Pub. date: 2007 | Online Pub. Date: March 15, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412939645 | Print ISBN: 9781412916080 | Online ISBN: 9781412939645| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this handbook
Chapter 26: The Sociology of Love, Courtship, and Dating
The sociology of love, courtship, and dating The question of “What is love?” has piqued curiosity and engendered frustration for much of history. The exasperated answer that you “just know” when you are in love is reflected in the body of sociological literature on the phenomenon. Sociologists do not seem to agree on a uniform definition, although there are several competing but complementary typologies that attempt to pin down those emotional and behavioral states that add up to romantic “love.” Love scholarship can be roughly divided into two philosophical camps: (1) that which argues love must have certain components to be genuine, for instance, to differentiate it from mere liking or lust, and (2) that which suggests that love is a publicly informed but privately experienced state that is whatever the person “in love” believes it to be. Research on romantic love attachments often addresses the behaviors used in dating ...