Effect of Humor on Interpersonal Attraction and Mate Selection

J Psychol. 2009 Jan;143(1):67-77. doi: 10.3200/JRLP.143.1.67-77.

Abstract

The authors examined whether different levels of sense of humor would influence respondents' ratings about a potentially desirable partner. The authors used vignettes to predict that the targets who possessed a good sense of humor would receive significantly higher ratings in measures of attractiveness and suitability as a long-term partner than would those who possessed an average or no sense of humor. In an experimental design--with gender and humor as independent variables and level of attractiveness and suitability as a long-term partner as dependent variables--the authors analyzed the data using a multivariate analysis of variance. Results show that the targets with a good sense of humor received significantly higher ratings of attractiveness and suitability than did those with an average or no sense of humor. Furthermore, male participants rated female targets as significantly more attractive than female participants rated male targets. The authors found no significant interaction between gender and humor.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Choice Behavior*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interpersonal Relations*
  • Male
  • Marriage / psychology*
  • Sexual Behavior / psychology*
  • Social Desirability*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Wit and Humor as Topic*
  • Young Adult