In-Law Preferences in China: What Parents Look for in the Parents of Their Children's Mates

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    Abstract

    Across different times and cultures, parents play an important role in influencing their children's mating decisions. When they do so, they aim to forge useful alliances with other parents which raises the question of what parents look for in the latter. The current research aims to address this question. In particular, we employed an online sample of 925 Chinese parents who were asked to rate the desirability of 88 traits in the parents of prospective mates for their children. Principal components analysis classified these traits in eight factors for the mothers and 10 factors of interest for the fathers of their children's mates. We also found that parents had a well-defined hierarchy of preferences, fathers, and mothers were in agreement in what they looked for in a prospective in-law, but their preferences were contingent to the sex of the in-law.

    Original languageEnglish
    JournalEvolutionary psychology : an international journal of evolutionary approaches to psychology and behavior
    Volume15
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2017

    Keywords

    • in-law preferences
    • mate choice
    • mating
    • parental choice

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