- Published: September 4, 2022
- Updated: September 4, 2022
- Level: College
- Language: English
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136144 John Lee has presented six styles or models of love, which he called Agape (altruistic love), Eros (love of beauty), Ludus (playful love), Mania (obsessive love), Pragma (realistic love) and Storge (Companionate love). (Based on Sternberg and Barnes, 1988).
Love had been interpreted in many ways; philosophically, religiously, psychologically and sociologically. John Alan Lee’s theory on love is appreciated by many including Susan and Clyde Hendrick, who developed a Love’s Attitude Scale based on Lee’s theory
Love means different things and emotions to different people and one person’s love could be meaningless to another. Love could be heady, and many have compared it to be under the influence of strong drugs.
In his autobiography ” Love’s Gay Fool” Lee gives vivid picture of his pursuits of love. His commitment to gay and lesbianism are well known. It is told that in personal life ‘he followed the advice of the ancient Greek poet, Homer: ” Let love be the business of our lives.”
http://www. clga. ca/About/NPC/LeeJA-2005077. htm
In ‘Models of Love’ (1974), Lee argues that all the styles of love are equally important and valid. His theoretical test of love’s styles is authentic, authoritative, and his description of six love models had not been questioned or bettered. Conceptually speaking, Lee has presented love in almost all its splendors. He has not hesitated to show its obsessive and ugly side. He has been pragmatic about its diverse approaches and endings.
When he says Eros is ‘quick to decay’ it brings to mind a flower of rare beauty, but limited life. Ludus presents a playful, teenage, ever-young, always refreshing side of love that could be divine and passionate simultaneously. Storge could be seen more in older couples, where compassion is the basis of love instead of physical attraction. Mania comes under the psychological problems of love, where partner or partners could be obsessed beyond reasoning and this irrational desire for the other person could lead to violent endings. Pragma is the realistic side of love, of modern origin, where love could be equated with a business relationship; at the same time, not entirely modern, because it could also be seen in olden days where marriages and relationships were formed according to political environment. Agape is unselfish, sacrificial kind of love, which is rare, but heartrending and most of the immortal love stories are based on Agape.
All his love styles are ideologically and theoretically correct and without reproach.
Still, while naming the psychology beyond love, we have to be aware that emotions, especially stronger ones like love of another human being, cannot be curtailed or limited to certain categories. It cannot come under a rigid frame work. At first glance, no doubt, his theories look complete and irreproachable. But on reflection, we come to the conclusion that a gripping emotion like love cannot be of only six types. Love perhaps is as diverse as the number of its victims. It cannot be standardized; its beginnings and endings are beyond any reasoning, because love forms individual shapes according to the personality of lovers. So, it is not wrong to say that Lee has totally succeeded in creating love theories, but theories cannot reflect the entire ocean called love.
Consummate love has been shown by many theorists as another possibility, which is defined as ” the full or complete measure of love involving the combination in equally extreme amounts of passion, commitment and intimacy” http://facweb. bhc. edu/EastCampus/leeb/hsex/hsexch07/tsld032. htm
These models were also condemned as permissive of gay, lesbianism and bisexuality. This does not prevent Lee’s being referred to as Psychologist.
1. Lee, John (1976), The Colors of love, Prentice Hall,
2. Lee, John (1991), ed., Gay Midlife and Maturity, Hayworth Pr. Inc. San Francisco.
1. http://www. clga. ca/About/NPC/LeeJA-2005077. htm
2. http://facweb. bhc. edu/EastCampus/leeb/hsex/hsexch07/tsld032. htm
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