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Black people considered more attractive if they do this...

YOU SOUND ATTRACTIVE: Is beauty in the EAR of the beholder?

A NEW study has discovered some startling data about how others perceive black beauty.

A recent analysis by researcher Robert L. Reece in the US found that people often view black people as more attractive if they identify as multi-racial.

The study results had absolutely nothing to do one’s appearance; subjects simply had to state they were from mixed racial backgrounds, after which respondents gave them more points for being attractive.

So does this mean that beauty is in the ear of the beholder, rather than the eyes?

“Being exotic is a compelling idea,” Reece told the Duke Research blog. “So people are attracted to a certain type of difference. It’s also partially just racism — the notion that Black people are less attractive, so being partially not-Black makes you more attractive.”

Reece used data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health to conduct his analysis, the Atlanta Black Star reported. The doctoral candidate in sociology at Duke University in North Carolina, then examined the results of over 3,200 in-person interviews between Black people and people of varying races.

The interviewers posed a series of questions to the interviewees, including inquiries into their racial heritage. Questioners then rated the study subjects based on their attractiveness; 1 being the least attractive and 5 being the most attractive.

The study found that interviewees who identified as multi-racial were given an average attractiveness rating of 3.74. In contrast, questioners gave those who identified as black an average attractiveness rating of 3.47 – a small, but significant difference of 0.27 points.

To ensure it was the claim of multi-racial heritage that solely influenced the attractiveness ratings, Reece made it a point to control for factors such as gender, age, skin tone, hair colour, and eye colour.

“Race is more than we think it is,” he said. “It’s more than physical characteristics and ancestry and social class. The idea that you’re a certain race shapes how people view you.”

Reece’s research also made the startling find that African-Americans with darker skin who identified as mixed-race were deemed more attractive than their lighter-skinned counterparts who identified as black. Such a finding pokes a massive hole in the widespread belief that light-skinned people are favoured over dark-skinned people.

“It’s a loaded cognitive suggestion when you say ‘I’m not just black, I’m also Native American, for example,” Reece explained. “It changes the entire dynamic.”

According to Medical Daily, the sociologist plans to use this newfound information to further examine how race mixing is interpreted among Black Americans.

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