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Perfect Face
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Perfect Face

LEVEL 3, 4 |

Is there a perfect face? Can we measure beauty?

The latest scientific research proves that the perfect face exists.

 

Voiced by Sophia Pelivanova

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Perfect Face

Is there a perfect face? Can we measure beauty?

The latest scientific research proves that the perfect face exists. The science of attraction has come to the conclusion that beauty is an objective and quantifiable notion.

It was always considered that a pretty face was attractive because it was a collection of the average features. Dr David Perrett of the University of St Andrews with the help of his computer system refuted this theory. He carried out a number of tests. In a key test pictures of women were ranked according to their attractiveness by volunteers. Then two composite pictures were made. The first one was the average of all the pictures. The second was made from those considered to be the most attractive. At first sight those two faces looked very familiar, but vast majority preferred the composite of most attractive faces. Dr Perrett came to the conclusion that the most attractive shape was not average. If you look at most singers, movie stars and supermodels they have perfect features – larger than average eyes, higher arched eyebrows, slightly smaller noses, cheekbones are a little more prominent. The striking example is Julia Roberts. Even popular cartoon characters like Betty Boop, Yasmin from Aladdin and Bambi have big pretty eyes and small noses.

But what about man's face? Are big eyes, small nose and high cheekbones the indicator of male handsomeness? The scientists were sure that they'd get the picture of face with the classic square jaw and strong cheekbones. As it turned out women prefer men with more gentle features. Dr Perrett considered an evolutionary reason of why most women choose baby-faced men. This is because this kind of men is more likely to have a higher level of the female hormone oestrogen. In all probability he will be a kinder and more reliable husband and father.

But do these ideals of beauty manage to cross cultural boundaries? For example, in some cultures tattoos, scars and lip discs are considered to be attractive. In some tribes a woman who doesn't have this disk in her lip has no chance to ever get married.

Professor Cunningham of the University of Louisville asserted that there were only subtle differences among ethnic groups. For instance, Asians tended to prefer faces that look younger, less mature and slightly less expressive. Whereas Afro-Americans preferred faces that are a little plumper.

In conclusion we may say that the old saying “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder” is only partially true. We all seem to be attracted to similar things.

Vocabulary

to measure – to find the exact size, amount, speed etc of something using a special tool or special equipment - измерить

research – the detailed study of something – исследование, изучение

attraction – the feeling of liking someone – привлекательность

to come to the conclusion – decide that something is true after thinking about it carefully –  прийти к выводу

quantifiable - capable of being measured or described as a quantity - поддающийся количественному определению

to refute – to prove that a statement is false – опровергать, доказывать ложность

to carry out – do a particular piece of work, research etc – проводить (эксперимент)

rank – to have a particular position in a list of people or things that have been put in order of quality or importance –  ценить, расценивать, располагать по рангу

composite – made up of separate parts – составной, сложный, смешанный

vast majority – almost everyone or everything –  подавляющее большинство

arched – curved in shape –  изогнутый

prominent – important and well known –  выступающий, выдающийся

striking example – an example unusual or interesting enough to be easily noticed –  яркий пример

cartoon – a series of drawings in a magazine or newspaper that tell a funny story – комикс

indicator – something that shows you what condition something is in –  показатель

jaw – the lower part of your face that includes your chin and your bottom teeth –  челюсть

as it turned out – as it appeared to be – как оказалось

gentle – nice, not strong –  мягкий, нежный

to consider – to think about something carefully – рассматривать 

boundary – (here) an imaginary point or line separating two different qualities, ideas etc –  граница, межа

scar – a permanent mark on your skin where you have been injured –  шрам

tribe – a large group of related families who live in the same area and share a common language, religion, and customs – племя

to assert –state firmly that something is true –  утверждать

subtle – not obvious, and therefore difficult to notice – тонкий, едва различимый

mature – behaving in the sensible way that you would expect an adult to behave –  зрелый

plump – large and round in an attractive way – округлый, пухлый

beholder – someone who sees or looks at something – зритель, очевидец, свидетель