Search results for: consuming-the-romantic-utopia

Consuming the Romantic Utopia

Author : Eva Illouz
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The study begins with readings of ads, songs, films and other public representations of romance and concludes with individual interviews in order to analyze the ways in which mass messages are internalized.

Consuming the Romantic Utopia

Author : Eva Illouz
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Consuming the Romantic Utopia

Author : Eva Illouz
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To what extent are our most romantic moments determined by the portrayal of love in film and on TV? Is a walk on a moonlit beach a moment of perfect romance or simply a simulation of the familiar ideal seen again and again on billboards and movie screens? In her unique study of American love in the twentieth century, Eva Illouz unravels the mass of images that define our ideas of love and romance, revealing that the experience of "true" love is deeply embedded in the experience of consumer capitalism. Illouz studies how individual conceptions of love overlap with the world of clichés and images she calls the "Romantic Utopia." This utopia lives in the collective imagination of the nation and is built on images that unite amorous and economic activities in the rituals of dating, lovemaking, and marriage. Since the early 1900s, advertisers have tied the purchase of beauty products, sports cars, diet drinks, and snack foods to success in love and happiness. Illouz reveals that, ultimately, every cliché of romance—from an intimate dinner to a dozen red roses—is constructed by advertising and media images that preach a democratic ethos of consumption: material goods and happiness are available to all. Engaging and witty, Illouz's study begins with readings of ads, songs, films, and other public representations of romance and concludes with individual interviews in order to analyze the ways in which mass messages are internalized. Combining extensive historical research, interviews, and postmodern social theory, Illouz brings an impressive scholarship to her fascinating portrait of love in America.

The End of Love

Author : Eva Illouz
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Western culture has endlessly represented the ways in which love miraculously erupts in people's lives, the mythical moment in which one knows someone is destined for us; the feverish waiting for a phone call or an email, the thrill that runs our spine at the mere thought of him or her. Yet, a culture that has so much to say about love is virtually silent on the no less mysterious moments when we avoid falling in love, where we fall out of love, when the one who kept us awake at night now leaves us indifferent, or when we hurry away from those who excited us a few months or even a few hours before. In The End of Love, Eva Illouz documents the multifarious ways in which relationships end. She argues that if modern love was once marked by the freedom to enter sexual and emotional bonds according to one's will and choice, contemporary love has now become characterized by practices of non-choice, the freedom to withdraw from relationships. Illouz dubs this process by which relationships fade, evaporate, dissolve, and break down "unloving." While sociology has classically focused on the formation of social bonds, The End of Love makes a powerful case for studying why and how social bonds collapse and dissolve. Particularly striking is the role that capitalism plays in practices of non-choice and "unloving." The unmaking of social bonds, she argues, is connected to contemporary capitalism that is characterized by practices of non-commitment and non-choice, practices that enable the quick withdrawal from a transaction and the quick realignment of prices and the breaking of loyalties. Unloving and non-choice have in turn a profound impact on society and economics as they explain why people may be having fewer children, increasingly living alone, and having less sex. The End of Love presents a profound and original analysis of the effects of capitalism and consumer culture on personal relationships and of what the dissolution of personal relationships means for capitalism.

Why Love Hurts

Author : Eva Illouz
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Few of us have been spared the agonies of intimate relationships. They come in many shapes: loving a man or a woman who will not commit to us, being heartbroken when we're abandoned by a lover, engaging in Sisyphean internet searches, coming back lonely from bars, parties, or blind dates, feeling bored in a relationship that is so much less than we had envisaged - these are only some of the ways in which the search for love is a difficult and often painful experience. Despite the widespread and almost collective character of these experiences, our culture insists they are the result of faulty or insufficiently mature psyches. For many, the Freudian idea that the family designs the pattern of an individual's erotic career has been the main explanation for why and how we fail to find or sustain love. Psychoanalysis and popular psychology have succeeded spectacularly in convincing us that individuals bear responsibility for the misery of their romantic and erotic lives. The purpose of this book is to change our way of thinking about what is wrong in modern relationships. The problem is not dysfunctional childhoods or insufficiently self-aware psyches, but rather the institutional forces shaping how we love. The argument of this book is that the modern romantic experience is shaped by a fundamental transformation in the ecology and architecture of romantic choice. The samples from which men and women choose a partner, the modes of evaluating prospective partners, the very importance of choice and autonomy and what people imagine to be the spectrum of their choices: all these aspects of choice have transformed the very core of the will, how we want a partner, the sense of worth bestowed by relationships, and the organization of desire. This book does to love what Marx did to commodities: it shows that it is shaped by social relations and institutions and that it circulates in a marketplace of unequal actors.

