Men now have yet another advantage over women. As if higher pay and peeing standing up wasn’t enough, now they can supposedly tell if someone will cheat just by looking at her.
A new study published in PLOS-One suggests that by comparing photographs of two unfamiliar women, men are able to tell how faithful a woman was just by looking at her. It turns out that men have some extra spidey-sense that helps them to identify a possible cheater.
The study recruited over 100 college-aged men from the University of Western Australia to take part in a series of experiments led by Dr. Samantha Leivers. Dr. Leivers was looking for evidence that men (through evolution) have an ability to access a woman’s likely faithfulness.
Participants were given 17 cards, each with two photographs of separate women on them — one of the women had cheated on a partner at least twice in the past, and the other woman had always been faithful.
The men were asked to judge which woman in each pair was likely to be more faithful. This forced choice task was carried out twice with different groups of men.
The researchers found that just by looking at the women’s faces, the men’s judgments on faithfulness were accurate 55 to 59 percent of the time. Since anyone asked to choose between two things will choose correctly 50 percent of the time, Dr. Leivers said that this level of accuracy was “statistically significant, but modest.”
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“We don’t expect them to be 100 percent accurate when they’re literally just looking at someone’s face for a few seconds,” Dr. Leivers said. “The fact that they’re showing any accuracy from this limited information is pretty cool.”
Could evolution be the cause of this new ability? According to Dr. Leivers, the findings from the study provide some evidence that human males have developed to prevent cuckoldry by distinguishing women who are more likely to be unfaithful in a relationship.
“Due to the significant fitness cost associated with cuckoldry, it would be adaptive for men to have evolved the ability to predict or detect unfaithfulness in a potential partner,” the researchers wrote.
Women aren’t the only ones who cheat. I hope that one day, females of the human race develop this ability to see if men are faithful or not, too.