Consciously or unconsciously, we all have private pictures associated with certain names. Jackie could be sophisticated and beautiful, like Jackie Kennedy, or Fat and funny, like Jackie Gleason. These pictures come from personal experience as well as From images we absorb from the mass media, and thus they may conflict in interesting ways. The name Charlton strikes many people as a sissified, passive, whiny brat - until they think of Charlton Heston. Marilyn may personify voluptuous femininity -until you think of Marilyn, your neighbor with the ratty bathrobe, curlers, and a cigarette dangling out of her mouth.
Over the years, researchers have been fascinated by this question of the "real" meanings of names and their effects. When asked to stereotype names by age, trustworthiness, attractiveness, sociability, kindness, aggressiveness, popularity, masculinity/femininity, degree of activity or passivity, etc., people actually do tend to agree on each name's characteristics.
So if people think of Mallory as cute and likeable, does that influence a girl named Mallory to become cute and likeable? Experts agree that names don't guarantee instant success or condemn people to certain failure, but they do affect self-images, influence relationships with others, and help (or hinder) success in work and school.
The following are lists of boys' and girls' names that were found to have particular image associations.