Now you may or may not religiously read, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, and if you do, perhaps you missed this classic by Tracy Vaillancourt, “Do Human Females Use Indirect Aggression as an Intrasexual Competition Strategy?” (vol. 368, 2013, 20130080). The answer is “yes.”
The article presents extensive evidence that young women are bitchy, and attack female peers, perceived as sexy, especially those prettier than themselves. They use verbal assassination, petty vendettas and vicious backstabbing.
Vaillancourt argues that this behavior is hardwired by evolution into the female brain as an evolutionary strategy for women to knock out female completion for alpha males, who have hot genes, for pumpy-pumpy. The strategy survives today as “mean girl” behavior. Anyone who has a pretty daughter can tell you that other girls at school will make life a fuckin’ hell for them. The misery goes on and on and on…. Give me the good old days of my youth, where it was all sorted out by the boys at lunch time, with a few smacks in the nose, and maybe a tooth or two knocked out. It never hurt anyone, everybody got their asses caned, and all were good friends in five minutes. It made our countries great.
Vaillancourt performed various social psychological experiments to test the “mean girl’ hypothesis. In a nutshell, women test subjects responded with hostility to other women who dressed in a sexually provocative manner and were prettier than them, or perceived to be so by the test subjects. While men are more likely to use physical violence, women, because of their child-bearing role, still vaguely glued in the back of their skulls, are generally more cautious and prefer inserting the social knife in the back: Anne Campbell, A Mind of Her Own: The Evolutionary Psychology of Women, (Oxford University Press, New York, 2002).