For any society that isn’t shrouded in a reality distorted by mass media, the notion of “who’s sexy” is primarily tied to what’s most favourable, in terms of sustenance and propagation of the species. Subtle, and not-so-subtle indications of fertility—the large forehead or curvaceous hips, strength—lean muscled arms or the chiseled abdomen, health, being part of a good gene pool, that you’re capable of sustaining yourself and a family, that you’ll actually stick around… is a subset of the criteria that matter.
At some point, starting about the time humans began shaping their first crude tools to help them in their daily survival-oriented activities, it was slowly becoming clearer that being strong and muscular has little to with one’s effectiveness as a hunter, one’s ability to defend themselves or their home (or even their country) and least of all, one’s ability to provide and care for their family.
I could proceed with this argument using better clubs, traps and bows-and-arrows as examples, but I am going to fast-forward in time to make a more emphatic statement.
I was watching this documentary the other day on the Second World War. (I am not anti or pro war, so my observations are not too emotionally biased.) Specifically, they mentioned how Japanese heads of armies prided themselves on their armies being populated by soldiers who were habituated in the “ways of the Samurai warrior”. Meaning, because they had discipline, skill, courage, strength and so on, they were invincible.
It’s scary how wrong a society so enamored with technology can be about it.
A few scrawny geeks sitting in the corner of some room across the world, scribbling on bits of paper, figure out how to harness the power of atomic fission (and later fusion) to build a bomb. Where is your Samurai warrior now? Honestly, what chance does he or thousands like him or even millions of him stand next to a fission (let alone thermonuclear) warhead? Sure he can swing a sword or shoot an arrow, but what good is that when your opponent can annihilate your entire country before you can blink an eyelid?
What do you have to say to that? Who really has the power?
So returning to our central theme, isn’t such a even-if-scrawny intense geek type better capable of defending themselves (or their home or intelligently hunting, or intelligently coming up with ways of growing the better crop, or intelligently curing themselves and ones around them of major diseases, or even enhancing and enlarging their erections via chemical concoctions), really your best bet for a comfortable life and prolonged propagation of your species? Therefore, based on our hypothesis, aren’t these the sorts of people you should be finding sexy?
So why is it that Chuck Norris, or someone else like him, still shows up on TV at 3 A.M. and tries to convince you that being beefy is of paramount importance in being found sexy? Why is that even the least bit of anyone’s concern? Isn’t being intellectually forward (and hence all those other things) what people should be looking for?
This isn’t 10000 BC or whatever.