In the world of social dynamics, an Alpha Female is a woman who is self-assured and confident, who has a high standing in her own social circle. She is someone who is known for her assertive and independent nature, and for leading the way in any given situation.
“Alpha Females” have great influence within their social circles and can be seen as role models by those around them. They are often strong-willed and determined individuals who are not afraid to stand up for themselves or take charge of a situation when needed. They know how to make their voices heard, and this often makes them respected by others. An “Alpha Female” may be someone who is highly successful in her career or someone who has achieved much in her personal life.
The hierarchy of an “Alpha Female” differs from that of an alpha male; while an Alpha Male might be seen as a leader in terms of power and authority, an “Alpha Female”‘s power comes more from her ability to influence people through her strong personality and charisma. An “Alpha Female” is someone who can inspire those around her with her strength and determination, while still maintaining a sense of kindness and compassion towards others.
Alpha, Beta, Omega are greek letters, usually assigned to animals in a type of hierarchy, often a social hierarchy.
This classification originates from the 1980s, specifically from the 1982 book of Frans de Waal, titled Chimpanzee Politics: Power and Sex Among Apes. It is here, de Waal classified members of a species by terms like Alpha Male and “Alpha Female” for the first time, focusing on their position in the social hierarchy. His work also highlighted parallels among human behaviors in social hierarchy.
Alpha Males were described as the dominant specimens, who dictated the rules of the group, while Beta Males were defined as the follower type, who obey their superiors. A third alternative was also deifned in the book, with the term Omega Male, with a sort of “lone wolf” behavior.
Accordingly, “Alpha Female” was defined as the dominant female in a herd or a group, who showed significant leadership skills.
By the 2000s, the expression became widely recognized and used in several contexts.
People would refer to women with pioneering achievements in their respective fields as “Alpha Female” while at the same time, the stereotypical popular high school girl would also be labeled as such.
It was first defined on Urban Dictionary on September 23rd, 2005, with the entries accumulating over the years.
“Alpha Female” was further popularized by professional wrestler Marie Kristin Gabert who adopted the moniker between the years 2014 and 2015.
- Sumra MK – Masculinity, femininity, and leadership: Taking a closer look at the alpha female
- Urban Dictionary – Alpha Female