Social pressures and the relevance of evolution.

Sexual selection is a way in which organisms choose their potential mates through physical characteristics, first described by Charles Darwin in 1859. These features are usually used to reference the “integrity” of the organism, such as the health and reproductive potential of the mate, and can be indicated through age, size and appearance. Thus, sexual selection plays a key role in evolution, it has influenced how all organisms have developed and will effect how they develop and adapt in the future.

This evolutionary concept has also effected the way humans have developed over time and contributes to the social pressures that are present today. In humans, Charles Darwin suggested that the hairlessness of females (in comparison to male) alludes to good reproductive potential, as it indicates hormones levels. Hip size, body shape and facial features also indicate the ability to reproduce in humans, as well as whether the genetics of the organism would be beneficial for the offspring. Thus, these characteristics have manifested themselves into our lives, even today.

Youth indicates the reproductive potential of the organism, and in humans youth is usually indicated by facial features such as large wide set eyes, a large forehead  and hair colour (amounts of grey hair). Reproductive potential is also measured by the body type of human, such as weight, size of sexual characteristics (such as breasts, bum, hips or chest) and (as previously mentioned) body hair, as these determine sex hormone levels and thus indicate the ability to reproduce. Thus sexual selection has shaped human preference.

These preferences are still present today and have undoubtedly contributed to the social pressures on women to shave, dye grey hairs, diet and seek cosmetic surgery. But, this cannot be used as an excuse for these inappropriate and ridiculous expectations for women, as humans have removed themselves from the evolutionary chain (though we are still evolving, but not as other organisms do). Thus, the preferences of sexual selection are irrelevant in humans today, as humans are the dominant species in the planet with no predators and thus competition to maintain the species is unimportant in the human race.

The pressures on women to look a certain way is not only detrimental to the confidence of women but is completely irrelevant to humans today, as they have removed themselves from the evolutionary course.