Are pro-social or socially aversive people more physically symmetrical? Symmetry in relation to over 200 personality variables
Nicholas S Holtzman et al., 2011
Symmetry on bilateral body parts indicates evolutionary ﬁtness. Thus, traits positively associated with symmetry are thought to have conferred ﬁtness in evolutionary history. Studies of the relationships between personality traits and symmetry have been narrow and have produced inconsistent ﬁndings. In our study, we relate both body symmetry and facial symmetry to 203 personality variables and to the Big Five. Our results demonstrate that (a) symmetry is related to personality traits beyond chance, (b) socially aversive traits, such as aggression and Neuroticism are positively related to symmetry, and (c) pro-social traits such as empathy and Agreeableness are negatively related to symmetry. Such trait levels may developmentally adjust in response to symmetry or may be inherited with symmetry (i.e., dual inheritance).