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A Change in the role of the "Alpha Male" - Product of Modern Society?

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posted on Oct, 12 2010 @ 08:33 PM
Greetings again, ATS. This is my first my ”research thread” per say, so please bare with me. In this thread, I will examine what an “alpha male” is in the animal kingdom. Once this is established, I will then find out what an “alpha male” has been in human society, and how this role has “evolved” in the modern culture.

Please approach this thread with the knowledge that:
*I do NOT claim to be an authority on this subject, I am simply posting my thoughts in an organized manner.
*I am hopeful for constructive critiquing of this thread.
*I could always be wrong.

I hope you are prepared to read and reason with me!

I.) The “Alpha Male” in the Animal Kingdom


In observing the biological and sociological nature of animals
, one will often observe that there is a predominant member of the pack of group and it is a male. This animal is often the strongest of the pack and can dominate the other males and females of the group. This is called an alpha male.

An alpha male is the dominant male of that particular species of animal. This holds true for almost all mammals, such as lions, wolves, dogs and even human beings. Alpha means one or first, so it translates to number one male.

In the animal kingdom, the alpha male is determined by the physical structure of the animal, as well as its ferocity, especially in engaging another animal in battle. For lions, the alpha male usually has the largest mane or is the one with the biggest body frame. In the wild, the alpha male is the male animal that can attack and defend its prey from other encroaching animals. Other animals of the same species are then naturally drawn to the alpha male for protection. In animals, the alpha male is selected by the female as a mate because it ensures the biological continuation of the species. By selecting the strongest male, the female thinks its offspring will also have the best advantage in the wild and that the alpha male will be able to protect her and her offspring.

Above I have quoted a source that states what an Alpha Male is. We can observe some traits of the Alpha Male:
*enhanced physical structure or appearance
*bravery or ferocity
*pleasing to the females

Now that the characteristics of an Alpha Male are established, let’s continue with the research.

II.) The “Traditional” Alpha Male in regards to Humans


This is the “traditional” human Alpha Male. A man with a form that looks as if it was chiseled by the hand of God. His form is flawless, almost inhuman. His muscles bulge and ripple with every movement.


Women swoon for him. They care not about his personality, or at least they don’t immediately. All they want to know is “is he strong?”.

He is king.

He is the Alpha Male.

Or, he was at least. A change soon occurred.

posted on Oct, 12 2010 @ 08:34 PM
III.) The “New” Alpha Male

Over the years, our needs have changed. No longer do we live in a society where the strongest are the best. To the contrary, sometimes the strongest are referred to as “meat heads”, “gym junkies”, “thugs” and other condescending names because of their looks. Some of the name calling is warranted, but some of it still is a prejudice.

What have we traded the traditional Alpha Male for?






This is the “new” alpha male. A man that has style in his clothing. Who can talk smooth to you. Who can make a woman laugh at any given moment, but isn’t “goofy”. A man who does not strike you as strong. A man that simply is popular.

Society has changed. No longer is “strength” and “bravery” the qualities that determine who the alpha males are. Now, “style”, “popularity” and “sensitivity” determine who the girls will swoon for, who the guys will try to imitate, ect.


Men want to be an alpha male. But by reading literature and “self-help” books on how to be an alpha male, physical strength is no longer stressed. In fact, some even look down upon it.

What happened? Why are my class mates looking up to and immitating certain men because of their style, popularity, or sensitivity? Why does the mere idea of a guy “working out” immediately send up warning flags to females? Why are more and more females starting to prefer a man who will cry, rather than a man to cry on? What happened?

ATS, it’s your turn now. Here is where I need your help:
*Do you agree or disagree with my premise that the idea of the “alpha male” in human society has changed?
*If you agree, what do you think the cause of this change was?
*If you disagree, why?

Please help me with this critical thinking, ATS. Come, let us reason together.

edit on 12-10-2010 by gatorboi117 because: (no reason given)

posted on Oct, 12 2010 @ 08:59 PM
reply to post by gatorboi117

I think you're discounting how in the wild there are animals that do attract their mates through different colors and their own physical attraction. Take a look at the peacock

You can see that it's filled with many colors. It's kind of like women who look for style and those other things in guys. People have just evolved to want different things? Maybe culture has changed? There are lots of reasons for this. it doesn't mean that males are getting less important... or that strength or brevity isn't well liked anymore.

posted on Oct, 12 2010 @ 09:50 PM
The one thing that differentiates us from other animals is that we have the ability to establish "culture." That and that alone allows us to thrive (physical/mental attributes aside). The whole "alpha male" bit in terms of humanity is just a mere social construction (as are most things). These ideas change over time. First we favored, as you say, the man who was strong, vigilant, and protective. Now it is the culturally refined man with glossy hair, a nice paycheck, and a personality that will enchant or seduce. Personality, not biology, has become more appealing (generally speaking) due to a shift in many factors: gender roles, social movements, depictions in the media, politics, etc.

