WVU PSYC 251 - Looking for Love (6 pages)

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Looking for Love

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Looking for Love In social psychology there are three major theories on how attraction operates evolutionary theory social exchange theory and equity theory Aronson Wilson Akert 2010 pp 299 300 304 307 Looking through personal ads on Craigslist one can find people trying to appeal to others from each of the three proposed methods For example one personal ad posted on April 2nd 2014 labeled Want To Try a THIN Woman for a Change strongly demonstrates the principles of social exchange theory Want to try 2014 By focusing on what this fifty year old man requests in a potential partner thinness all kinds of sex a lack of long term commitment and self confidence and comparing it to what he states that he has to offer an average sized body and acceptance of various looks breast sizes ages marital statuses and races a reader can see that this man is trying to make a bargain that is clearly in his favor The man is requesting what many would think of as an ideal woman while offering himself an average man which fits well with the principles of social exchange theory wherein a person works to get the most bang for his or her buck Aronson et al 2010 pp 299 300 Social exchange theory holds that in essence a person weighs what he perceives as the pros of the relationship with what he perceives as the cons and judges the relationship against his perception of how good a relationship he deserves Aronson et al 2010 p 300 In this case the man s pros are a thin body no hang ups about appearance and a willingness to engage in various sex activities until he receives at least one reply and gets to know a woman he won t be able to judge the quality of the relationship or to compare it to what he thinks he deserves If social exchange theory holds true and his first offer holds all of his desired properties with little to no costs to him the man will stay in a relationship with the woman assuming his desire for thinness continues 1 If a woman had written this ad instead of a man still



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