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Q Success: Male and Female Species’ Social Tactics
by Meredith Horton
July 6, 2007

A recent study of the female and male species of Carolina undergrads has provided some useful insight into the courtship of these wily beings. Interestingly enough, there are two different modes of courtship ritual practiced within this species, both producing very different results.

There are two manners by which the male species announces to the student population that he is on the prowl for a mate. One way is by visibly flaunting his supposed superior male dominance and physical prowess. This may be accomplished by wearing tight shirts through which his pecks and abdomen can be seen. When an attractive female walks into the line of sight of this so-called “Alpha male” species, the male tightens his muscles, protruding his pecks in order to make them appear more shapely, and attempts to put on a neutral face in order to mask his interest in the woman and appear to be satisfied in his state of manly inadequacy. These Alpha males tend to then “run for the kill,” asking females for entrance into their living quarters as soon as a female expresses interest in him. Although this form of mating often allows a male to come into contact with more females, these relationships rarely last longer than one mating season.

Another way by which a male makes his move is by silently stalking his female prey for a period of several weeks or months. After a female catches his eye, the male will watch her intently, not yet showing any visible signs of romantic intentions. During this period, the male will make a great effort to mask his interest in the female, often avoiding situations in which his interest could possibly be prematurely revealed. This so-called “Beta-Male” will seek out confidants who are close to the female, fishing for any sign that his chosen female has interest in him. The Beta-Male’s pursuits may end in one of three ways. First, the Beta-Male may decide that pursuing the selected female more intensively is not worth the risk of embarrassment that often follows rejection and never share his feelings. A male who chooses this path will be forever lonely. A second option is that he may actually be approached by the female herself, thus uniting the female and male in a union in which the female dominates over the male. The final possibility is that the Beta-Male may slowly test the waters of closer contact with the female and finally tell the female about his feelings for her. This action may result in either heartbreak or awkwardness if the male is rejected, or the fruition of a relationship if the female also expresses interest in the male.

Although initially appearing complex, the courtship rituals of females are much simpler than that of males. Females can be categorized in the same manner as males. Alpha-females, females who are visibly on the prowl for a mate, often approach males directly in an attempt to form a relationship. Alpha-females are rarely rejected, as they often form relationships with other Alpha-males who enjoy having women make the first move in courtship. Beta-females, on the other hand, do not usually pursue males, but prefer to be pursued themselves. This action can have two results. The first is that the Beta-female is approached by a male who expresses interest in her and they enter a courting relationship leading toward the path of marital bliss. In the other scenario, the Beta-female is never approached by a male or she always appears apathetic. She is forced endure a life of living alone in a small house filled with many cats.


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