RealTalk notes that it’s impossible to watch entertainment without seeing some form of the SSH in action:
Random SSH esthetics. S2E11 Big Bang Theory.
- Gamma Leonard hateful/jealous of rival Alpha Underhill physicist. Throws lots of shade.
- Underhill asks Leonard to work with him. Leonard acts like a school girl who just got asked out. Infatuated by Alpha for the next 5 minutes of the episode.
- Alpha Underhill meets Penny, hits it off. Gamma Leonard becomes a hater again.
- Alpha proves to be a jerk, and Penny runs back to friend-zoned Gamma for comfort.
Was watching the episode while reading this. I can’t stop myself from seeing through this lens anymore. It’s everywhere!
But the scope of the Socio-Sexual Hierarchy is actually much broader, and much older, than Hollywood. Consider this excerpt from Genji monogatari, written in Japan more than one thousand years ago, in which the refined, sensitive Kaoru is expressing his jealousy of the success the bold philanderer Niou repeatedly enjoys with women.
Women apparently have a weakness for his kind of passionate, impetuous behavior. It makes me sad to think that my relationship with him and his sister, the First Princess, has brought me only pain and misfortune. How sweet it would be to seduce one of these extraordinary women, someone Niou, in his usual fashion, has fallen madly in love with, and have him suffer the same torments of longing that I’ve experienced! Shouldn’t a lady who is truly prudent and sensitive be attracted more to me than to Niou? Yet how hard it is to find women of such refined sensibility!
Is it not almost precisely the same Alpha-Gamma dynamic being described?