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The physiognomic basis of sexual stereotyping
Am J Psychiatry 1984;141:499-503.
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Abstract

Although it is routine for mental status reports to comment on appearance and attractiveness, there is no prevailing theory to explain the psychological impact of physical features. Two perceptual processes are proposed: nonverbal quasi-communication (counterfeit body language) and nonverbal quasi-information (spurious information). Applying this perspective to the sexual dimorphism of anatomy, clothing, and makeup, one finds that appearance fosters the belief that men and women have the personality traits that are stereotypically attributed to them, and this seems to be at the heart of physical attractiveness.

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