Oprah Winfrey and the Glamour of Misery

Author : Eva Illouz
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-- Amy B. Jordan, Director of the Media and the Developing Mind Sector, Annenberg Public Policy Center, University of Pennsylvania...

Saving the Modern Soul

Author : Eva Illouz
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The language of psychology is all-pervasive in American culture—from The Sopranos to Oprah, from the abundance of self-help books to the private consulting room, and from the support group to the magazine advice column. Saving the Modern Soul examines the profound impact of therapeutic discourse on our lives and on our contemporary notions of identity. Eva Illouz plumbs today's particular cultural moment to understand how and why psychology has secured its place at the core of modern identity. She examines a wide range of sources to show how self-help culture has transformed contemporary emotional life and how therapy complicates individuals' lives even as it claims to dissect their emotional experiences and heal trauma.

The History of Emotions

Author : Jan Plamper
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The history of emotions is one of the fastest growing fields in current historical debate, and this is the first book-length introduction to the field, synthesizing the current research, and offering direction for future study. The History of Emotions is organized around the debate between social constructivist and universalist theories of emotion that has shaped most emotions research in a variety of disciplines for more than a hundred years: social constructivists believe that emotions are largely learned and subject to historical change, while universalists insist on the timelessness and pan-culturalism of emotions. In historicizing and problematizing this binary, Jan Plamper opens emotions research beyond constructivism and universalism; he also maps a vast terrain of thought about feelings in anthropology, philosophy, sociology, linguistics, art history, political science, the life sciences; from nineteenth-century experimental psychology to the latest affective neuroscience; and history, from ancient times to the present day.

Love Entwined

Author : Helen Sheumaker
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Using a wide array of evidence drawn from poetry, fiction, diaries, letters, and examples of hairwork, Love Entwined traces the widespread popularity of the craft from the late eighteenth to the early twentieth century.

Intimacy on the Internet

Author : Lauren Rosewarne
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The focus of this book is on the media representations of the use of the Internet in seeking intimate connections—be it a committed relationship, a hook-up, or a community in which to dabble in fringe sexual practices. Popular culture (film, narrative television, the news media, and advertising) present two very distinct pictures of the use of the Internet as related to intimacy. From news reports about victims of online dating, to the presentation of the desperate and dateless, the perverts and the deviants, a distinct frame for the intimacy/Internet connection is negativity. In some examples however, a changing picture is emerging. The ubiquitousness of Internet use today has meant a slow increase in comparatively more positive representations of successful online romances in the news, resulting in more positive-spin advertising and a more even-handed presence of such liaisons in narrative television and film. Both the positive and the negative media representations are categorised and analysed in this book to explore what they reveal about the intersection of gender, sexuality, technology and the changing mores regarding intimacy.

Romantic Love

Author : Yolanda van Ede
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Edinburgh German Yearbook 11

Author : Helmut Schmitz
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New essays exploring the resurgence of the theme of romantic relationships and love in German literature since around the turn of the millennium.

Love and Society

Author : Swen Seebach
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Why does love matter? Love and Society discusses the meaning and importance of love for contemporary society. Love is not only an emotion that occurs in our intimate relationships; it is a special emotion that allows us to relate to each other in a lasting fashion, to create out of our individual pasts a shared past, which enables us to project a shared future. Bringing together the idea of Simmel’s second order forms with theories of love, this insightful volume shows that the answer to why love is so central to society can be found in the social transformation of the last two centuries. It also explains how we can build our strongest social bonds on the fragility of an emotions thanks to the creation of "special moments" (love rituals) and "intimate stories" (love myths) that are central to the weaving of lasting social bonds. Going to the cinema, reading a book together or sharing songs are forms of weaving bonds of love and part of the cycle of love. But love is not only shared between two people; the desire and the search for love is something we share with almost all members of society. With rich empirical data, an analysis of love’s transformation in modernity, and a critical engagement with classical and contemporary theorists, this book provides a lively discussion on the meaning and importance of love for today’s society. It will be of interest to undergraduate and postgraduate students and postdoctoral researchers who are interested in fields such as Sociology of Emotions, Sociological Theory and Sociology of Morality.

