Femme fatale, maneater or vamp is a common literary trope/archetype that is found in cautionary tales from around the globe warning men of the dangers and dire consequences of becoming involved with a pretty woman who is a stranger. It's basically women who may abuse the man, getting resources from him and then move on with another man as soon an opportunity arises, of which there are infinitely many for a beautiful young woman. That women can "twist men around their little fingers" despite being physically weaker is explained by the principle of least interest, Briffault's law and men's greater sex drive.
Evidence of maneaters[edit | edit source]
A prevalence of women ruthlessly exploiting men's resources can be seen in that as many as 23-33% of women have gone on dates only to get a free meal. The rate of female infidelity has risen considerably in the recent decades, having caught up with men among millennials, with women initiating more divorces than men, providing evidence that women quite easily switch mates when the opportunity arises. The wish and naturalness with which women attach themselves to a better, more powerful man when available can be explained by the bodyguard hypothesis and differential parental investment.
The significance of such women is also evidenced by a high cross-cultural pervasiveness of femme-fatale themed tales.
References[edit | edit source]
- Doug Jones, C. Loring Brace, William Jankowiak, Kevin N. Laland, Lisa E.Musselman, Judith H. Langlois, Lori A. Roggman, Daniel Pérusse, Barbara Schweder, Donald. Sexual Selection, Physical Attractiveness, and Facial Neoteny: Cross-cultural Evidence and Implications