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Sådan er det at elske. En kulturanalyse af parforhold

Such is it to Love. A Cultural Analysis of Couple's Relationships
  • Sarah Holst Kjaer
Publiceringsår: 2009
Språk: Danska
Dokumenttyp: Doktorsavhandling
Förlag: Museum Tusculanum Press


At the turn of the Century the man/woman-relationship was debated in media, public leisure life and in the genre of self help literature. The “Heterosexual Couple” was – and is - portrayed in a number of culturally fixed and thematic ways, often conceptualized via the dichotomies of Male and Female, harmony and conflict, the traditional and the modern, ideal and reality.

In this thesis different epochs in the modern and late modern European and Scandinavian cultural history are included in order to examine how philosophies of the social life, scientific categorizations and material definitions of everyday life have added a range of belief-systems (fantasy and knowledge) to the interpretation of a present day man/woman-relationship.

The cultural and narrative analysis takes its point of departure in interviews with a sub culture of late modern, urban and reflexive males and females in relationships. The study is founded in a hermeneutical ideal where layers of meaning are unfolded from the utterances spoken in the interviews. The analysis explores the interrelatedness and correspondences between a number of early and present cultural texts such as ethnographic studies, newspapers, public events and scientific literature in which versions of men and women’s relationships are promoted. The interpretation aims at investigating a plausible genealogy between these texts and through the method of abduction it seeks an understanding of how present days’ “established” and “agreed upon” attitudes, norms, ideals and anti-ideals of the man/woman-relationship have been produced over time and in various cultural and scientific terrains of knowledge.

This cultural analysis even tries to establish an emotional relationship between definitions of everyday materiality, artifacts and technologies and the social life between the man and the woman. In order to interpret the romantic couples’ numerous ways of creating an intimate relationship, the analysis thus includes the context and materiality of a particular situation. The situation is regarded as a “cultural third” defined by historical and social meaning that implicitly and explicitly arrange and stage the sentiments of the couple. Through a multi-facetted analysis of the couple's everyday life, leisure performances, habits and rituals, rules and conducts of life, the interpersonal situations such as shopping at the department store, doing the dishes, undertaking the bathroom routines, laying on the sofa or attending couples' dance classes are being investigated as the third cultural components by which two people become a couple.


Kulturens auditorium, Tegnérsplatsen, Lund
  • Karin Lützen (lektor)


  • Ethnology
  • 21. Century
  • Scandinavia
  • gender studies
  • Family studies
  • cultural history
  • life form analysis
  • cultural analysis
  • youth and adult categories
  • heterosexuality
  • identity
  • private life
  • urban leisure life


  • Orvar Löfgren
  • Inger Lövkrona
  • ISBN: 978 87 635 1092 9

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