- Buss, David M. Evolutionary psychology: The new science of the mind. Psychology Press, 2015.
- Buss, David M. "Consequences for Partner Choice and Intrasexual Competition." in The adapted mind: Evolutionary psychology and the generation of culture, page 249. Oxford University Press, 1995.
- Sapolsky, Robert M. "Hierarchy, Obedience, and Resistance" in Behave: The biology of humans at our best and worst. Penguin, 2017.
- Whipple, Tom. X and Why: The rules of attraction: why gender still matters. Short Books, 2018.
Women prefer high status men and fewer men than women reproduce as a result:
In a large population survey, males with much lower income than their wives were 2.27 times as likely not to have sex.
https://doi.org/10.1007/s10508-017-0968-7 (Kim 2017)
Women’s income was correlated with the income that they wanted in an ideal mate (r = .31), his educational (r = .29) and professional status (r = .35), i.e. women with higher income expressed an even stronger preference for high-earning men than did women who were less financially successful.
https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-psych-010418-103408 (Buss 2018)
Since 1980, women increasingly marry down in education, but the tendency for women to marry men with higher incomes than themselves persisted. The findings suggest that men and women continue to form marriages in which the wife’s socioeconomic status does not exceed that of the husband.
https://etd.ohiolink.edu/pg_10?0::NO:10:P10_ETD_SUBID:113754 (Qian 2016)
Unmarried college-educated women between the ages of 40 and 64 earn an average of 17.5 percent more than their male peers.
In a large US sample, high status men (especially of lower IQ) have ~18% more children compared to low status men, whereas high status women have ~40% fewer children compared to low status women. A reason might be that high status women struggle to find men of even higher status.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2005.07.004 (Hopcroft 2006)
A similar effect has been found in 33 different countries.
https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1606800113 (Von Rueden 2016)
A similar effect has also been found in pre-industrial societies.
http://doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780190299323.013.29 (Fieder, 2018)
Women's attractiveness ratings of men are 1,000 times as sensitive to salary than vice-versa. (The authors also conclude this may pose a barrier for male engagement in low-consumption lifestyles.)
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2017.12.008 (Wang 2018)
Aversion to having the wife earn more than the husband explains 29 percent of the decline in marriage rates over the last thirty years (N = 73,654).
https://doi.org/10.1093/qje/qjv001 (Bertrand 2015)
71% of women with income of more than $95,000 per year vs 14% of men feel it is essential their romantic partner has a steady income.
https://www.researchgate.net/publication/282931592 (Fales 2016)
On a Chinese dating site, women with high income more often visited male profiles with even higher income. Such preferences do not exist in men.
Females on Tinder 'liked' profiles with a higher education level relative to their own 92% more often and profiles with lower education 45.4% less often. Males did not care about higher education (but they also liked less educated women 10.1% less often).
ftp://repec.iza.org/RePEc/Discussionpaper/dp11933.pdf (Neyt 2018)
Women regard male war heroes as more sexually attractive. This effect is absent for male participants judging female war heroes, suggesting that bravery and high status are gender specific signals.
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1090513815000239 (Rusch 2015)
Men might have been selected to hide/deny their illnesses & limitations (stoicism) which might contribute to men's earlier mortality. Health is a stronger predictor of marriage satisfaction for males than for females, suggesting that it is more important for males to be confident and dependable.
https://www.ashdin.com/articles/female-choice-and-male-stoicism.pdf (Brown 2018)
Men are more status driven, e.g. men are more likely to help if helping is considered a heroic act (d = .75) and enjoy competition more (d = .8).
https://www.jstor.org/stable/pdf/23096146.pdf (Schneider 2005)
https://www.gwern.net/docs/iq/2014-hyde.pdf (Hyde 2014)
In Spain, unattractive men are ~16% less likely married than attractive men, and ~30% less likely married to a partner of higher educational status. No such effects exist for women.
