Why Do Human Perceptions of Beauty Change? The Construction of the Aesthetic Niche


Portera posits that human niche construction can provide insight into how aesthetic standards develop within human societies and cultures. Standards of beauty, she argues, are neither wholly part of our genetic makeup nor given at birth, but tend to evolve through cultural niche construction behavior and biological evolution. Portera shows that our appreciation of the arts has coevolved with our aestheticization of the environment, resulting in the construction of an aesthetic niche in which culturally acquired traits are transmitted in the form of an aesthetic inheritance.

DOI: doi.org/10.5282/rcc/7728