Beyond the Novel

Go beyond the novel to explore depictions of romantic love in movies, television, comics, popular music, advertisements, and more. How are romance stories told off the page?

Writing mature love

Crusie1 copy

Jennifer Crusie says that the structure of romance novels makes it difficult for them to depict mature love. Rarely do novels cover a several year period, and so writers have to foreshadow a deeper connection than the infatuation that comes from the characters first…

Romance in Indian cinema

Film still, Jayashree Kamble interview

While novels may be the dominant form of popular romance in the U.S., cinema dominates in India, says scholar Jayashree Kamble.

Stigma and surprise

Photo, Sociology Papers, Nov. 11 2013, Lettawren

Sociologists Joanna Gregson and Jen Lois examined their own prejudices as they studied romance readers and writers.

Shall we dance?

Cover image, How to Dance: A Complete Ball-room and Party Guide, 1878, Tousey & Small, public domain

The Library of Congress’ collection of ballroom dance manuals lets visitors peek back into the history of one of the most romantic of pastimes.

Unhappily ever after

Alan Weiss (cover art), “I Was a Girl Who’d Stop at Nothing” from My Love #17, Stan Lee (writer) and George Tuska (illustrator), 1972.

Can unhappy endings be idealistically romantic, too? Jacque Nodell takes a look at a tale of squandered opportunity penned by Stan Lee.

Truths about Shakespeare

Lithograph, "Romeo & Juliet," c.1879, Metropolitan Litho. Studio, Library of Congress

Shakespeare’s sonnets, romantic? Scholar Robert Matz takes a closer look at these complicated poems.

Phillis Wheatley

Film still, Darlene Clark Hine interview

Phillis Wheatley first captured some of the feelings of love and longing that would later appear in African American romance novels.

Interdisciplinary love studies

Photo, 154/365 - Heart for you, Olga Filonenko, Mar. 24, 2013, Flickr, creative commons

When we think about love, do we cast too narrow a net? Dr. Stephanie Evans makes the call to think more broadly about the many faces of love.

Diotima: Classical love

Photo, Roman female sarcophagus muses left side, Jonathan Dresner, 2008, Flickr

The website Diotima introduces visitors to love, romance, and the roles of women in the ancient classical world.

Proceedings of the Old Bailey

Photo, The Central Criminal Court, Old Bailey, Alan Denney, 2012, Flickr, Creative Commons

Historic court records capture the married and romantic life of the lower classes in the Proceedings of the Old Bailey.