Are beautiful people more intelligent?

There’s a curious article from The Guardian on the work of two researchers who are investigating the link between beauty and intelligence, and who argue that a genuine link exists.

Are beautiful people more intelligent than the rest of us? Satoshi Kanazawa and Jody Kovar think so. In a 17-page study called Why Beautiful People Are More Intelligent, they explain bluntly: “Individuals perceive physically attractive others to be more intelligent than physically unattractive others. While most researchers dismiss this perception as a ‘bias’ or ‘stereotype’, we contend that individuals have this perception because beautiful people indeed are more intelligent.”

The full paper is available online as a pdf and there’s a previous write-up from the Washington Post.

It seems the research is largely on the link between beauty and intelligence in females, however.

Link to Guardian article ‘Pretty smart’.
Link to Washington Post article.
pdf of research article.

2 Comments

  1. Posted September 9, 2006 at 9:31 pm | Permalink

    In men, there is obviously an inverse correlation.

  2. fiznut
    Posted September 9, 2006 at 9:51 pm | Permalink

    Uh oh. Bad news for me. ;)
    I might be able to see what they’re getting at. If a person is beautiful, and the people that surround them most of their life place expectations of intelligence because of it, then perhaps in most of their life they’ve had a tendency to focus on learning, acquisition of knowledge, or other ways of increasing one’s intelligence. Kindof in the same way a person will develop a very negative outlook on life and not strive for success if all of their life they are told they are a failure, whether by family, friends, peers, etc.
    That being said, some of the most intelligent people on this planet are not necessarily “beautiful” human beings.


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