From Time‘s new cover: If women had known that more power would be bundled with less happiness, would they have knowingly chosen this bundle? Seems to me the obvious answer is: yes, if they had made the choice incrementally and in private, and hence in near mode. But perhaps
What a joke.
So if there is a decrease in the happiness of women, it could be because, not in spite of, their increasing power. They have higher expectations, and better circumstances, probably meaning it takes larger successes to make them happy.
It seems easy to trade wealth and power for hapiness. It seems much more difficult to do the opposite, if need be. Therefore the acquisition of wealth and power may be a better long-term investment to overall happiness.
...and isn't this what people more or less do? They work hard to provide for themselves and their loved ones, and then they retire and try to trade that wealth for happiness.
The romance novel industry keeps a close watch on what plot lines do and do not sell; and after decades of intense scrutiny of the sales figures for different novels, they have concluded that women definitely like books about bad boys.
How recently is "recently evolved"? Wuthering Heights was published in 1847.
Power and happiness are in such different ontological categories that it might not make sense to talk about choosing between them. Power is something you can possess. Happiness is a momentary reward signal for a positive change in your circumstances; it's more like the first derivative of your utility function. Improving your circumstances makes you happy temporarily; but unless that improvement facilitates future improvements, it probably makes it harder for you to be happy and easier to be sad in the future.
It's fun to think that the male provider, female homemaker, nuclear family model dates back to before the 1950's, but it isn't really true. Humans relied much more on extended families and tribes, and women did a substantial portion of food acquisition.
There's also little reason to believe that "bad boys" did, in fact, bring back more proverbial bacon, or that they would consistently provide more of it to their mate/offspring.
More likely explanations for the women liking "bad boys" involve availability bias, viewing a non-representative sample, and recently evolved cultural concepts of masculinity/femininity.
Did you see the graph? I would see love to see you debating Liberman (misspelled his name the first time) on this point.
Because power and happiness are mutually exclusive? Using the word "bundled" does not draw a correlation. Also, even if you are able to illustrate a correlation, it certainly would not be a causation. People in general, not just women, are less happy now.
thx much for the data, Ewout. Figure 1 says it all.
People seem to choose other things over happiness all the time
I attribute this largely to genes.
Why are women attracted to Bad Boys--the very worst choice if what they're seeking is a happy marriage?
Because bad boys bring in a lot of mastodon meat. So women who are naturally attracted to them and mate with them will have sons who bring in a lot of mastodon meat. And so on.
Ditto: bad boys will be better at eradicating neighboring tribes, and taking the adolescent women as "wives." So women who are naturally attracted to them and mate with them will have sons who... You get the idea.
But women today don't like mastodon meat, or gang rape. Even so, they keep choosing them over happy marriages...
I don't find that post very persuasive.
Do you really think that's enough? It's not like people are going to say, 'oh, *assume* I know the consequences? Gosh, I was just going to make the irrational choice, but I guess I'll do better now!' Why would just having some abstract, disputable survey results significantly change anything?
There's another possible reason for this.
In what sense would women have been able to make the choice collectively? I do not understand this option. How are you envisioning it? I mean, people being individuals and all has historically made it rather hard for them to come to an agreement when there are at least two subpopulations in vociferous disagreement. So I am unclear in what sense you're lumping women together to make this far-sighted choice.
How useful or relevant is this "happiness," folk psychological construct? It seems to me very decomposable. "Power" is a matter of access to high quality mates.