Anti-Aristocratic Rebel Princess — Lady Diana, the Gatherer

Princess Diana was a rebel, a very soft one, a rule-breaker nonetheless. So much so, that she is even thought to have a great influence on Generation Z. Dedicated social media channels ladydirevengelooks on Instagram. I am not too interested in fashion, including passive-aggressive rebellious clothing. However, I am interested in Diana as someone not fitting in, especially not into the world of royalty.

I have argued that Albert Einstein fits the profile of an evolutionary hunter type: egalitarian, anti-authoritarian, anti-establishment, and a mind perfectly adapted to following tracks and recognizing physical patterns. Princess Diana was a similar type: a gatherer. So, what does it mean to be a gatherer rather than a hunter type? Well, of course, there are a lot of similarities, we both value freedom, openness and universal fairness. Gatherer types are more people-oriented than hunter types who are more task and thing-oriented. So, gatherer types are very high on benevolence and caring, which Diana certainly was as documented by her countless charitable engagements.

However, neither her anti-traditional clothing nor her charity makes her interesting as a gatherer type, it’s her not fitting into a hierarchical and traditional farmer-herder world. Aristocracy and a hierarchical view of human nature go together, and it was that she was loath to: a view of a world in which some people are better than others.

Diana’s anti-aristocratic stance was visible in countless examples:

The British think tank Cultural Dynamic has conducted studies of people’s social attitudes and divided them into three clusters: settlers, prospectors and pioneers. Settlers and prospectors were the ones who agreed most with the statement that the world is divided into two classes: winners and losers. The third cluster, pioneers, strongly disagreed with this statement. Where do those attitudes come from? Could it be that people are actually evolutionarily programmed to have these attitudes? I have hypothesised that they come from our ancestral modes of subsistence (farming, herding, and foraging respectively) and are indeed evolutionarily entrenched:

Princess Diana was a gatherer type through and through to whom hierarchy, tradition, wealth and obedience meant very little. It was this environment that was toxic to her and caused her mental health problems and eating disorder. By the way, both are common in neurodiverse people who tend to show other typical hunter-gatherer traits (struggling with authority, etc.) as well. Neurotypical people tend not to understand the struggles of such hunter-gatherer types. Didn’t Diana have it all: wealth, glory, power and success? She had all of the stuff she did not need a lot of, but she didn’t have a lot of what she needed most: acceptance, love and understanding.

For more check out my books:

The hunter-gatherer neurotribe: gifted, geeks, aspies and other aliens in this world

Foragers, Farmers and Pastoralists : How three tribes have been shaping civilization since the Neolithic

Originally published at on April 23, 2022.



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store