A new study shows that men with deep voices are seen as better leaders. Voters are more likely to back candidates with lower voices suggesting perceptions formed by our ancestors still hold true today, the report said.
Researchers in the study manipulated archive recordings of US presidents and created lower and higher pitched versions of each voice.
They played the recordings for test subjects and asked them to rate their perceptions of the speakers’ attractiveness, leadership potential, honesty, intelligence and dominance.
They also asked subjects which version of the voice they would prefer to vote for, both in peacetime and wartime.
In all cases test subjects preferred candidates with lower-pitched voices.
“A low voice is seen as dominant and the sign of a good leader,” the Daily Mail quoted Cara Tigue from Canada’s McMaster University as saying.
“We’re looking at men’s low voice-pitch as a cue to dominance, which is related to leadership.
‘Throughout our evolutionary history, it would have been important for our ancestors to pay attention to cues to good leadership, because group leaders affected a person’s ability to survive and reproduce within a group,” she said.
Earlier it was believed that men with low-pitched voices are considered to be more attractive and dominant.
But the new research shows that it’s the perception of dominance that has a greater influence on voting decisions.
“People think we want to vote for men with lower-pitched voices because they’re more attractive,” said Professor David Feinberg, who supervised a similar study earlier.
“But it’s because people perceive them as better leaders and more dominant, not just because they’re attractive,” he said.
The study has been published in the journal Evolution and Human Behaviour.