It has often been assumed that Europeans invented and had the exclusive mopoly over courtly and romantic love, commonly considered to be the highest form of relations between men and women. This view was particularly prevalent between 1770 and the mid-twentieth century, but was challenged in the 1960s when romantic love came to be seen as a universal sentiment that can be found in all cultures in the world. However, there remains the historical problem that the Europeans used this concept of love as a fundamental part of their self-image over a long period (traces of it still remain) and it became very much caught up in the concept of marriage. This book challenges the underlying Eurocentrism of this tion while exploring in a more general sense the connection between identity and emotions.
Anthony Waine teaches German and European Studies at Lancaster University, specialising in courses on the cultural history of the twentieth century. His previous publications include Martin Walser: The Development as Dramatist 1950 - 1970; Martin Walser (Autorenbuch); Brecht in Perspective and Culture and Society in the GDR (both co-edited with Graham Bartram). He has also taught at Hamburg University and Wadham College, Oxford, and was awarded the Pilkington Prize for Teaching Excellence in 2000.