This originally began as an attempt to make a female version of the Socio-Sexual Hierarchy (SSH), that was originally developed by Vox Day. If you’re unfamiliar with the SSH then this video is the best basic overview of the original idea and I have referred to it in a number of posts including this one. I began writing this over a year ago under the optimistic title “Towards a Female SSH” and quickly came to the conclusion that it just doesn’t work for females — as Vox himself has stated. This is simply because women and men are not the same. Obvious I know, but something that has to be stated directly and repeatedly if it has any hope of getting through to people.
Women and men are different. What applies to men doesn’t necessarily apply to women no matter how offended they get. What follows instead is something that I hope better explains why as well as my attempt at the end to give examples of females personality types as an alternative. I will caution readers that these types are not female versions of the male categories but completely different observations about different types of women that I shall explain. I also invite criticism (except from gammas) and suggestions that could improve what follows.
If Top Gun represents the SSH for men then perhaps Pride and Prejudice can do likewise in explaining women. The best way to illustrate the differences between men and women is to consider an early part of the novel Pride and Prejudice where Mr. Bingley and Mr. Darcy first present themselves at the Meryton ball. This is around the same time in the narrative of Top Gun that Maverick and Goose enter the bar. These men are wealthy, handsome and (more obviously initially in Bingley), amiable. They have the pick of basically any woman in the room that they should fancy. The only thing that could make things complicated is if they both want the same one. The women can compete amongst themselves all they want but these two men can still pick the girl they want and after going through social formalities — will more than likely get her. The most attractive woman in the room is Jane (who also happens to be one of the most well-mannered and kind), and so Bingley understandably goes straight after her.
It really doesn’t matter what the other women do in this scenario. They can fight amongst themselves all they want. They could get together in a impromptu coven and decide to throw acid in Jane’s beautiful face. But it won’t really change the marital prospects for any one of them. The only real competition comes between the men. If things had been reversed and there were many men like Darcy and Bingley in the room, that would have changed everything but nothing the women could do would change a thing. Despite how inverted our culture has become, this remains true today.
So using the term “socio-sexual hierarchy” with women just doesn’t apply. The only hierarchy is their physical attractiveness and (in context of the novel), their social class. That they also be pleasant is certainly a consideration but this is not a deal-breaker as many men have and will continue to be taken in by a pretty face.
It is worth adding that Jane Austen clearly understood men very well which is why men often enjoy her novels. This is not surprising as she had six brothers and two were successful naval officers during the Napoleonic Wars which really couldn’t get any more manly at the time. Female writers who imitate her love triangles in ghastly romance novels write as if the women and not the men are really the ones in control. Austen was a far more sophisticated writer and mostly didn’t let fantasy interfere with reality.
In anticipating an objection, one might point out that successful, attractive men do get turned down by women they woo. Jane after all was quite free to reject Bingley. This is true but this is almost always because the woman is seeking someone she considers higher in status and a genuine alpha won’t be too cut up about it for long — if at all.
With this out of the way, I shall attempt to break down different types of women but again (because they are not men), I need to add an important consideration which is beauty or just physical attractiveness. This will need a few paragraphs.
The one problem with using Pride and Prejudice as an example is that men in this society would marry less physically attractive women if for example; they were marrying a woman from a wealthy family who could significantly increase their own financial circumstances. Yet even then, men without these considerations would certainly seek the most beautiful they could find. The Bennet’s gamma cousin Mr. Collins is quite obvious about this when he comes to visit in the hopes of marrying one of the girls. In most cases, a man, very much unlike a woman, can be physically unattractive and still attract beautiful women. This is simply because women value security and status above physical attraction. Once again, women are free to complain about this as much as they like but it will change absolutely nothing and examples of this reality are legion. I can similarly complain that I am not a rich, attractive alpha male and it will change nothing. I am what I am and women are born with varying degrees of beauty and this does matter.
A woman who is beautiful and nothing more has a lot of advantages. This doesn’t necessarily mean they are destined for a pleasant, happy life as they can still be exploited in all sorts of horrible ways and end up dead of a drug overdose in a penthouse. They will also attract an awful lot of unwanted attention due to their beauty which can cause them quite a bit of discomfort. Finally there is plenty of jealousy they will feel from other women, especially when they are clearly the most attractive in their social group. These realities aside, it is generally much easier to be a beautiful woman than an unattractive one.
Unlike the way media tends to portray, being beautiful doesn’t mean you’ll be nasty, stuck-up, ruthless or anything of the sort. Ugly women are as capable of having these sort of personality traits as beautiful women are. I have certainly met women who are beautiful, intelligent and kind as well as those who are ugly, stupid and nasty. So none of the examples below depend on the beauty or intelligence of the woman and unlike with the SSH, if a woman is beautiful, it doesn’t matter how wretched a person she is — she will still attract men.
The categories for men were originally based off the Greek alphabet though modified as for “bravo” due to “beta” having negative connotations from its use in the manosphere and pick-up groups. This isn’t a good fit for women and since women like flowers, I have named these personality types after flowers. I don’t know much about flowers but I think these work better. As mentioned earlier, I don’t think these are perfect and would invite suggestions for expansion/modification etc. I am also conscious that I am a man and therefore not privy to the inner-workings of the female mind. So take these for the simple attempts they are.
This is the classic tomboy type and it won’t surprise people that I have Daisy Duke more in mind than the flower. These women tend to understand men better and this is usually because they’ve spent a lot of time with them. This is not to imply they are butch as these type of women are still very feminine — just rougher around the edges.
The bossy girl you remember from primary school is likely to grow up to be a violet. These women are more likely to want to take charge and so the less attractive ones will marry gammas as they won’t have any trouble controlling them. This might paint a negative picture but this type can still be very loving and caring if they respect their husbands. A beautiful violet would appeal to successful men who want family and social life managed well.
Every rose has a thorn. Elizabeth from Pride and Prejudice would be my example here. These women are more likely to be intelligent and strong-willed though as with all these examples, they are still very feminine. They will want to respect their husband and therefore will be more discerning over who they marry as Elizabeth is.
Jane is the model here. The closest to the ideal woman men often romanticise about. Though this is not to say they would marry a gamma just because the gamma really likes them. They will still desire the higher status men only be a little more polite about rejecting lower status men who come after them.
With this type I don’t want to suggest that someone is born horrible and incapable of redemption as this goes against both my personal observations and my religion. However, I have certainly met some really horrible women in my time and this is the type here. They are important to mention though as a beautiful snapdragon will still attract high-status men despite their nasty personality.
This is admittedly a brief and superficial overview but it is at least a start. If nothing else, I hope I have successfully conveyed that the SSH simply does not and can not apply to women.