The Instigator
Pro (for)
7 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
6 Points

It is better to have Brains than Beauty

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/21/2013 Category: Society
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 8,102 times Debate No: 33951
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (4)
Votes (2)




" Knowledge is Power" - Sir Francis Bacon

1)The brain is the container of knowledge. The basic difference between a beast and a man, is the latter's possession of an advanced brain which gives him the ability to think and allows him to differentiate between good and evil.

2)Physical beauty is an added quality. Life is enlightened for brains and not for beauty. A beautiful person, especially the female gender in this case, can have a dull brain and might just end up harming herself. For example, Marilyn Monroe.
Marilyn was the biggest box-office draw of her time, her name sold a million movie tickets, and every red-blooded man in the world was in lust with her. But despite the power she exerted over men, including the most powerful of them, John F Kennedy, then President of the United States , Marilyn seemed strangely powerless when it came to staying in charge of her own life. She drifted from one disastrous relationship to another, sought comfort in drink and drugs, and in the end, when nothing seemed to work to numb the pain, she killed herself. I'm not trying to say that Marilyn was dumb, but her incapability to decide what was good for her is clearly brought out by the fact that she resorted to drugs and drinks for solace.

3) While Con might say, that a beautiful woman can use her body and good looks in securing high end jobs , a man, or a woman,for that matter, with a not-so-appealing face, might fail to impress their seniors, albeit he or she has the required educational qualifications. However, i personally feel that this is unethical. Would one accept sexual favors so as to get a simple job? What good would that do? The Head of the Department might give her an important job in the office but if she lacked brains and brought heavy losses to the office, she surely would get fired.

P.S. For the purpose of this argument, i have taken the gender to be "she" for it seems more plausible that a woman would use her beauty for various purposes than a man with an attrac


"To love beauty is to see light"- Victor Hugo
Con commences his argument with the full acceptance that this is a controversial argument in which the odds are stacked against him

In commencing, from Victor Hugo's quote we see that beauty is not merely a superficial construct, or as Pro puts it "an added quality" Beauty is the essence of inspiration. Con seeks to prove that the pursuit of knowledge itself is inspired by beauty. Since in this instance beauty refers to feminine beauty. Traditionally man's actions have been inspired and motivated by beauty. Without this apparent added quality, paintings such as the Mona lisa, which epitomizes art and culture,would not exist.

1) It could be argued that the world is governed by beauty. Men work, and try to acquire as much power and money as possible to get a beautiful wife, the biological reason being to have better looking children.

According the Halo effect principle, the more good looking/or beautiful a person is the more automatically associate such people with favorable characteristics

It therefore follows that a parent would generally want to create the best possible environment and circumstances for their children to grow under, as such it would follow that a parent would naturally want to have good looking/beautiful offspring, to increase the child's chances of being successful. (Please note that this paragraph serves to prove con's assertion that men acquire wealth to get a good looking wife,who will most likely provide them with good looking children)

2) From this formulation we see how our world is at its core governed by beauty,man seek it, women try and attain it, in order to have a better, richer and more powerful suitor, which explains why sales in the cosmetic industry have been reported to reach up to $170 billion a year

If we factored in other "beauty" related things/activities/products, such as gyms, diet pills and health supplements,this figure would balloon

In point 2) "A beautiful person, especially the female gender in this case, can have a dull brain" First of all beauty doesn't immediately exclude intelligence. However since Pro is arguing in such a manner, Con points out, that in society beauty is valued over ones intelligence. It is general knowledge throughout most of school, intelligent children tend to be bullied, whilst the beautiful are adored and worshiped. The constant bullying these intelligent kids endure, results in a lower sense of self confidence. If you're constantly being put down by your peers chances are you would not believe in yourself or actually be willing to anything out of your comfort zone, which is contrary to beautiful people.

With regards to point 3 it is not about using her body, its about the halo effect, it is about people's pre-conceived notions on beautiful people.
Debate Round No. 1


Traditionally man's actions have been inspired and motivated by beauty. Without this apparent added quality, paintings such as the Mona Lisa, which epitomizes art and culture,would not exist.

Let us take a moment and think what is the most important invention, beneficial to mankind. Electricity? Light Bulb? Steam Engine?

You would be right if you thought Electricity, followed by Light bulb which came in a close second.(

None of these inventions had a significant contribution on the basis of attractiveness. What Con says regarding Mona lisa, is an example of a single field - Painting. Or specifically - Portrait.

Portrait too is a matter of perception. While majority are impressed by Leonardo Da Vinci's breathtaking portrait, some might not find it very beautiful. Also, one must not forget that the painting " which epitomizes art and culture" would not have existed if papper had not been invented. Thus Brains have had a greater impact on life and soceity than physical Beauty.

