19 June 2008

"Why women really do love self-obsessed psychopaths"

I expected better from the Independent, and particularly from its "science editor"! (for full article click on the headline above)

"Women might claim they want caring, thoughtful types but scientists have discovered what they really want – self-obsessed, lying psychopaths.

A study has found that men with the "dark triad" of traits – narcissism, thrill- seeking and deceitfulness – are likely to have a larger number of sexual affairs.

Peter Jonason, of New Mexico University in Las Cruces, believes that these traits may have an innate, genetic component that explains why some men seem unable to stop themselves behaving badly."

Even when we ignore the dodgy "science" (Mr Jonason has foolishly failed to patent this "dirty rotten scoundrel" gene which he claims exists), the claim is simply that men with psychopathic tendencies are more likely to go out looking for affairs, which to my mind simply makes it more statistically likely that such men have affairs, (as the other chaps are at home with their families or are happy going about their business and not trying to seduce women left, right and centre).

Clearly, there is no evidence at all that "women" (which implies of course, "all women"...we are a homogenous group, after all) seek out these men. And of course it is not even considered that the women with whom these men have affairs may also be self-obsessed, lying psychopaths, which would explain how the men's "strategy" appears to be so successful in the first place...


Andrew Clarke said...

Your comment on this is good. I've read the same report, in Australia, and what you say sounds right altogether. Getting involved in sexual affairs is NOT proof in either gender of character merit. Being promiscuous could indicate a lack of commitment.

Maria de Ventadorm said...

Your comment on this is good. They pass for "science" what is only a justification of a social organization based on the man as a ruler and the woman as a slave. However, I feel relieve when I see comments as yours.

Lauren said...

What a horribly done "scientific study" that is. It really bothers me that people still try to attribute what is so obviously a result of socialization to biology, as if even that can justify the patriarchal and misogynistic values that continue to govern our society. I should've stopped reading that article after the mention of this supposed "innate, genetic component that explains why some men seem unable to stop themselves behaving badly." Your commentary, though, was spot on.