Bad boy (archetype)

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The bad boy is a cultural archetype similar[citation needed] to the historic terms rake or cad: a male who behaves badly, especially within societal norms.


There is no consensus on the exact meaning of the term. One article in The Independent compared the term "bad boys" with men who had a particular combination of personality traits, sometimes referred to as a "dark triad", and reported that a study found that such men were likely to have a greater number of sexual affairs.[1]

The stereotypical "bad boy" was described by Kristina Grish in her book Addickted as "the irresistible rogue who has the dizzying ability to drive women wild" with a "laissez-faire attitude about life and love".[2] Kristina Lloyd, author of Split, says that "we [are] meant to take what we want from the twenty-first century's kinky candyshop of sex", and that at the end of the day many will "prefer bad and debased over naughty but nice".[3] Frances Cohen Praver, author of Daring Wives, claims that "Women tend to split off their detested parts like hate, envy, and bad-girl aspects", so that "bad-girl parts stay behind closed doors, only to come out to play with bad-boy lovers".[4] Praver says that there is "a split between love for men they see as good, dependable and reliable, and desire for men they see as exciting, reckless, and dangerous...bad boys".[5][full citation needed]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Connor, Steve (June 19, 2008). "Why women really do love self-obsessed psychopaths". The Independent (London). Retrieved April 26, 2010. 
  2. ^ Kristina Grish, Addickted: 12 Steps to Kicking Your Bad Boy Habit (2007) p. xiii
  3. ^ Kristina Lloyd, Split (2007) p. 160
  4. ^ Frances Cohen Praver, Daring Wives (2006) p. 60
  5. ^ Praver, p. 56-7