Men work, and try to acquire as much power and money as possible to get a beautiful wife.

"The reason that the all-American boy prefers beauty to brains is that he can see better than he can think." - Farrah Fawcett

Farrah Fawcett, an American actress and artist, by saying this clearly reaffirms my point.

Another article,

A new research suggests men increasingly value intellect and character in a partner over a shapely figure. Apparently, traditional wifely skills such as being a good cook are also becoming less important to modern men, British scientists claim.(

a parent would naturally want to have good looking/beautiful offspring, to increase the child's chances of being successful.

It seems more plausible that a parent would want their child to have acdemic success first and then the the good looks and beauty.

which explains why sales in the cosmetic industry have been reported to reach up to $170 billion a year

It is ironic how the link you mentioned refers to chemistry which reaffirms my point that one needs intellect first. All beauty related products which Con has mentioned is produced to some chemists intellectual thought process, which led to the invention of the mentioned products. Calculation of billions of dollars($170 billion) is done by economists and super computers all of which have been invented by people with brains.

About the Halo Effect:

Landy and Sigall’s 1974 study demonstrated the halo effect on judgments of intelligence and competence on academic tasks. Twenty were presented with a photo of an attractive female as author and twenty with that of an unattractive female as author. On a scale of 1–9, the well-written essay by the attractive author received an average of 6.7 while the unattractive author received a 5.9 . The gap was larger on the poor essay: the attractive author received an average of 5.2.
Thus intelligent but not attractive person was rated higher than attractive but not intelligent person.



"Let us take a moment and think what is the most important invention, beneficial to mankind. Electricity? Light Bulb? Steam Engine?"
Here we have 2 important innovations, one being electricity, which on its own cannot be regarded as an invention since it existed in the form of lightning. Harnessing electricity, which would be the most appropriate term is truly an important event in our history, that Con concedes is exceptional intelligence. Whereas exceptional beauty lies in the form of a single thing, as Pro points "portrait".
Pro does not dispute that art is culture therefore con will proceed under the assumption that pro agrees with this
Here we have two conflicting "innovations" technology, in the form of electricity and culture in the form of art.
Con argues that a lot more bad has resulted from innovations with regards to technology (which stands for intelligence) as opposed to culture .

Intelligence resulted in the creation of the atomic bomb, which resulted in casualties of up to 135000 and 64000 in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, respectively

Intelligence resulted in war formations, war strategies, wars and weapons that have killed millions of people the world over. Intelligence is a weapon used in white collar crimes, corruption scandals and other morally wrongful acts. Exploitation of cheap labor in Chinese sweat shops can be regarded as a result of Companies such as Motorola, using their "intelligence" to exploit a cheap labor force and be able to produce their goods at lower prices.

Beauty on the other hand, does nothing but inspire. Great poets such as William Shakespeare where inspired by beauty and love (which can be associated with beauty). Music emanates from poetry and as coined in the Mourning Bride by William Congreve "Music has charms to soothe a savage beast". The difference between man and beast is not intelligence, it is culture, particularly the appreciation of beauty (be it artistically or in the form of the female). If human standards for intelligence are applied to non-human animals, dolphins come close to our own brain aptitude levels ( According to Pro's argument a dolphin should be equal to a human, because it is not essentially a beast, by virtue of its intelligence

The cosmetic industry is a result of intellectual thought, however the driving force inspiring that intelligence still remains the same; to make a person more beautiful, essentially that intellect is driven by something more supreme; beauty

Halo Effect
"a first glance at a person's face often leaves a lasting impression.... Facial features are more often remembered following initial interactions" (, the more beautiful a person the more inclined we are to favor that person.
Debate Round No. 2


"Beauty is only skin deep"

For some people, the need to be beautiful is so strong that they are willing to put their lives at risk. Some are starving themselves which can lead to disorders like anorexia nervosa, which has killed many women, including the Brazilian model Ana Carolina Reston and Karen Carpenter, a singer in the 70s. Throughout the ages, people have used various methods to make themselves look more beautiful. In China, people used to follow a tradition of binding girls' feet to make their feet smaller because women with small feet were thought to be more beautiful. Foot binding was torture for these girls; nevertheless, if it could make them look more beautiful, they were willing to live with the pain. In the 1500s, European women thought that it was beautiful to have very white skin. To make their faces whiter, they wore make-up that contained lead. They didn't suspect that they were putting poison on their skin for the sake of beauty. For many years, women of the Padaung tribe added rings to gradually lengthen their necks. In this culture, a long neck signifies great beauty. The more rings they can fit on their necks, the more beautiful they are considered to be. Unfortunately, this makes the bones in their necks move apart, which means that their necks could be easily broken. Cosmetic surgeries like breast implants, facelifts, and even liposuction have caused many deaths. People who have these proceduresdone don't want to admit that they are taking tremendous risks, nor do they understand how easily these operations can go wrong. Olivia Goldsmith, a best-selling novelist, died after she had a facelift in Miami, Florida

With reference to atomic bombs and other weapons of mass destruction, i have would like to say that these are two sides of the same coin. Where there is good there is evil. So it is with Beauty too.

