The Literary Salon

A free salon wherein patrons and passers-by may view or contribute ideas on literary and generally intellectual matters. The blog will strive to maintain its commitment to wit, humour and perspicuous analysis.

My Photo
Name:
Location: Toronto, now Ottawa, Ont, Canada

Thursday, February 14, 2008

V-day (Valentine's Day)

Sounds ominously like D-day.

As tempting as it is, I'm not going to rant about this day since most of my reasons are as clicheed as the cliches they seek to denounce.

I will, however, for the benifit and edification of readers, link to this interesting article a friend sent to me. It is a book review in French, but it essentially argues that the monogamous couple is an historical accident which owes much to Christianity.

One does not have to be Michel Foucault to understand that many of our courtship rituals and even familial structures are historically contingent. Marx himself believed that the family, presumably the 19th century working class nuclear one, was an ideological production (Marx himself was very conservative when it came to family). I'm not sure how true this, but there is probably at least a grain of truth to it. Monogamous, married couples did exist in the classical world, for example: Socrates, for instance, was married, but this did not prevent him, or others like him, from having recreational, casual relations with younger men.

I think, however, it is safe to say that our culture, especially now, places a greater emphasis on monogamy than ever before.

3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

is this a bad thing?

yat

5:03 PM  
Anonymous piouslabours said...

It's neither bad nor good, if you ask me. I haven't read Mr. Attali's book, so I can't tell what he thinks either, though, being a frenchman, he probably thinks it's a bad thing :-)

2:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

what did you do for v-day?

yat

8:18 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home