GO IN DEPTH

Body Odor

Body Odor Photo Credit: Clipart.com

Introduction

Your teacher will assign you one of the question sets below.

Use the questions on this page to develop hypotheses about body odor. Note that assuming body odor is normal and has a purpose is the general starting point for all the further considerations. You will present your hypotheses to the class and discuss which one is more likely in your opinion and why.


Question Set #1
Assume body odor is normal and that it even has some useful functions. What might those purposes be? Modern humans often live and work in close quarters. How might that affect the functions and perceptions of body odors?


Question Set #2
Assume body odor is normal and that it even has some useful functions. What might those purposes be? Could it be that our olfactory abilities are not sensitive enough to detect information in body odors? Which of our senses are most important in our perception of the world? Try comparing humans to dogs and notice their appreciation of odors.

Question Set #3
Assume body odor is normal and that it even has some useful functions. What might those purposes be? Humans are the only mammals who wear clothing. How does clothing affect body odors and our perceptions of them?

Question Set #4
Assume body odor is normal and that it even has some useful functions. What might those purposes be? Are manufacturers of deodorants influential in our perceptions of body odors? How are body odors perceived in countries where deodorants are not available? How were they perceived before deodorants were invented?

Did you find this resource helpful?

AAAS