consent to sex with strangers. Females invest heavily in offspring. As a consequence, for long term mating preferences, females tend to have high levels choosiness. This means being attracted to males who are able to invest resources in the female and her children, physically protect her and her children, show promise as a good parent and ensure minimal costs. ...read more.


Some critics have tried to explain this in terms of social power: younger women are easier to control and are therefore preferable as mates. Kenrick et al. rejected this hypothesis by finding that teenage males are most attracted to women 5 years older than them: these women are not easily controlled. In addition to this, there is gender bias in the research of short term mating. Although short term mating can be costly to females, they could also profit from this. Short term mating could be used as a means of ending a relationship with a poor quality male, or as a way of producing more genetically diverse offspring. It could also be argued that evolutionary explanations are deterministic. It assumes that men will be motivated to have a high number of sexual partners and are less inclined to a long term committed relationship, and that women are motivated by resources. This ignore the role of free will and choice that both sexes have when deciding what relationship they want. There are males that settle down with one person at an early age and females who do not settle down and have children. ...read more.

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