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A recent study published in Springer’s Journal Archive’s of Sexual Behavior studied the correlation between the height of a woman’s heel and the influence that has on how men act around her. Nicolas Guéguen, the director of the study, took a woman outdoors and had her ask people to complete a survey in flat shoes and high heels. In this situation Guéguen observed that men were more likely to complete the survey if the woman asking was wearing high heels. The heel height had no affect on other women though. Next, Guéguen took the woman to a bar and found that men were more likely to start talking to her if she was wearing heels rather than flats. Guéguen does believe that more research should be conducted on this specific topic, but it’s a start. He also stated that he believes that men act the way they do around women in heels because of the way women in heels are portrayed in the media.
This study immediately caught my attention because I am a heel loving, and wearing, girl. How could one small factor effect men on such a level? What does this say about our society today, and what implications could it have for the future?
After thoroughly examining the study, I found a few flaws in this system. First of all, the study is observational and is only partially blind. The giver of the survey (the woman) and the person observing were both in on what they were trying to find, so that could have caused the woman to be more open to reaching out for help from the men instead of the women. There was also only one woman used in the study. A bigger sample size would have reduced the effects of chance, which can never be eliminated, and are still always present. Another problem is that they didn’t account for third variables. Guéguen even states that the media could be another factor that plays into the results that the study produced. This study was conducted in France, so readers also have to be cautious about the implications it has in America.
Overall I think the study has an interesting topic, but there should be more studies like it. If this study is replicated and rid of other conflicting variables there may be some good evidence that in fact there is a correlation between the helpfulness of a man and the height of a woman’s heel. For now I find it hard to even say that there is a strong correlation because of the flaws in this particular study.
“High Heels May Enhance a Man’s Instinct to Be Helpful.” Springer.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Dec. 2014. <http://www.springer.com/gp/about-springer/media/springer-select/high-heels-may-enhance-a-man-s-instinct-to-be-helpful/40852>.