Ask A Genius 323 – Mating Strategies (3)
October 17, 2017
[Beginning of recorded material]
Rick Rosner: But there will always be a novelty. It won’t signify much. You know, fashion exists to perpetuate itself via novelty. Sometimes it reflects a something maybe important about the culture, the way that fashion has shifted to allow for heavier people, the way that body consciousness in fashion has shifted in America and the rest of the world over the past 20 years to accommodate people who are on average much heavier than they were in the ‘70s.
But you know, fashion is fashion. It shifts around to give people an excuse to buy new stuff. And I’ve read arguments that say that trends in fashion have been replaced by an omnivorousness in fashion where anything that worked in the past can now be, you know, seen as fashion now, that somebody could dress as they dressed 20, 25 years ago, walk down the street without drawing any attention because we now live in an era of anythingness.
It may be due to increased, just you know, just increased information, that if you can see all of the fashion, all of the history of fashion laid out in front of you just by clicking around on the internet, then there’s less, you know, era-wise or now wise enforcement of fashion rules, because people have more information.
Similarly, in terms of competing for mates, there may be more of an anything goes because people have more information. And more access to all sorts of different people via social media. So you asked… who’s going to be successful in the future at sexual—at attracting mates?
One new, I don’t know if it’s new, but it certainly, more important now than in the past, is people who accept all body types. People don’t apply rigorously, the rigorous physical standards of sexual attractiveness of the past will do well now and into the future in which you know, we’re growing more accepting of people as they are now. That is the… when I was growing up, might get in the weeds here but… you know, not that—throughout most of the 20th century, there were severe constraints on who was allowed to have sex.
Married people were allowed to have sex. People who took themselves out of the realm of social approval, of course, could have sex, which meant like prostitutes. There was a huge prostitution culture in the US in the first half of the 20th century. But beyond that, people weren’t supposed to have sex.
You had to, I mean there were times when people had sex, like World War II, standards were—nobody, it wasn’t overt, standards weren’t overtly low, sexual prohibitions weren’t overtly lowered but people, you know, about to go off to maybe die, yeah, there was a lot of people hooking up before they went off to battle and such.
There was still urgency. But there were still huge prohibitions on sex outside of wedlock. Now that you know, most of that is eroded. And eroding along with that are standards about who’s attractive. Rigid standards of sexual fitness. And people who are able to see the beauty in everyone are going to—and who want to have sex with people are going to be offered greater opportunities.
That’s about it.
[End of recorded material]
American Television Writer
Scott Douglas Jacobsen
Editor-in-Chief, In-Sight Publishing
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