Posts filled under #cute

An extract on #cute

Doug Jones, a visiting scholar in anthropology at Cornell University, said that the proportions of facial features change with age due to changes in hard tissue and soft tissue, and Jones said that these "age-related changes" cause juvenile animals to have the "characteristic 'cute' appearance" of proportionately smaller snouts, higher foreheads and larger eyes than their adult counterparts. In terms of hard tissue, Jones said that the neurocranium grows a lot in juveniles while the bones for the nose and the parts of the skull involved in chewing food only reach maximum growth later. In terms of soft tissue, Jones said that the cartilaginous tissues of the ears and nose continue to grow throughout a person's lifetime, starting at age twenty-five the eyebrows descend on the "supraorbital rim" from a position above the supraorbital rim to a position below it, the "lateral aspect of the eyebrows" sags with age, making the eyes appear smaller, and the red part of the lips gets thinner with age due to loss of connective tissue. A study done by C. Sforza et al. said that the faces of "attractive" Northern Italian Caucasian children have "characteristics of babyness" such as a "larger forehead", a smaller jaw, "a proportionately larger and more prominent maxilla", a wider face, a flatter face and larger "anteroposterior" facial dimensions than the Northern Italian Caucasian children used as a reference.

Konrad Lorenz argued in 1949 that infantile features triggered nurturing responses in adults and that this was an evolutionary adaptation which helped ensure that adults cared for their children, ultimately securing the survival of the species. Some later scientific studies have provided further evidence for Lorenz's theory. For example, it has been shown that human adults react positively to infants who are stereotypically cute. Studies have also shown that responses to cutenessand to facial attractiveness in generalseem to be similar across and within cultures. In a study conducted by Stephan Hamann of Emory University, he found using an fMRI, that cute pictures increased brain activity in the orbital frontal cortex.

Desmond Collins, who was an Extension Lecturer of Archaeology at London University, said that the lengthened youth period of humans is part of neoteny. Physical anthropologist Barry Bogin said that the pattern of children's growth may intentionally increase the duration of their cuteness. Bogin said that the human brain reaches adult size when the body is only 40 percent complete, when "dental maturation is only 58 percent complete" and when "reproductive maturation is only 10 percent complete". Bogin said that this allometry of human growth allows children to have a "superficially infantile" appearance (large skull, small face, small body and sexual underdevelopment) longer than in other "mammalian species". Bogin said that this cute appearance causes a "nurturing" and "care-giving" response in "older individuals".

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