Reactions to eye contact initiated by physically attractive and unattractive men and women

Marilyn Rall1, Abbie Greenspan2, Ellen Neidich2
1Brooklyn College of the City University of New York, United States
2Brooklyn College, United States
Cite this article:  Rall, M., Greenspan, A., & Neidich, E. (1984). Reactions to eye contact initiated by physically attractive and unattractive men and women. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 12(1), 103-110.

Volume 12 Issue 1 | e435 | Published: February 1984 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.1984.12.1.103

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The effects of the attractiveness and the sex of an initiator of eye contact were studied by presenting 93 subjects with same-sex pairs of relatively attractive and relatively unattractive confederates. During a three-minute period one of the confederates gazed continuously at the subject while the other looked away. Five 2 x 2 x 2 ANOVA's were computed for the number of reciprocated eye gazes and subjects' written ratings of the confederates. Contrary to previous research, results indicated that the unattractive person became more liked when not gazing. It was also found that the only situation in which gazing increased liking was when an attractive male confederate gazed at a female subject. The findings are discussed in terms of traditional sex-role norms.
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