http://www.reis.cis.es/REIS/PDF/REIS_159_07_ENGLISH1499424514902.pdf (Martínez-Pastor, 2017)
Photoshopping a man into a luxury apartment made women rate him as around 30% more attractive. The same manipulation had no significant effect on men rating women.
http://doi.org/10.1556/JEP.12.2014.1.1 (Dunn 2014)
85% of female medical students answered "As my status increases, my pool of acceptable partners decreases". In contrast, 90% of men stated their pool would increase. None of the females preferred a partner with lower income than their own (N = 20 males, N = 20 females).
http://doi.org/10.1007/bf01541424 (Townsend 1987)
Hypergamy as a tendency of women to marry up in socioeconomic status has declined over the past 50 years, but women's preference for a better earning partner has not lessened by much.
Stereotypical sex differences in mating preferences (males preferring youthful women, and women preferring wealthy men) remained robust over 30 years in Brazil despite substantial changes in gender equality index.
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0191886916300538 (Souza 2016)
https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s40806-016-0048-6 (Bech-Sørensen 2016)
Using economic modeling, the tendency that the husband has a greater human capital than the wife (hypergamy), can be formally derived from the premise that women can sell exclusive access to sex because men want to be certain about their biological fatherhood and that men can sell their amassed resources because women need them.
https://d-nb.info/997448148/34 (Saint-Paul 2009)
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S016748701630277X (Baumeister 2017)
"The importance of resources to women is apparent even in egalitarian societies such as the Ache and the Sharanahua, where the best hunters are able to attract the most sexual partners."
https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/bbf7/77fbe21100d32ebd55a41b65de7151628235.pdf (Cashdan 1996)
In industrialized societies, status in males accounts for 62% of the variance of copulation frequency.
https://doi.org/10.1017/S0140525X00029939 (Perusse 1993)
Males gained peer status through having had sex (females lost peer status).
https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11199-016-0618-x (Kreager 2016)
Among college-educated Women, the percentage of divorces initiated by women is approximately 90% (compared to 75% in the overall US population).
http://laurabetzig.org/pdf/CA89.pdf (Betzig 1989)
College educated women seem to refuse to marry down regarding educational status and are hence more likely lonely.
https://www.edge.org/response-detail/26747 (Buss 2016)
Analysis based on the geolocations of 68,562 sexualized self-portrait photographs (“sexy selfies”) reveals that income inequality, not gender oppression, positively covaries with female sexualization on social media, suggesting that intrasexual competition resulting from hypergamy drives the sexualization of women.
http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2018/08/20/1717959115 (Blake 2018)
It may also be a prime cause of eating disorders among women.
https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2018.02122/full (Nettersheim 2018)
Intimidation of rivals and physical dominance, not sexual attractiveness as judged by females, predicted mating success of males, suggesting that males are mainly selected by their status in a dominance hierarchy.
https://psyarxiv.com/edw4f/ (Kordsmeyer 2018)
Women have possibly evolved to prefer the most dominant man available because that man can provide protection from other contenders (bodyguard hypothesis) as well as access to higher quality foods.
http://web.simmons.edu/%7Eturnerg/MCC/Matechoice2PDF.pdf (Geary 2004)
Humans have been moderately polygamous throughout history: 85% of 1,231 human societies in the Standard Sample and the Ethnographic Atlas have permitted men to have more than one wife.
https://d-place.org/search (Ethnographic Atlas > Marriage)
Counting the number of wives relative to the number of men across many societies reveals that on average around ~22% of men were unmarried (assuming the sex ratio was 1:1 and that all women were married).
http://doi.org/10.1086/203674 (White 1988)
http://rstb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/royptb/367/1589/657.full.pdf (Henrich 2012)
An analysis of the genetic diversity of exclusively male and female parts of human DNA suggest that human females have reproduced 2 to 17 times as often as males. While the sex ratio of branches on a tree of ancestors is 1:1, more of the males are repeats. Possibly 80% of females have produced surviving offspring, but only 40% of males.