Typically, the more traditional a society, the more that people will favor these "Alpha Male" traits. In contrast, the more advanced a society becomes, the more a people will branch out and seek alternatives or combinations.

Because more freedom of expression has been allowed, women have cultivated their beliefs that men can indeed be just as emotionally supportive as they are (which is true). They still [generally] want a man who protects them and is brave however. Hence, the idea of "nice guys finishing last." Our society considers (even to this day) that men who show emotion are weak at heart and can be trampled over. But a balance is needed; one who is not too aggressive, nor too pathetic.

posted on Oct, 13 2010 @ 08:31 AM
I noticed that the image you used to illustrate a human alpha male was indeed a body builder - Who i'm going to take a wild guess, was tanked up on steds?
I would agree to some extent that the "alpha male" image has changed over the years but what it has been replaced with is not another type of alpha male, it has been replaced with men who are slave like. Think about this. I believe in the conspiracy that a one-world government is coming into play, in which the elite are going to rule the world and were all screwed yada yada yada. Everyone knows that the people involved in this plot OWN the media. One thing that can derail their plans? Unyeilding citizens. It is men (Majority of the time) that go and riot in the streets when the people have a violent dispute. So, the media has REPLACED the male "alpha" role model, with a new ideal, consisting of male's that are concerned with looking pretty and following the rules that have been set out for them. Futhermore, they have worked hard at convincing women that these types of men are better suited for relationships and family life.

However, when you look at it from a biological standpoint, women are naturally drawn to men who are tall, broad, strong, fierce and who can emotionally hold it together because ultimately, that is what you need in a protector. I dont think that will ever TRULY change - But i didnt create humans so i dont know lol.

I think what we have witnessed in the media is a feminization of men (No feminist bashing please) The media i feel has worked overtime in griding down men into blank slates, ready to be passive and accepting of any and all circumstances - No questions asked. And if men dont go out and fight, its likely that women will just sit at home to. No sexism intended, i am female and this is just how i see it.

posted on Oct, 13 2010 @ 09:04 AM
This alpha thing is very relative. Just diffrent types of alpha all shapes and sizes. In lions the alpha male is only alpha durring certain times. The female alpha lion has areas as well where the male has to back off. In monkey troops the alpha females regulate the alpha male behavior. In short in some groups the females give the nod on who will be the head male with breeding rights ect and its not always the classic type. In other sorts of animals this alph position is made through combat between males and that it that winner taking all. In birds you can find some fighting between males but it is a matter of finding a mate and the female makes that call. In the human thing its a mate that is chosen...we are not pack animals in that regard. Also being a political creature just being a pure alpha is probably a factor amoung men in sports and war but not in a mate and not in politics although one of the above photos shows a known classic alpha type that later became a gov. But how do we account for Harry Reid? Is he a passive alpha?

posted on Oct, 13 2010 @ 09:16 AM

Originally posted by SearchLightsInc
I noticed that the image you used to illustrate a human alpha male was indeed a body builder - Who i'm going to take a wild guess, was tanked up on steds?

Thats Arnold Schwarzenegger...

I have seen this coming also.. I have been curious about it.. from when I was in school the people you picked as the new "Alpha male" used to get the crap kicked out of them because they sucked or were smart or something...

I dont know maybe the way dress codes change through the yrs... maybe what people want also change.. its been known to happen..

We used to revere smart people for thier achievements, now we revere idiots like Britney Spears, or Lindsey Lohan for how much of a crap job they are doing in thier lives... Idiocracy anyone?

posted on Oct, 13 2010 @ 09:29 AM
here's how i see this problem: the cultural-model of what a man is supposed to look like is changing because a different group of women are controlling the dating pool. let me explain

most women who still want to get married, have kids, etc still want a tough guy who can be sensitive but if more like your old style alpha male. if you're relatively young think about the women you know who got married early, like right out of highschool or in the middle of college.

all the women i know who got married early got married to military men, fire fighters, police officers, mechanics. basically your classic tough guys.

so we have this selection pool where women swoop in and take men and men swoop in and take women and 1 man and 1 woman leaves the dating pool for each marriage.

now the women who want the tough guys are generally more traditional and get married younger (its easier to have a boyfriend who has a job that doesn't require a college degree, etc). the remaining women in the dating pool are going to be the types that dont' want to get married or have kids until they're 30 or maybe even older.

they now own the dating pool and can control how men conform.

they want to date around, play the field, maybe never get married. and they want girly men to do it with them. its more important to these women to find a man that will fit in with their large group of female friends, possibly go shopping with them, etc then it will be to have a shoulder to cry on. because they're more independent they force the remaining men to conform to this more well dressed, a little less tough model, also less assertive.

posted on Oct, 13 2010 @ 09:34 AM
reply to post by gatorboi117

I disagree that the role of the alpha-male has changed.

What I think has happened is that in this pc age, is that the media likes to promote a more cuddly version of what most women go for: ''a bit of rough'' !

