Download Consuming the Romantic Utopia: Love and the Cultural by Eva Illouz PDF

By Eva Illouz

To what volume are our such a lot romantic moments made up our minds through the portrayal of affection in movie and on television? Is a stroll on a moonlit seashore a second of ideal romance or just a simulation of the typical perfect noticeable repeatedly on billboards and picture monitors? In her specific learn of yankee love within the 20th century, Eva Illouz unravels the mass of pictures that outline our rules of affection and romance, revealing that the adventure of "true" love is deeply embedded within the adventure of purchaser capitalism. Illouz reviews how person conceptions of affection overlap with the area of clichés and photographs she calls the "Romantic Utopia." This utopia lives within the collective mind's eye of the country and is outfitted on pictures that unite amorous and monetary actions within the rituals of relationship, lovemaking, and marriage.
Since the early 1900s, advertisers have tied the acquisition of good looks items, activities vehicles, nutrition beverages, and snack meals to good fortune in love and happiness. Illouz unearths that, finally, each cliché of romance—from an intimate dinner to a dozen pink roses—is built through ads and media photographs that hold forth a democratic ethos of intake: fabric items and happiness can be found to all.
Engaging and witty, Illouz's learn starts off with readings of advertisements, songs, movies, and different public representations of romance and concludes with person interviews with a view to study the ways that mass messages are internalized. Combining wide ancient study, interviews, and postmodern social idea, Illouz brings a magnificent scholarship to her attention-grabbing portrait of affection in America.
"Illouz creates a map of the complicated courting among love and economics in American society. In an analytical kind resembling that of Daniel Bell in its scope and highbrow ambition, she argues that romantic love captures our minds and hearts through promising transgression via intake of relaxation and nature."—Michelle Lamont, writer of cash, Morals, and Manners

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Additional info for Consuming the Romantic Utopia: Love and the Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism

Sample text

The argument that working-class people are "symbolically dominated," that is, at once "dominated" and "deprived," can be made only in the framework of marriage, not in the framework of dating. This in turn suggests the broader idea that the class distribution of the romantic Utopia entails deprivation only in certain situations, but not in others. O N METHODOLOGY The heterogeneity of theoretical traditions from which this work draws goes hand in hand with an equally heterogeneous set of material for Introduction 17 analysis, spanning a wide variety of advertising images, movies, novels, autobiographical narratives, self-help books, magazine advice columns, and interviews.

During the period under discussion, love was presented as a natural and necessary ingredient of marriage at the same time that it was constructed as something outside it. ROMANCE VS. MARRIAGE One tradition in American popular culture has opposed marriage and romance. The opposition between marriage and romance was present in popular lower-class melodrama of the nineteenth century, wherein married couples were shown engaged in knock-down-drag-out domestic battles. But in the context of advertising, this old saw acquired a new edge.

491 concur with this view and compare respondents along this basic dividing line. But my sample does not claim to represent the majority of the romantic experiences to be found even in these urban groups. Respondents with working-class occupations tended to belong to the upper rather than to the lower strata of the working classes. Most of them owned their homes, and approximately half had an average or slightly above-average income. The members of the middle- and uppermiddle class tended to belong to the category of "professionals" (lawyers, doctors, accountants) and cultural specialists (moviemakers, painters, musicians, university professors) rather than to the financial elites or corporate owners and managers.

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