Sex, biology and unlocking the mysteries of love and attraction

For a Saint Mary’s College course on the biology of love and attraction, junior Noah Yang volunteered to fill out a survey asking him to name specific qualities that drew him to certain women. Eyes? Body? Personality? He couldn’t put his finger on any one thing. “I thought of my first girlfriend,” he said. “There was just that connection. It’s like an intangible thing.” Yang joins everyone from ancient Greek philosophers to modern-day self-help authors in trying to understand the mysteries of love and desire. As with everything in human behavior, this intangible thing — which every Feb. 14 we honor with a shower of roses and chocolate — is a subject of scientific inquiry. That makes today as good a time as any to explore recent breakthroughs in genetics,…


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