Did cavemen hit cavewomen?

I have argued, not much based on sex differences in the skull.

I have just found this paper:

Evolution and the psychology of intergroup conflict: the male warrior hypothesis.

It contains this quote which supports the idea that – at least in intergroup conflict – women would not have been targeted much for violence:

” … women are a reproductive resource to be competed for (rather than against). This implies that males should not only be the agents of intergroup conflict as we have suggested above, but also the direct targets of intergroup conflict in terms of prejudice, hostility and aggression (the outgroup male target hypothesis).”

Cartoon supplied by a commenter:



8 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by katmandutu on November 26, 2015 at 1:08 am

    I never believed that they did. Didn’t make sense to me. The men would be occupied hunting and looking after the family. I would imagine that the women would have been obedient and submissive, dependent on their men for their very survival.

    http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_82jYjcjk6wM/TG6F5GjXmmI/AAAAAAAAD4Q/0epnyxOH6cA/s1600/date_caveman_home_midnight_drag_912745.jpg 😉


    • Posted by Julian O'Dea on November 26, 2015 at 2:10 am

      There is a hint in that paper that the women, especially if they had young children, would have tried hard to make friends with any outgroup men. Women tend to be “spoils of war”.

      I don’t think the men would have hit their own women either, because they would have been too valuable to risk damaging them.

      Great cartoon. I think I will put that into the post.


  2. […] Something else I wrote on this: Did cavemen hit cavewomen? […]


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