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Beauty Lies in the Eye of the Beholder

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Beauty Lies in the Eye of the Beholder

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  • April 15, 2013
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McNulty, J., Neff, L., Karney, B. (2008). Journal of Family Psychology. Beyond Initial Attraction: Physical Attractiveness in Newlywed Marriage, 22(1), 135-143.

“Beauty lies in the eye of the beholder”. A famous statement that normally holds true. However, how long will this beauty last in the beholder’s eye? Will physical appearance affect a relationship over time as the relationship deepens and develops? A study was conducted by James K. McNulty, Lisa A. Neff, and Benjamin R. Karney attempting to answer how physical appearances continue to affect established relationship. The study was published in the “Journal of Family Psychology” in 2008 titled Beyond Initial Attraction: Physical Attractiveness in Newlywed Marriage.

The primary reason for the study was to expand on prior studies of physical attractiveness which suggested that physical attractiveness should be connected with more positive outcomes in marriage. Apparently, many studies of physical attractiveness came about to support or over- throw two poets recognition on the period of physical attractiveness. Poet John Keats believes that the benefits of beauty are everlasting while poet G.B. Shaw believes that beauty is destined to fade over time. Different theories were also taken into consideration. Equity and similarity theories predict that attractiveness should be connected with greater levels of satisfaction and vice versa. Evolutionary perspectives and normative resource theories suggest that the gender of the more attractive partner should play an important role in determining the effects of different attractiveness. The author had cited clear review of literature and the problem was clearly visible to the average reader why the researchers felt this study needed to be done. With that said, this research tested hypothesis about whether physical attractiveness continues to influence relationships after marriage or fade with time and experience.

The focus of the study was to obtain...