Con does not show the negative effects of music.

During the last decade we have seen music lyrics become more and more violent and sexually explicit in genres like Heavy metal, rap, gansta rap, industrial, hardcore, and alternative music. Experts argue that this can cause problems in children and adolescents. One is to assume that somewhere in the mix a child is going to hear something derogatory or objectionable, as it has become the norm in today’s society. In most music today especially rap and heavy metal most of the lyrics contain references to violence, sex, and/or drugs. We must ask ourselves whether the child fully understands and comprehends what the artist is saying. Teenagers often do not understand what is being said, in fact in one study only 30% of those questioned knew the lyrics to their favorite songs and they all had varied comprehension as to what the message was.

Some lyrics are indeed harsh such as this Nine Inch Nails lyric:

" Held against your forehead I'll make you suck

You know, just for the *censored* of it. ”

Obviously we cannot interpret this as a positive meaning.

Vote for Pro. Thank You.



Beauty is not only skin deep, as it serves as a foundation of one's behavior in society. However this is not the argument

Con acknowledges that people in the olden days used lead coated makeup, as the intelligence of the time led them to the belief that this would help make them look better and more fashionable. However Con disputes Pro's unfounded assumption that in the pursuit of beauty people starve themselves to the point that they have disorders such as anorexia. Such disorders are a result of an underlying psychological problem such as a tendency of depression and/or depression and excessive worrying and feeling scared or doubtful about the future

Pro mentions Chinese binding of feet, although this began as an act in the pursuit of beauty (this is also disputable as there is a view that this originated as a method of stopping the wives of the upper class from escaping a beating) it became more of a tradition and as such can no longer in the modern day be associated with beauty or the pursuit of it

The alleged danger Pro associates with cosmetic surgery can be countered by the positives, for example a higher sense of self confidence. Without confidence, intelligence which is according to Pro's assertion superior to beauty, would not amount to much, because you would not be able to assert the ideas

With regards to the arguments on the negatives of music, Con argues that only susceptible people who have a predisposition of being easily influenced can be influenced by music. If music did influence sex, drugs and violence where the order of the day before music got as vulgar as it supposedly is. Pro shows no evidence to support his claim, therefore a presumption must be drawn from Pro's failure that there is no evidence supporting his claim. "Experts argue" which experts?
Furthermore the fact that Pro quoted that 30% of teens questioned knew the lyrics of their favorite songs kills Pro's argument. If most do not listen or know the lyrics of the song, how can you then say that when a child hears derogatory lyrics this influences his behavior, how does it influence his behavior when s/he's listening to the lyrics.

Pro has failed to show the negatives associated with music and with beauty in its entirety.
Furthermore Pro failed to counter the argument regarding the Halo effect reiterated in Con's second argument, failure to address this issue, should be seen as a concession on that point
Debate Round No. 3
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by Emmo 3 years ago
well done for handing me my first lose... i was hoping i would go unbeaten for a long time
Posted by leprechaun 3 years ago
@emmo, sorry I couldn't explain all that you pointed out because I had reached the character limit. Sorry.
Posted by leprechaun 3 years ago
@conservative, assuming you aren't, it would be a genuine honor if you accept to have a debate on aforementioned topic with me.
Posted by ConservativePolitico 3 years ago
If I am not mistaken, your first premise seems to take the term "brains" as literally having a physical brain...
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by niltiac 3 years ago
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Total points awarded:43 
Reasons for voting decision: I believe pro won because they managed to sway me from one side to the other.
Vote Placed by Legitdebater 3 years ago
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Total points awarded:33 
Reasons for voting decision: Spelling and grammar to Pro because Pro made several capitalization and punctuation errors errors: "i, Brains, left out commas" whereas Con had only a few punctuation errors. Arguments to Pro, because Pro points out that our world couldn't have progressed without knowledge and did a better job of refuting Con's arguments, especially the cosmetics one. Con makes good points about how beauty influenced poets, however, Pro points out the negative impact of society trying to conform to be beautiful: European women, Chinese foot- binding. Sources to Con because he used a variety sources and more than Pro.