“Will all the adulterers in the room please stand up?” So begins Laura Kipnis’s profoundly provocative and waggish inquiry into our never-ending quest for lasting love, and its attendant issues of fidelity and betrayal. In the tradition of social critiques such as Christopher Lasch’s The Culture of Narcissism, Against Love keenly examines the meaning and cultural significance of adultery, arguing that perhaps the question concerns not only the private dilemma of whether or not to be faithful, but also the purpose of this much vaunted fidelity.
With a novelist’s eye for detail, psychological acuity, and linguistic panache, Kipnis at once humorously and seriously explores the rules and rituals of modern coupledom and domesticity (from the establishment of curfews and whereabouts to actual searches and seizures), even as she deftly analyzes the larger power structures that they serve. She wonders: Might adulterers be regarded not only as sexual renegades but as unwitting social theorists posing essential political questions about the social contract itself? What is the trade-off between personal gratification and the renunciations society demands of us? And is “working at your relationship” just another way of propping up the work ethicæas if we weren’t all overworked enough as it is? If adultery is ultimately a referendum on the sustainability of monogamy, how credible is the basic premise of modern coupledom: that desire for your one and only love can and will persist through a lifetime of togetherness (despite so much evidence to the contrary)?
Against Love offers no easy answers. Rather it intends to engage you in a commonsensical and brave examination of the plight of the modern personality, caught between the vicissitudes of desire and the decrees of social conformity.
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Less against love than against the cultural constraints that leads us to create wrong-headed ideas of love, this is book is the perfect antidote to any lingering social guilt about being happily single. Against Love: A Polemic will both shock and irritate, especially when you find yourself nodding your head in agreement while laughing at another broken taboo. Laura Kipnis (author of Bound and Gagged, Ecstasy Unlimited) clearly enjoyed writing this; she lets her wit run rampage over classic married situations and human emotions with results that include comparing adulterers to freedom fighters (using sharpened spoons to tunnel out from under love's barbed wire fences) and referring to tearful confessions of cheating as "funny little couple rituals." These make it fun, but the iconoclastic beauty is in her questions. How did good relationships come to be considered work instead of play? Why, unlike most of history and many other modern cultures, do Americans assume love and marriage go hand-in-hand? What lead to infidelity committed by public figures becoming a source of outrage? Kipnis doesn't have answers. Although urging us to have more compassion for our own desires, she expects her readers are smart enough to supply their own in response to her ideas. That attitude itself is a treat--if you're prepared to keep up through a complex whirlwind of Freud, Marx, Gingrich, Wollstonecraft, and several generations of pop culture. Jill LightnerFrom the Back Cover:
“Laura Kipnis’s witty and cunning treatise against modern love is as trenchant and unexpected, as jubilantly incendiary a work of social criticism as I’ve read in years. It is an explosive pleasure.”
“Against Love is a wonderfully provocative book, daring and incisive, written with verve and no small amount of humor. It raises a thousand questions most of us lack the courage to ask, about domestic life and even the meaning of the human enterprise, while remaining at every instant a delight to read.”
“Deeply subversive, tough-minded, clear-thinking, provocative and shrewd, Against Love has the nerve to wonder out loud if marriage has evolved into an instrument of social control. Yet what’s so winning about Kipnis’s manifesto is its high-spirited lack of cynicism; she is not so much against love as for honesty.”
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Descrizione libro Pantheon, 2003. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. nice cover, tight binding, clean pages thanx!. Codice libro della libreria 007-0397
Descrizione libro Pantheon, 2003. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. Brand New Hardcover! Pristine unmarked pages, no remainder marks, great buy straight from warehouse unread, sealed in plastic, exact artwork as listed, Codice libro della libreria 080170510054
Descrizione libro Pantheon, 2003. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. book. Codice libro della libreria M0375421890
Descrizione libro Pantheon, 2003. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. 1. Codice libro della libreria DADAX0375421890
Descrizione libro Pantheon, 2003. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. Never used!. Codice libro della libreria P110375421890