Title

Female virtual intrasexual competition and its consequences: An evolutionary mismatch perspective

Publication Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date

9-2017

Abstract

Intrasexual competition is a key component of sexual selection. Evolutionarily, women compete for access to and retention of mates on key dimensions that men have evolved to value and prioritize in their long- and short-term mates, in particular physical attractiveness. Such competition evolved to be adaptive in ancestral environments as the perceived competition consisted of real individuals. However, underlying psychological mechanisms for competition are excessively triggered and more continuously engaged in modern environments, because these psychological mechanisms for social comparison and competition, at a deep level, do not differentiate between real people and imagined intrasexual competition in the form of mass media images. Utilizing an evolutionary mismatch framework, this chapter explores ways that women are psychologically influenced by the pervasive presence of virtual same-sex competitors for mates. Various negative psychological states in modern societies (e.g., depression, eating disorders) may be linked to virtual intrasexual competition.

Keywords

evolutionary psychology, mismatch, mating, intrasexual competition, mass media, self-esteem, eating disorders, depression

Discipline

Personality and Social Contexts | Social Psychology

Research Areas

Psychology

Publication

Oxford handbook of women and competition

Editor

M. L. Fisher

ISBN

9780199376377

Identifier

10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199376377.013.38

Publisher

Oxford University Press

City or Country

New York

Additional URL

https://doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199376377.013.38

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