Check out this article, linked by closetpuritan at Shapely Prose, and this paper, linked by Ang on the same thread. Even some of our most closely held beliefs about what is “innate” in terms of attraction are open to question.

Anyone who is still willing to claim at this point that preferences for mates who are thin (tall, “proportionate,” etc. etc.) are hardwired and immutable since time immemorial must simply enjoy reveling in their own ignorance (note, this is NOT me saying that there aren’t biological underpinnings for why we select mates, or even that it might not be interesting for researchers to look into this… it’s just that it is NOT SCIENCE to look at societal preferences or your own personal preference and then go digging around for reasons why these preferences must be “hardwired”). I can see no other explanation.

I will try to head off one tiresome line of argument by saying that the idea that we think everyone should be forced to be attracted to fat women is a straw nonstarter. Still, it is hilarious how often this claim comes up in discussions about mate preference. It has been said many times before, but I don’t care who you want to sleep with, OK? I actually don’t want to sleep with you if you aren’t into me. I just don’t want you to make up fake science about why your preferences are “correct.” The concept of preferences being “correct” is nonsensical anyway.

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