Zainab Iqbal

Since today is Valentines Day, I thought it was only appropriate to write a Valentine-y blog post. In class, we discussed about social construct. Social construct is an idea we make based on experience, environment, and demographic factors. It’s an idea we make based on what we qualify as "normal". When I read the textbook, I learned that love itself is a social construct. Like everyone else in this society, I was brought on to the fact that love is merely a natural feeling. But according to sociology, the idea of "romantic love" just came about. In fact, "the idea of romantic love did not become widespread until fairly recently in our society, and it has never been existed in many other cultures" (Giddens 5). This should hard to believe, but for me, it’s not. Like we discussed in class, love is just an idea. It can mean something to me but mean something totally different to you. And the idea that love doesn’t equal marriage, is also something not hard to believe at all. In fact, the textbook clarify’s my thoughts.

I am reading a book for English titled Empress of the Seven Hills by Kate Quinn. It is an extraordinary book and I recommend you all to read it. This book takes place during the time where there used to be Empires, Emperors, and Empresses. In the book, a patrician named Sabina is old enough to get married, and has many men awaiting at her door everyday, hoping to be the one she chooses. Now all those men don’t love her. They want to marry her because of her high status. Sabina’s father is a Senator, and being a Senator is a very noble- high status job. None of the men awaiting at her door could care less about "love". They just want to marry her so they can get higher positions in the government. Actually, Sabina ends up falling in love with her dad’s bodyguard, but chooses to marry the Emperor’s stepson just so she can get to travel the world.

When I first read that, I was surprised. Because how can you not marry someone out of love? But after understanding that love is merely a social construct, it makes so much more sense now. What love means to one, means something else to another. Because love is just an idea.

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2 thoughts on “Zainab Iqbal

  1. I fully agree with the notion that love represents different values in a diverse society. In fact, a person from a large group may regard love as an important element of society and others do not have the same view. As a member of a diverse community, I have learned that people have different perceptions because of the following reasons: they have different culture, they belong to a different social class, they have different religion and education. For example, some western or eastern families consider arranged marriages as an important cultural tradition. In addition, some people believe that love marriages are not acceptable due to a difference in religion and culture. How social class and education change the meaning love? Perhaps, love represents a financial benefit or intellectual benefit.
    In my opinion, love is not an idea developed by society because researchers haven’t figured out a mechanism to explain it. I believe that love is interpret in many different ways because people have different moral values, different cultures and so on. How you think multicultural marriages and arranged marriages impact society?
    Thank you

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  2. I agree as well that love is but a social construct that is perceived in different ways from many different cultures. To some, love may only have family ties while socially meaning nothing, and at the other end of the spectrum there is love within family as well as social love between unrelated people. There is no universal concept for what love is, however I do believe that everyone has a take on it even though they may not have the same idea of what it is. Whether it is all around you or not insight people are entitled to their opinion. It can also be argued that “Valentine’s Day” is a marketing skeem to sell more chocolates, flowers, teddy bears, etc. Similar to christmas was passed off as the celebration of St. Valentine (christmas created by coca-cola). How do you think that peoples conceptualization of what love is, affects there understanding of the socially constructed holiday of what is Valentines day? To some people it means so much and to others it means nothing.

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