It's not politically correct to acknowledge that women are naturally drawn to the type of men that are sometimes unfairly deemed as ''meat-heads'' by modern society.

It's just nature. Women are attracted to men that appear to be able to provide and protect for them and their potential offspring.

We are just the same species that we were 10,000 years ago, and no amount of social engineering will change the animal in us.

posted on Oct, 13 2010 @ 09:40 AM
Alright so I'm a male who's about to interpret a females perspective on the ideal guy. Keep that in mind, ladies. If I'm off on some things that are said, please feel free to correct me.

Well I think that most women ideally want what most guys interpret to be some sort of paradox, and contradiction. It's not really, it's just that women can be more multifaceted in their approach to likes and dislikes. It takes a certain understanding of contextual situations in order to get a feel for what they need/want.

Women want to have fun. The way our culture currently is, it's hip to be this emo type of guy. Now I haven't a clue what the current trends are, but it still seems to be popular for a guy to be sensitive, or rather open to their feminine side. I think they may interpret this as strength to be who you are fully. I do. Males and females have a mix of both sexes qualities. Women can be masculine at times, and men can be feminine. So when there's not a serious, survival type of need to be all macho, women seem to prefer a guy who can communicate, be trustworthy, and yet mischievous enough to have some fun and cause just a little ruckus to keep the relationship entertaining and worth the challenge.

There are times, however, where instinct trumps. It's instinctual for the man to be the protector, and the woman to be the caregiver. Sometimes the male must shun his emotional side and be the dominant man who gets things done. Sometimes he needs to stand up for his woman, and defend his territory. The key is to use your noggin at all times. Know when this instinctual mindset is truly needed, rather than when you're just being insecure about something. If you're tripping over little things, that's a huge turn off for women. They want someone who can be dominant as a reserve capacity, but also someone who keeps their cool and is easy going 98%+ of the time.

Well, that's about all I've got. I honestly don't think most women want an overly emotional guy as is portrayed a lot of the times in the media. They may think they do, but this is usually the less intelligent and/or less experienced women. Perhaps they want a gay guy or friend like this, but they want a man who's basically versatile, and not too much of any one thing at a time.
edit on 13-10-2010 by unityemissions because: (no reason given)

posted on Oct, 4 2011 @ 02:23 AM
If you've all read any 'pick-up artist' stuff by david deangelo or the book "How to become an Alpha Male" by John Alexander, you'll come to realize that what attracts women is men that make them feel good. They don't necessarily have to be tall and handsome. These qualities help, but not the majority of it. Its a biological thing and doesnt make sense logically.

Basically, through dialogue and body language, men can 'tap in' to making females feel good sexually and then have sex with them. DeAngelo and John Alexander say 'from their research' that women have a high sex drive, even higher than men. So if men can do this 'nature dance' to seduce women and get them to have sex no strings attached, this will be very desirable for the female to get her sex craving.

Alexander's book on how to become an alpha male seems to be empowering men to take control of their lives (it teaches that men shouldn't place women on pedestals and worship them), but basically its just a guide how to seduce and have sex with women anywhere anytime.

You can get the ebook online free, but guys pay for this kind of advice, go to seminars, etc to learn how to talk to women and become the 'alpha male.'

This is the problem with our society. Instead of focusing on the important issues, we are driven by our primal lusts and feel superior ('Hey I'm an alpha male I can seduce women and have sex all the time") when we achieve them. Alexander advocates pursuing women with husbands or boyfriends because it doesnt concern the "alpha male" status, and if you play your cards right, those women with husbands and boyfriends will go along with whatever the alpha male wants sexually because the alpha male used his slick dialogue and body language to seduce/attract the female and win her emotions.

Basically, the pick up artists and 'alpha male' community make the case that women don't think much but are driven by feelings and emotions, if the situation is right, whether they, or we as a society, want to admit it or not. (or even realize).

posted on Oct, 4 2011 @ 02:35 AM

Originally posted by snusfanatic
here's how i see this problem: the cultural-model of what a man is supposed to look like is changing because a different group of women are controlling the dating pool. let me explain

most women who still want to get married, have kids, etc still want a tough guy who can be sensitive but if more like your old style alpha male. if you're relatively young think about the women you know who got married early, like right out of highschool or in the middle of college.

Great point! Thanks for making me think about what may be driving the change - I had seen this occuring for a long time each generation seemed to stear away from the traditional alpha male model I was raised with more and more.
But I thought the reason would be something complicated like chemicals in our systems being unballanced by toxins etc (which may still be valid) but had not looked at the more simpler and likely answer that the profile of the women seeking the men has changed, and so has their "needs".

posted on Oct, 4 2011 @ 02:35 AM

edit on 4-10-2011 by redstorm because: (no reason given)

posted on Oct, 4 2011 @ 03:49 AM
It's pretty uncool if you have to call roadside assist to change your car tyre ,but this is whats happening
get some dirt on your hands ya pussies,you know who you are

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