Preference for cute infants does not depend on their ethnicity or species: Evidence from hypothetical adoption and donation paradigms

Golle, Jessika Kessy; Probst, Fabian; Mast, Fred; Lobmaier, Janek (2015). Preference for cute infants does not depend on their ethnicity or species: Evidence from hypothetical adoption and donation paradigms. PLoS ONE, 10(4), e0121554. Public Library of Science 10.1371/journal.pone.0121554

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Results of previous work suggest a preference of adult observers for cute compared to less cute infants. In Study 1 we investigated whether the preference for cute infants depends on the ethnicity and species of the infant. We simultaneously presented two faces (one cute and one less cute) and asked Caucasian participants to choose the infant to whom they would rather give a toy (Task 1) and which infant they would rather adopt (Task 2). The infants were Caucasian or African human babies, or dog puppies. For all face categories and in both tasks we found a strong preference for cute infants. A possible reason for preferring cute infants may be that cute infants look healthier than less cute infants. To investigate whether cuteness is associated with the assessment of health we conducted Study 2. Faces of Caucasian and African infants and dog puppies were rated for cuteness and health. The findings revealed a significant relationship between health and cuteness evaluation across all stimuli. We suggest that one reason why cute infants are preferred might be because they are perceived as being healthier.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology
07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology > Cognitive Psychology, Perception and Methodology
10 Strategic Research Centers > Center for Cognition, Learning and Memory (CCLM)
07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology > Cognitive Psychology, Perception and Methodology > Biologische Psychologie (SNF)

UniBE Contributor:

Golle, Jessika Kessy; Probst, Fabian; Mast, Fred and Lobmaier, Janek

Subjects:

100 Philosophy > 150 Psychology

ISSN:

1932-6203

Publisher:

Public Library of Science

Funders:

[4] Swiss National Science Foundation

Language:

English

Submitter:

Janek Lobmaier

Date Deposited:

24 Mar 2015 15:22

Last Modified:

21 Jul 2017 10:39

Publisher DOI:

10.1371/journal.pone.0121554

PubMed ID:

25844526

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.65169

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/65169

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