Love In Today’s SocietySteve CareyIntroductionA key to understanding Sociology and the Social Sciences in general isto evaluate subjects through time and compare and contrast characteristics thathave changed and those that have remained the same. For this assignment I haveelected to access three sources dealing with love; in three distinct timeperiods in the modern era. First we will survey one of the first popularmediums for the expression of love; that of poetry. I have chosen a poem by W.
H. Auden to represent the early portion of this century- specifically the 1930s and1940s. I knew I had to include a song from my idol Jim Morrison. Not only ishe the perfect voice of the volatile sex revolution of the 1960s and 1970s; hiswork captures the profile of a rock star who undoubtedly acquired hisdomineering attitude from the endless worship of submissive women. Lastly weenter the modern era with a article from my favorite magazine Men’s Health onthe mistakes a man must avoid in order to please his lover. As we shall see,the increased freedom is very interesting in our first representation to thelast.Order now
My goal is to show how love has changed. I hope to show what is acceptedin our society today, compared with only several decades ago. ApplicationMy sources run the gamut of ideas in the subject of love. I thinkAuden’s poem is the best representation of what has been termed courtly love. This seems logical, since this Romantic Era type of love was a pre-cursor towhat we know as modern love. The author takes the troubadour role in hiscrooning style of praising his love’s qualities.
He idealizes his mate and issatisfied just being in the same room as she. There are not any ulterior motivesevident. Auden would be categorized as a heavenly lover, in that his love ismore lofty and sacred. There is definite contrast to this idealism though.
Inhis last lines the author, without reservation tells of his sorrow at his lossof her to another. Morrison’s Love Her Madly could almost be interpreted as a form oflimerance. He has this extreme fondness for his subject: Don’t ya love hermadly? Anyone who knows the story of Jim Morrison knows that the topic of loveand all that comes with it was an integral facet of his being. He is a goodexample of love in the context of a super-star entertainer. Morrison’s songs,and most others found in the entertainment world cannot compare with reality.
These people do not lead normal lives. Their depiction of such things as lovemay even be accurate portrayals of their lives, but should not be taken torepresent society as a whole. Love was quite important to Morrison- providedthat he had it often and with different partners. One woman could never containhis sexual urges. In this reality many sociological concepts are found.
Morrison cohabited with numerous women, mainly his life-long steady girlfriendPamela. Morrison’s male domineering attitude is evident in his line “Wanna beher daddy. ” While women were beginning to experience more equality during thisperiod, males were still seen as dominant. He does show signs of compassionwith his line: Don’t ya love her as she’s walking out the door.
Likeshe did one thousand times before. This shows that he was not as worried about being a man as some may have thought. He lost his love once again and he isnot afraid to admit it. Even so, Morrison’s primary style of love wasdefinitely ludus. He had no reservations about playing the field. Pre-marital sex was easily brushed aside by Morrison in this era when society wasmore accepting of free love.
Our Men’s Health article is best understood by using the two gender’ssexual scripts- or blueprints of our sexuality, to sort out society’s expectedroles. 50 Ways To Peeve Your Lover does a decent job of informing men of themistakes that women recognize in their sexual demeanor. Due to sexual scriptsthemselves, there are many learned behaviors and attitudes that men possess thatthey have always known as the best way. Men, due to the fact that they areless open to criticism and less willing to express their feelings, they aremore subject to doing things the wrong way and never even realizing it. No-noeslike squeezing a woman’s breast because they think it turns her on, failing toask her questions during sex, not complementing her, and other forms of improper etiquette may be what is holding back many couples from happier andmore successful relationships. CritiqueThese three representations of love were all the norms in their time butwould be out of context if switched to another.
People may appreciate Auden’ssimplicity and purity of loves’ demeanor, but it is safe to say that it wouldnot do very well in today’s’ society that urns for lust and sex over honest love. Society wants to be entertained and taken to a fantasy world- one that isdifferent and more exciting than their own. In the early 20ieth century andbefore I’m sure that people were satisfied reading a poem like this for thesimple fact that it was a depiction of their feelings at the time- but writtenby a person that could write more eloquently than themselves. They wereentertained by such works because they captured their mood in words. As musicevolved with society along with it, the poet took on a new form of expression. Music was perfect- it has often been thought of as sexual in nature.
Wordsalong with music symbolized an era of increased freedom and experimentation asthe walls that portrayed sex as “a bad thing” began to crumble. Morrison’sportrayal of loose standards of sex, while exaggerated for society in general,are still accurate in that this was a more liberal time than previous decades. Songs such as this made it more accepted for teens and other impressionableyoungsters both to have sex and see it in a kinder light. Articles such as our Men’s Health example have become the norm intoday’s increasingly open and less moral society. While the church’s forbiddingof such an open discussion of sex was more adhered to in the past, people todayare more comfortable talking about this and other topics that they want to hearabout. We have already realized the myth that just because sex was not asdiscussed back then did not mean that people refrained from talking about it anddoing it in secret.
In fact, we know that ancient cultures such as those inItaly had an even greater sex culture than we do today. Many will say that thisattitude is a better approach because it gets feelings out in the open, insteadof keeping them locked up inside. Thus people are more honest with each otherand can work their difficulties out before they explode. ConclusionIt is definitely true that attitudes on love have changed in the lastdecade.
Social structures and norms have fluctuated and have influencedpeople’s decisions in their own lives as well as their perceptions of others. Many people would rather return to the innocent times of Auden where loveseemingly was true and carried no strings. There does seem to be a problem withthe increased fragmentation of society in regards to finding love today. Goneare the days when you married your high school sweet-heart and lived happilyever after. Increased mobility and the ease of travel has left love moreavailable and open.
People need more help today from outside services likedating hotlines and the help of marriage counselors and physchologists to sortout their troubles. It follows though that society is more complex andtherefore better. Women have more rights and more say in society. There is nodoubt that females were exploited more in the past than today. While society’sattitudes have changed over the years and will continue to change, one thingremains the same: love is a driving force in our lives.