In human genetics, assortative mating is a form of non-random mating in which pair bonds are established on the basis of phenotype i.e. observable characteristics, which is thought to underlie mate selection in a variety of animal species as well.
“I had a patient once who dreamed she kept her husband in the deep freeze except for mating. Lots of men feel that way.” – Robert Johnson
In human relations, the assortative mating process may lead a person to choose a mate according to religious, cultural, or ethnic preferences, professional interests, or physical traits.
Positive assortative mating, or homogamy, exists when people choose to mate with persons similar to themselves; this type of selection is very common.
Negative assortative mating is the opposite case, when people avoid mating with persons similar to themselves.
“All nature’s creatures join to express nature’s purpose. Somewhere in their mounting and mating, rutting and butting is the very secret of nature itself.” – Graham Swift