The Sexuality of Voices

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voices.pngDid you ever wonder why girls swoon over guys with dreamy, deep voices? Or why girls' voices change when they're talking to someone they have a crush on? I was curious, so I decided to evaluate a study conducted by Paul Fraccaro, which was analyzed by Psychology Today. The study observed forty-five women, who were told to leave a message to either a masculized or feminized version of a man's face: "Hi, we met at the bar last night. I was just calling you to see if you wanted to go out sometime. Call me back". The researchers also did tests to see if the women personally preferred masculine or feminine looking men. This helped the researchers to determine if the participant's voice pitch changed depending on if they were attracted to the picture of the man or not. The researchers observed the voice pitch changes with acoustic tools. The results of their experiment showed that women who were more attracted to men with feminine features left their message using a pitch higher than their natural speaking pitch. Also, the women who preferred men with more masculine features left their message with a pitch higher than their natural speaking pitch. This evidence supports the researchers' hypothesis: voice pitch changes based on sexual attraction. This study completely contradicts another study I came across. An experiment conducted at Albright University examined forty-eight students who were also asked to leave messages to people of varying attractiveness. They found that women who were interested in a mate, they lowered their voices in an attempt to sound more flirtatious and sexy. What I want to know is how two similar studies can produce contradictory results. The studies were of almost identical sizes, and observations were recorded in similar fashions. This shows me that third variables could come into play. Also, since these studies were both observational, chance could come into play. In order to achieve better results, it might be best to increase the sample size. Why do you think these results could be contradictory? How could the researchers better organize the study in order to produce better results?

1 Comment

This was so interesting to me. I personally love voices and accents. I think that I'm more attracted to a man with a deeper voice because when I hear my voice on video tapes, I feel like it sounds less feminine compared to some girls. I don't think I have a man voice, but I don't want to be with someone who has a higher pitched voice than I do. I don't think these results shocked me, but like you said with third variables, sometimes people are attracted to a personality and are willing to overlook someones flaws in their opinion, such as a high pitched voice or feminine features or vice versa.

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