https://doi.org/10.1093/molbev/msh214 (Wilder 2004)
This is consistent with data from contemporary hunter gatherers, e.g. among !Kung people, men have a greater variance in the number of children (Bateman's principle), as well as with data from 18 different countries.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3096780/ (Brown et al., 2009)
Humans instinctively organize in status hierarchies and can easily tell status from subtle cues:
Grade received after an exam influences erectness of posture (r = .6 to .8) and people intuitively infer dominance from erectness of posture. (Erectness before the exam does not affect the grade.)
https://doi.org/10.1007/bf00992459 (Weisfeld, 1982)
Ten months old toddlers are able to infer dominance relations between simple geometric objects by observing relative confidence and forcefulness in the object's movements.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21273490 (Thomsen 2011)
Another simple measure of dominance is the Visual Dominance Ratio defined as VDR = (% eye contact while speaking) / (% eye contact while listening).
Dominance positively correlates with eye contact during speaking and negatively with eye contact during listening.
The VDR cancels out differences in individual propensity for holding eye contact and combines both in one number.
Table with examples: https://i.imgur.com/mOT2svN.png
https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-1-4684-2835-3_2 (Exline 1975)
https://doi.org/10.2307/3033735 (Ellyson 1980)
Smaller (less dominant) football players displayed more smiling than larger (more dominant) football players (F(1.41, 38.10) = 111.80, partial η² = .81).
http://doi.org/10.1177/147470491201000301 (Ketelaar 2012)
Low status individuals accommodated their voices to the voice pitch of their higher status partners.
https://doi.org/10.1177/0190272517738215 (Gregory 1996)
A single glance of 100 ms is sufficient to form reliable, consensual first impressions about social status (α = .90 to .95 for male status), suggesting that humans are hardwired to tell social status largely based on distinct facial features.
http://doi.org/10.1177/1948550617732388 (Palomares 2017)
Humans longer fixate their visual attention to photos of high status men, but not of high status women, suggesting that humans care more about men's achievements and status.
https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/147470490800600209 (DeWall 2008)
Relevance to hypergamy: Women can likely tell men's social status easily.
Female mate-choice copying:
90% of single women were interested in a man who they believed was taken, while a mere 59% wanted the same person when single (d ≈ 1.05, N = 35 single women, N = 40 single men). No significant effect for men.
http://doi.org/10.1016/j.jesp.2009.04.022 (Parker 2009)
Women more likely to pursue a committed than a single target (d ≈ .74, N = 80). Men showed no significant difference.
http://digital.library.okstate.edu/etd/umi-okstate-2649.pdf (Parker 2008)
Women rate photos of married men as more attractive (d ≈ 1.17, N = 38).
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1660608/ (Eva 2006)
In a meta analysis, men were rated as more attractive when seen in the presence of a female, but women as less attractive in presence of a male (both gain attractiveness as the attractiveness of the partner is increased).
https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s40750-018-0099-y (Gouda-Vossos et al., 2018)
Relevance to hypergamy: Both social status and mate choice copying are about how others regard a particular male, hence closely related.
A few more related studies:
Women can offer sex or exclusive sexual access to men in exchange for resources. Women compete by enhancing physical appearance and denigrating rivals’ reputations. Men compete both individually and in groups to amass resources to exchange for sex. Male intrasexual competition is less zero sum than women’s because men cooperate to amass resources.
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S016748701630277X (Baumeister 2017)
Men who are one standard deviation nicer, have an 18.3% lower income. (For women it's 5.47% lower, but they are more agreeable and tend to occupy positions of lower status to begin with.)
Relevance to hypergamy: Foring men to be nice harms their financial and hence also romantic success.
http://doi.org/10.1037/a0026021 (Judge 2012)
Male students invest less academic effort than female students because they compete in effortless achievements and because effort has become a female stereotype.
Relevance to hypergamy: As women surpass males in education level and income, fewer males will be attractive to them.
http://doi.org/10.1007/s11199-016-0683-1 (Heyder 2016)