A number of theories about the origins of musicality have incorporated biological and social perspectives. Darwin argued that musicality evolved by sexual selection, functioning as a courtship display in reproductive partner choice. Darwin did not regard musicality as a sexually dimorphic trait, paralleling evidence that both sexes produce and enjoy music. A novel research strand examines the effect of musicality on sexual attraction by acknowledging the importance of facial attractiveness. We previously demonstrated that music varying in emotional content increases the (...) perceived attractiveness and dating desirability of opposite-sex faces only in females, compared to a silent control condition. Here, we built upon this approach by presenting the person depicted (target) as the performer of the music (prime), thus establishing a direct link. We hypothesized that musical priming would increase sexual attraction, with high-arousing music inducing the largest effect. Musical primes (25 s, piano solo music) varied in arousal and pleasantness, and targets were photos of other-sex faces of average attractiveness and with neutral expressions (2 s). Participants were 35 females and 23 males (heterosexual psychology students, single, and no hormonal contraception use) matched for musical background, mood, and liking for the music used in the experiment. After musical priming, females’ ratings of attractiveness and dating desirability increased significantly. In males, only dating desirability was significantly increased by musical priming. No specific effects of music-induced pleasantness and arousal were observed. Our results, together with other recent empirical evidence, corroborate the sexual selection hypothesis for the evolution of human musicality. (shrink)
As a cornerstone of public health, epidemiology has lately undergone substantial changes enabled by, among other factors, the use of biobank infrastructures. In biobank-related research, the return of results to participants constitutes an important and complex ethical question. In this study, we qualitatively investigated how individuals perceive the results returned following their participation in cohort studies with biobanks. In our semi-structured interviews with 31 participants of two such German studies, we observed that some participants overestimate the nature of the personal (...) information they will receive from the study. Although this misestimation does not seem to jeopardize the validity of the consent provided at recruitment, it may still represent a threat for participants’ trust in research and thus their long-term commitment, crucial for such studies. We argue that such misestimation may have ethical consequences on the principles guiding the reflection on the return of results in biobank research, i.e. autonomy, beneficence, non-maleficence and reciprocity. We suggest that shifting from the idea of directly benefiting participants through the return of research results could help focusing on benefiting society as a whole, thereby increasing research trustworthiness of population-based studies using biobanks. (shrink)
A short number of entries in Andalusi biographical sources are devoted to pious women. These women are usually described as practising the recitation of the Quran, giving alms, leading a retired life and fasting. Together with other texts, these biographies draw a picture in which a secluded life and fasting became the privileged characteristics of religious piety among Andalusi women. Fasting, in particular, could be used as a means of going beyond the limits imposed on women by Muslim orthopraxis.
Resumen: Este trabajo tiene como objetivo mostrar que el análisis sistémico aplicado a los espacios locales facilita la generación de propuestas para su desarrollo integral en el ámbito de la sostenibilidad. Los territorios están compuestos por elementos físicos y sociales que se interrelacionan y generan productos que los benefician o perjudican. Estos recursos pueden ser explotados o encontrarse ociosos por falta de actores que los desarrollen. Reaccionan ante las acciones internas y externas tanto humanas como naturales, entre las que se (...) encuentran las políticas para el desarrollo local. Para que estas políticas sean eficientes, necesitan estudios integrales que contengan una información que muestre las deficiencias estructurales, relacionales y funcionales del territorio y, con esta información, adoptar las medidas que las corrijan. Este estudio muestra que el análisis sistémico es una herramienta útil para la elaboración de estas políticas.This paper shows how system analysis applied to local spaces facilitate the generation of proposals for integral development in the field of sustainability. Regions are composed of physical and social components generating products that benefit or harm themselves. These resources can be exploited or remained idle for lack of actors to develop them. They react to internal and external actions, both human and natural. Among these actions are the policies for local development. For these policies to be efficient, they need comprehensive studies that contain information that shows the structural, relational and functional deficiencies of the territory and, with this information, adopt the necessary political actions to correct them. This study supports system analysis as an information tool for policy-making. (shrink)
Comparing mortuary rituals across 57 representative cultures extracted from the Human Relations Area Files, this paper demonstrates that kin of the deceased engage in behaviours to prepare the deceased for disposal that entail close and often prolonged contact with the contaminating corpse. At first glance, such practices are costly and lack obvious payoffs. Building on prior functionalist approaches, we present an explanation of corpse treatment that takes account of the unique adaptive challenges entailed by the death of a loved one. (...) We propose that intimate contact with the corpse provides the bereaved with extensive veridical cues of death, thereby facilitating acceleration of a grieving process that serves to recategorize the deceased as no longer a relationship partner, opening the door to relationship replacement and a return to social functioning. The benefits of exposure to such cues are tempered by the costs of exposure to cues of disease risk, a balance that in part explains the relative rarity of highly invasive mortuary practices that exacerbate the latter factor. We conclude by discussing implications of our model for contemporary mortuary practices in the developed world. (shrink)