Relationship advice from 19th century novels

There’s no doubt about the fact that art influences the way we experience reality. In fact, art is so influential that it affects the way we understand reality. Literature, Hollywood flicks, advertising or pop songs change our perception of love and what to expect from our partners.

Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet was famously meant to be a parody of sorts. “These violent delights…” It is a cautionary tale as to how dangerous can be for us to idealize a romantic partner, how perilous it is to give up on everything for them. Yet people find the pair’s death as “romantic.”

Another example? The Great Gatsby. People upload quotes from this novel everywhere, as if the love story between Daisy and Gatsby is romance at its finest. It’s not. Daisy does not love him as much as he does her. Also, this so called “love” corrupts Gatsby to the point that he is nothing without her. Everything he does, it’s because of her.

Is this what we’d truly want from love? Is this what we understand by love?



4 thoughts on “Relationship advice from 19th century novels

  1. I think I got my best advice from Gone With the Wind: Don’t you know there can’t be any happiness except when like marries like.
    In my experience opposites may attract initally but if you’re in it for the long haul you need someone who thinks like you.

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