Encyclopedia of Evolutionary Psychological Science

Living Edition
| Editors: Todd K. Shackelford, Viviana A. Weekes-Shackelford

Intrasexual Selection

Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-16999-6_1406-1



Intrasexual selection can refer to the act of competing with members of one’s own sex (for status, tangible resources, or directly for access to mates) as well as the evolutionary process that shapes the traits employed in this competition.


In November of 2016, a striking image began making its way around the internet, two Alaskan bull moose, with their antlers locked, drowned, and frozen together at the presumptive site of their final combat – a stark illustration of the risks that animals will endure, or even pursue, in response to intrasexual selection pressures. Intrasexual selection refers to the within-sex component of the broader process of sexual selection (Darwin 1871). Whereas the other half, intersexual selection, is characterized by the choice of mates by the opposite sex, intrasexual selection refers to competition with members of the same sex. Among humans, the particular nature of the competition...

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Nova Southeastern UniversityFort LauderdaleUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Douglas Sellers
    • 1
  1. 1.Penn State Worthington ScrantonScrantonUSA