Utopia in Performance

Author : Jill Dolan
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"Jill Dolan is the theatre's most astute critic, and this new book is perhaps her most important. Utopia in Performance argues with eloquence and insight how theatre makes a difference, and in the process demonstrates that scholarship matters, too. It is a book that readers will cherish and hold close as a personal favorite, and that scholars will cite for years to come." ---David Román, University of Southern California What is it about performance that draws people to sit and listen attentively in a theater, hoping to be moved and provoked, challenged and comforted? In Utopia in Performance, Jill Dolan traces the sense of visceral, emotional, and social connection that we experience at such times, connections that allow us to feel for a moment not what a better world might look like, but what it might feel like, and how that hopeful utopic sentiment might become motivation for social change. She traces these "utopian performatives" in a range of performances, including the solo performances of feminist artists Holly Hughes, Deb Margolin, and Peggy Shaw; multicharacter solo performances by Lily Tomlin, Danny Hoch, and Anna Deavere Smith; the slam poetry event Def Poetry Jam; The Laramie Project; Blanket, a performance by postmodern choreographer Ann Carlson; Metamorphoses by Mary Zimmerman; and Deborah Warner's production of Medea starring Fiona Shaw. While the book richly captures moments of "feeling utopia" found within specific performances, it also celebrates the broad potential that performance has to provide a forum for being human together; for feeling love, hope, and commonality in particular and historical (rather than universal and transcendent) ways.

The Communism of Love

Author : Richard Gilman-Opalsky
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Exploring the meanings and powers of love from ancient Greece to the present day, Richard Gilman-Opalsky argues that what is called “love” by the best thinkers who have approached the subject is in fact the beating heart of communism—understood as a way of living, not as a form of government. Along the way, he reveals with clarity that the capitalist way of assigning value to things is incapable of appreciating what humans value most. Capitalism cannot value the experiences and relationships that make our lives worth living and can only destroy love by turning it into a commodity. The Communism of Love follows the struggles of love in different contexts of race, class, gender, and sexuality, and shows how the aspiration for love is as close as we may get to a universal communist aspiration.

The End of Love

Author : Eva Illouz
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Introduction: from choice to non-choice -- Premodern courtship, social certainty and the rise of negative relationships -- Confusing sex -- The rise of ontological uncertainty -- A freedom with many limits -- Divorce as a negative relationship -- Conclusion: negative relations and the butterfly politics of sex -- Acknowledgments -- Notes -- Bibliography.

After Happily Ever After

Author : Maria San Filippo
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Explores romantic comedy’s revitalizing response to shifting sexual and social mores of the past decade.

The Materiality of Love

Author : Anna Malinowska
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Drawing on love studies and research in material cultures, this book seeks to re-examine love through materiality studies, especially their recent incarnations, new materialism and object-oriented philosophy, to spark a debate on the relationship between love, objects and forms of materializing affection. It focuses on love as a material form and traces connections between feelings and materiality, especially in relation to the changing notion of the material as marked by digital culture, as well as the developments in understanding the nature of non-human affect. It provides insight into how materiality, in its broadest sense, impacts the understanding of the meanings and practices of love today and reversely, how love contributes to the production and transformation of the material world.

Enchanting a Disenchanted World

Author : George Ritzer
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The only book to connect the everyday world of the 20-something undergraduate consumer with sound sociological analysis of the world of consumption Enchanting a Disenchanted World, Third Edition examines Disney, malls, cruise lines, Las Vegas, the world wide web, Planet Hollywood, credit cards, and all the other ways we now consume. Thoroughly updated to reflect the recent economic recession and the impact of the internet, bestselling author George Ritzer continues to explore this book’s central thesis: that our society has undergone fundamental change because of the way and the level at which we consume. This Third Edition demonstrates how we have created new "cathedrals" of consumption (places that enchant us so as to entice us to stay longer and consume more) while continuing to take capitalism to a new level. These places of consumption, whether in our homes, the mall, or cyberspace, are in a constant state of "enchanting the disenchanted," luring us through new spectacles because their rational qualities are both necessary and deadening at the same time. New and Hallmark Features Offers a unique analysis of the world of consumption, especially the settings in which consumption takes place Discusses the recent global economic recession throughout Offers rich details on consuming in such places as Las Vegas, Disney World, on cruise ships, in Wal-Mart, at McDonald’s, and, new to this edition, on the Web Includes a wide range of theoretical perspectives—Marxian, Weberian, critical theory, postmodern theory—as well as a number of concepts such as hyperconsumption, implosion, simulation, and time and space to show students how sociological theory can be applied to everyday phenomena

Romance in Post Socialist Chinese Television

Author : Huike Wen
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This book is about how the representations of romantic love in television reflect the change and the dilemma of the dominant values in post-socialist Chinese mainstream culture. These values mainly center on the impact of individualism, consumerism, capitalism, and neoliberalism, often referred to as western culture, on the perception of romantic love and self-realization in China. The book focuses on how romantic love, which plays a vital role in China’s ideologically highly restricted social environment by empowering people with individual choice, change, and social mobility, must struggle and compromise with the reality, specifically the values and problems emerging in a transitional China. The book also examines how the representation of romantic love celebrates ideals—individual freedom, passion, and gender equality—and promises changes based on individual diligence and talent while simultaneously obstructing the fulfillment of these ideals.