Barbara Smuts

Although an evolutionary analysis assumes that male aggression against women reflects selection pressures operating during our species’ evolutionary history, it in no way implies that male domination of women is genetically determined, or that frequent male aggression toward women is an immutable feature of human nature. In some societies male aggressive coercion of women is very rare, and even in societies with frequent male aggression toward women, some men do not show these behaviors. Thus, the challenge is to identify the situational factors that predispose members of a particular society toward or away from the use of sexual aggression. [A]n evolutionary frame- work can be very useful in this regard.

Barbara Smuts, ‘Male Aggression Against Women. An Evolutionary Perspective’, Human Nature, vol. 3, no. 1 (March, 1992), pp. 2-3